Our firm Coburn Ventures would never have been started and would not exist today if Dave Bujnowski hadn’t been there in 2005 and at every moment since.
There are so many likeable attributes of Dave that is hard to know where to start and it would be impossible to pick just one so I won’t. But these have been critical:
+ a deep belief that our work and our specific approach have both value and meaning.
+ a deep desire to experience serving others.
+ an incredible desire to learn, grow, synthesize, solve puzzles, and pursue excellence.
+ exceptional empathy for others.
+ a great sense of humor and ability for story telling… And a passion for fun.
+ a sensational and passionate writer.
+ a wildly versatile world-class business analyst
Dave grew up in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania where his mom still lives. He studied polar extremes of finance and philosophy at Boston College. Dave is extraordinarily family oriented. He adores his niece Grace and nephew Jack. In December 2011, Dave married Kim Diamond and they are starting a family and in the process of moving into their dream house in Connecticut.
So… In a tribute to Dave I will recall how we came to work together.
I knew Dave from the earliest days of my joining UBS as the Global Tech Strategist in 1999. In fact, Dave pitched in significantly on the initiation piece I created mainly with Faye. Dave was on the semiconductor team in San Francisco and for some reason was intrigued by our work – or at least was just a real nice guy willing (as usual) to pitch in.
In July 2001, I was fortunate to start to work with him.
Dave had made a move to the Tech Sales group about a year earlier which never seemed to be a fit for him as far as I could tell but it wasn’t going to matter for long – in that during the downturn his entire group was to be eliminated. His boss in New York somewhat courageously — given the firm was in the midst of this full scale and wide spread downsizing – went to the head of research and suggested that Dave work on my team. Dave was so widely known and liked and admired and understood to be talented that this shift was approved.
Since then I have had an extraordinary partner. His contributions have been seemingly infinite.
Dave has had his hand prints on absolutely everything we have generated during the past decade. He has especially helped in developing our investment process bit by bit and in generating our so-called node #1 societal shifts that are at the core of our work.
He was instrumental in the creation of The Change Function as a framework as well as a written book.
He has assessed hundreds and hundreds of companies exquisitely and is equally comfortable on the short side as on the long side.
When I asked Dave to offer a couple thoughts on what might be especially important in describing himself in this bio he included the following:
“I have a passion for the natural world – whether it involves getting my hands dirty in the garden, hiking with grizzly bears in Denali, or marveling at the Sierra Nevada stars.” Dave loves snowboarding, paddle boarding, golf, hiking and has completed a couple marathons including New York.
And he also offered the following:
“My purpose statement: I will create a family that loves to give; makes dreams come true for themselves and others; and roots for the success of others through acceptance and a passion to make the world a better place.”
…Pip, January, 2013
A Favorite Quote:
“We contemporaries, alive today, are the extraordinarily improbable individuals who did get conceived and born, out of all the others who might have been, but never got to be. I sometimes picture an endless cloud of souls out there—the ones who never got to live. And when you think that these extraordinary odds are multiplied with every generation back to the beginning of sexual reproduction, you see that each of us is unlikely to a degree that utterly defies imagination. The odds against each of us being here dwarfs the number of stars in our galaxy, it dwarfs the number of stars in all the galaxies, and it dwarfs the number of atoms in all the stars in all the galaxies in the entire universe. Deep improbability is far more astonishing than deep time or deep space.… What should we make of all this? I guess my reaction is to say, “Congratulations! We all made it! We each have won, in the most formidable game of chance ever conceived.” … Walter Alvarez.
Dave’s add for context: I LOVE the point about how “improbable” we each are… “unlikely to a degree that utterly defies imagination”. Wow. The underlying message of the above passage is profound and was made explicit in the presentation I saw by Professor Alvarez. It was effectively … “OK … you all made it. The odds of you existing are essentially ‘impossible’ … yet you are here. Now what are you going to do with it??”