Stephen Hays is the founder of What If Ventures, a venture firm investing primarily in early stage mental health and addiction recovery focused startups.
After decades struggling with addiction, and type-1 bi-polar disorder, Stephen was able to experience a trans-formative change in his life with the help of his loving wife and children, his father, and close friends. More of his story with addiction can be read here.
Since launching What If Ventures as a syndicate in January 2020, Stephen has invested over $23,000,000 in 23 mental health startups via a syndicate of over 4,000 investors.
Stephen is also the host of a podcast dedicated to mental health, wellness and recovery, called “Stigma.” You can read more about the podcast and listen to his conversations with entrepreneurs, leaders and others about how mental health has impacted their lives here: Stigma Podcast
Previously, Stephen was the Founder and Managing Partner of Deep Space Ventures, a VC fund focused early stage tech startups. During his time at Deep Space, Stephen led 25 early stage investments in B2B SaaS, esports, gaming and healthcare startups.
Before starting Deep Space Ventures, Stephen was an investment banker on Wall Street for 6+ years. He primarily focused on helping large companies raise capital, and execute Mergers & Acquisitions.
Stephen received his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering at West Point, and received his MBA from Vanderbilt.
Stephen lives in Frisco, TX with his loving wife, beautiful children and their pet bunny rabbit, named Mr. Snuffleupagus.
Graham is an experienced angel investor with years of deal sourcing, vetting and execution experience. He’s also an advisor and personal investor in multiple emerging VC funds (esports and blockchain).
Prior to joining What If Ventures, Graham was a venture capital Associate at Bionic and before that worked in equity research at Credit Suisse in NYC.
Outside of work, Graham is an experienced CFO and co-founder of PS Kitchen, a nonprofit restaurant in Times Square NYC.
Graham is currently a CFA Level 3 Candidate and a Columbia Executive MBA ’21 Candidate. He holds an undergraduate degree in economics from Wheaton College.