David Folk, Chairman
David is a passionate serial entrepreneur, venture capital investor and philanthropist. He co-founded two venture capital firms since he began his career in 1984 and backed over 50 entrepreneurial companies throughout North America with over $500 million in capital focusing on innovation and technology.
Avotus is one of the last remaining companies in the portfolio of David's venture firm, which he sunset in 2016. He has been chair of the Avotus board since 2007.
David is a founding member of the Task Force on Competitiveness and Prosperity (2001) and past Chair of Kids Help Phone, one of Canada’s leading charities (1997-2000). He has been a director, advisor, strategist and coach for dozens of successful public and private companies.
David is the co-founder and CEO of NEXT Integrative Minds Life Sciences, a company that provides adaptive solutions to interpersonal problems using breakthrough technologies in neuroscience and human dynamics.
David is a graduate of the Richard Ivey School of Business at University of Western Ontario.
Richard S. Garnick, Director
Entrepreneur, leader, innovator and change agent, Richard currently serves on numerous company Boards including Avotus (since 2007), and is an advisor to numerous private companies and private equity firms.
Previously, Richard was responsible for leading and building Wipro Technologies (NYSE–WIT) as Chief Executive, Americas & Global Business lines. During his tenure, Wipro went from a slow growth middle of the pack global services provider to one of India’s top 4 Global IT/Business Services companies. Mr. Garnick has been widely recognized as a key architect in changing Wipro’s go-to-market and delivery of an array of new business lines. The company grew at a CAGR of over 75% during this period from $140M/year to over $3B/year, while the organization grew from 4,500 employees to over 75,000. Market Capitalization grew from $2B to over $22B during the period.
As founder of The ConJoin Group, Richard architected the acquisition of the privately held PHNS, a leading independent healthcare provider in US for over $250M in partnership with Global Private Equity firm Actis Capital. The Actis transaction included the purchase of the ConJoin offshore operation which demonstrated the value of the BOT model. Richard also brings experience from 20+ years in various leadership roles at leading technology companies Texas Instruments (NYSE – TXN), Arrow Electronics (NYSE- ARW) and Avnet (NYSE- AVT).