Our short list of amazing CFOs from the Women 2.0 community who just might be ready to fill those Google shoes.
By Betsy Mikel (Editor, Women 2.0)
A hot position just opened up in Silicon Valley earlier this week. "Working at Google is a privilege, nothing less," said Google's Chief Financial Officer Patrick Pichette announcing his retirement. "I have worked with the best of the best, and know that I am leaving Google in great hands." With his position lingering open, we got to thinking. Who might make a good replacement?
We must preface this by saying we’re not HR. And we’re not telling Google who they should hire. We’re sure they’ve got plenty of qualified people on the job of filling the position.
Still, we always look for opportunities to highlight members of the Women 2.0 community. Get to know some of these CFOs and learn about the awesome work they do!
Betty Kayton, Part-Time CFO for Various High Tech Companies
Betty Kayton is currently acting as the part-time CFO for RealScout, Nitrous.IO and Tophatter.com as well as a financial consultant for nearly a dozen others. She was an early employee at Dropbox and joined as their CFO just a few months after the company was founded in 2007.
“A good CFO is the right hand to the CEO,” she said in a blog post she wrote for Women 2.0. “Think of Tom Hagen’s role as consigliere in The Godfather: Don Vito always sought Tom’s advice, even though the advice wasn’t always followed. That’s why the CEO sits in the corner office (or… cubicle…or Ikea desk): to make the final decision. But the CFO wants to be sure that the CEO is aware of the ramifications of her decision so the decision is carefully thought out and there are no surprises later. Having a CFO as Devil’s Advocate is handy.”
Betty has over 25 years of experience in the technology industry, as a key member of the executive team at a number high-growth, venture-funded startups. Her abilities in the arenas of strategic planning and fundraising have made her in building appropriate infrastructure without stifling growth. She was certified as a CPA while working for Ernst & Young and holds an MBA from the University of Southern California and a BA from Pomona College.
Sarah Friar, CFO and Operations Lead at Square
Numbers woman Sarah Friar has been leading finance at Square since 2012 and gave a powerful closing keynote at the Women 2.0 San Francisco conference last year.
“I’m not afraid to be quantitative,” she told us in a backstage interview. “I think a lot of women shy away from utilizing numbers or utilizing more quantitative facts even in conversation. You shouldn’t, its a great thing to back up what you’re saying, albeit qualitative with the facts of the case.”
Before joining Square as CFO in June 2012, Sarah was was the Senior Vice President for finance and strategy at Salesforce.com. She previously worked at Goldman Sachs and McKinsey. She also sits on the board of NewRelic, a cloud-based software analytics company. Sarah Friar from Women 2.0 on Vimeo.
Kim Jabal, CFO of Path
Also a speaker at our San Francisco conference last year, Kim Jabal spoke on our panel Executives at Unicorn Companies and How they Do It. She’s an Internet and social media executive with over 20 years of finance, operations and IT experience at high growth companies in various stages of development including Google, Path, Lytro, Goldman Sachs, and Accenture.
Kim joined Path in 2013 as the company’s first CFO. Last year, the company closed a $25 million round of Series C funding.
Prior to joining Path she spent a year as VP Finance at Lytro, a startup focused on building the world’s first consumer light field camera. And, she has Google experience; for eight years, she led the investor relations team. Kim also sits on the board of FedEx, Bring Change 2 Mind and the Menlo Park-Atherton Education Foundation.
Kristina Salen, CFO of Etsy
Etsy made big headlines when they scooped Kristina Salen from Fidelity in 2013, where she had spent seven years leading their media, Internet and telco group.
Six months into her role as CFO at Etsy, Salen wrote about her observations moving from an investment world to a corporate one.
“In my new role, I joke that I don’t actually “do” anything tangible; instead, I spend my time with operating executives trying to help THEM do things,” she said in a LinkedIn piece titled Confessions of a Former Analyst. “I’ve observed many of the CEOs & CFOs at other companies are in on the same joke. If I were investing today, I would go deeper into management beyond the CEO & CFO. Developing these relationships would help me learn if operating executives are aligned with the C-Suite and therefore if the company has a shot at achieving its goals.
Did we miss anyone? Let us know in the comments!
About the author: Betsy Mikel is the managing editor of Women 2.0 and runs the content consultancy Aveck. She has a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and a lifelong obsession with French language and culture. When she's not biking all over every city she visits to find its best taqueria, you can find Betsy on Twitter at @betsym.