Catherine Mott Honored with Hans Severiens Award

By: Marianne Hudson, ACA Executive Director

It was with great enthusiasm that the Angel Capital Association honored Catherine Mott with the prestigious Hans Severiens Award at last week’s 2017 ACA Summit.  The Hans Severiens Award is presented annually to recognize one individual’s work in advancing the field of angel investing. Catherine is a great representative of the spirit of the award, with impacts ranging from developing and educating angel best practices to regulatory policy work to advocating for startups and helping expand the diversity of the angel investing community.

Catherine Mott

Catherine was gracious and moved upon receiving the award and speaking with the 640 attendees at the Summit, held in San Francisco.

“When it comes to investing in women and minorities, angels far outpace the venture capitalists.  Successful exits of a women or minority owned startup are commonplace for us,” said Catherine.  “It’s important to keep building on this record.”

That diversity begins with leaders like Catherine, whose influence and leadership is exactly what we hope to recognize with the Hans Severiens Award. Not only was she a stellar leader during her tenure as ACA Chair, but she has helped more women become angels.  She was one of the few who had the courage to ‘invite herself’ to angel investing more than fifteen years ago, and ensure many more broke through the doors, in a thoughtful and professional way.

“This is quite an honor,” she began, and named many of the individuals that had helped and encouraged her over the years. “When I was looking at starting an angel investing group more than fifteen years ago, it was the help of these key individuals that guided me and helped me to become an angel investor, to develop best practices,” said Catherine.

The award is named after Hans Severiens, founder of one of the first angel groups in the U.S., the Band of Angels, which continues as one of the most active in the world. Hans freely shared his wisdom in angel investing to help others understand the value of angel investing and the model he developed for the Band of Angels; his mentoring activities encouraged and supported the establishment of many other angel groups.

Catherine is founder of BlueTree Allied Angels, which has invested more than $42 million in 55 startup companies, and BlueTree Venture Fund, which has $10 million under management. Mott serves on the boards of startup and growing companies including Anglr, Figure 8, Peptilogics, Imprint, and Westmoreland Advanced Materials.  She holds a portfolio monitor seat with Cryothermics, Instream Media, Lube Holdings, Zone 2 Surgical, Thorley (4Moms), Cisse, and Rinovum Women’s Health.

Catherine also represents America’s angel community to the Securities and Exchange Commission by serving as a member of the SEC Advisory Committee on Small and Emerging Companies. She is a past chairman of ACA, and serves globally as an instructor for several courses for the Angel Resource Institute (ARI).  She is a former Board Chairman of both ACA and ARI, helping both organizations to grow and better serve the angel community.

“We are pleased to recognize Catherine’s impact on the angel investment community and her achievements on behalf of so many startups.  Her contributions have helped to vastly expand the reach, resources, quality, and diversity of angel investors and the startup economy nationwide,” said John Huston, Chairman Emeritus of ACA and Founder and Chairman Emeritus of Ohio TechAngel Funds.

What’s next for Catherine?  “Pittsburgh is now among the top five states for receiving money from the National Institutes of Health, and I am focusing on supporting more life science deals.  It is a vital, exciting space,” said Catherine.

We also know she will win another important award next week.  She is the winner of the Impact Award by the Pittsburgh Venture Capital Association, with a celebration scheduled for May 11.  She was also recently named one of Pennsylvania’s Best 50 Women in Business.  Hopefully she has a large enough mantle for all these deserved awards!