Stephen Culp, Co-founder
Stephen is a civic and business entrepreneur. A former U.S. Navy Reserve Officer, Peace Corps Volunteer, attorney, and NCAA Division I fencer, Stephen is also co-founder of venture-backed PriceWaiter, Delegator, Smart Furniture, Chattanooga Renaissance Funds I & II, and the non-profit ventures Causeway and CF Smackdown.
A board director to dozens of organizations and companies including the local Trust for Public Land, River City Company, the Metro Ideas Project, and Company Lab, Stephen has also served as a trustee of the Lyndhurst Foundation, a member of his mayor’s transition team, and as general partner for a venture group catalyzing a homegrown entrepreneurial and economic renaissance.
Stephen earned a J.D. from Stanford Law School, a fellowship from the Stanford Center on Conflict and Negotiation, and a B.A. as a varsity athlete at UNC-Chapel Hill, ranked 8th in a class of 4,000. While studying abroad at the Université de Paris VII and the Institut d’Etudes Politiques, he completed a photo and audio journal of the 1989-90 revolutions in Eastern Europe, revisiting the same region as a Peace Corps Volunteer from 1992 to 1994, where his colleagues and students named him Teacher of the Year.
A torchbearer for the 1996 Olympic Games, Stephen is also a black belt, the inventor of the original multi-patented “Smart Furniture”, a 2010 Marshall Fellow, and a 2016 member of Harvard Business School’s Young American Leaders Program. In 2004, he appeared on the cover of Inc. magazine for not paying himself enough money, and while in high school in the 80s, created a videogame rejected by Microsoft as “tasteless”.
More importantly, Stephen is a husband and father of two children, and is currently working with researchers from Israel and UAB to put an end to cystic fibrosis.