Energize is thrilled to announce the addition of Lauren Densham to our team. Lauren joined us in January to lead ESG and impact initiatives for Energize and help guide strategy for our stakeholders.
The venture capital industry is starting to pay closer attention to environmental, social and governance factors when making investment and operating decisions. Venture capital plays acritical role in addressing some of society’s most pressing challenges, and investors are increasingly seeking impact returns aligned to financial returns. As a venture investor at the intersection of energy, sustainability and technology, Energize is no stranger to the importance of environmental and societal impact within our ecosystem. But we’re excited to now have a full-time team member fully dedicated to supporting us, our portfolio and our Limited Partners in these efforts.
Enter Lauren! Lauren joins us from KPMG where she led ESG strategy for clients across the public, private and non-profit sectors. In this role she worked with infrastructure asset owners, corporations and private equity clients on their approach to ESG and sustainable development – including helping one of the largest global asset managers develop its climate strategy.
During her 13-year tenure with KPMG, she held positions in Audit, Corporate Strategy and M&A before joining KMPG International and taking a role setting strategy for its global network of professional services firms. While on the global strategy team, Lauren focused on corporate citizenship and sustainability, fostering an appreciation for sustainable development and laying the foundation for her future career.
Seeing the missing link between the burgeoning sustainability sector and the lack of more traditional business talent focused on the area is what initially sparked Lauren’s interest.
“There is a big opportunity for the financial markets to play a role in driving the clean energy transition, and there’s a real need for people with all types of skillsets and backgrounds to be a part of it,” she said. “But perhaps more than anything else, what this transition needs is innovation. I’m excited to join Energize and work with entrepreneurs who are shaping the future of sustainability with technology.”
Outside of her experience with KPMG, Lauren has bolstered her knowledge of sustainable development through collaborations with the UN Global Compact and a year-long leadership training program with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. Lauren is also highly involved in the local community and was nominated for the Chicago Council for Global Affairs’ Emerging Leaders Program in 2021. Her pro bono experience with World Business Chicago’s venture arm has provided her valuable exposure to the Chicago venture ecosystem, and she puts these skills to work as a partner in Social Venture Partners Chicago (SVP Chicago), which supports innovative nonprofits with funding and capacity building services.
Lauren’s new role with Energize marries her expertise in ESG and sustainability, her excitement for the opportunity in venture, and her love for her hometown of Chicago. We look forward to taking our work in ESG and impact to the next level with her at the helm. Please join us in officially welcoming Lauren to the team!