Heather Jo Richman

Founder, Defense Investor Network
32nd Annual NDIA SO/LIC Symposium

Heather Richman is a seasoned corporate development and strategy expert with a longstanding focus on the intersection of national security, technology, and investment. She has a diverse background including time spent on Capitol Hill, at Stanford University, and in the national security innovation sector.

Richman spent 1999-2004 in Washington, D.C., with U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer of New York, where she oversaw appropriations, budget, and tax. She helped manage the post-9/11 redevelopment of Lower Manhattan and helped establish the Department of Homeland Security from a funding standpoint. She then managed government relations for Stanford University and outreach strategies for the newly formed Precourt Institute for Energy, which focuses on the intersection of energy and national security.

She was a founding team member of Elemental Excelerator, now the energy arm of Emerson Collective, which was initially funded by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) in 2012. Elemental has leveraged Navy’s initial $36M investment to accelerate 112 portfolio companies and raise more than $2B in private and corporate capital.

Richman now serves as Entrepreneur in Residence for BMNT Partners where she leverages her experience and network to build vibrant ecosystems of entrepreneurs, investors, and experts to rapidly transition impactful, national security/dual-use focused solutions for internal USDOD and Intelligence Community clients. She serves on the board of the Institute for Security + Technology (IST), whose goal is to provide tools and insights for companies and governments to outpace emerging global security threats.

In 2019 she launched the Defense Investor Network in response to rising U.S. investor and family office concern around foreign direct investment (FDI) in order to determine the effects of such transactions on U.S. national security and create alternative pathways. Also, in 2019, she launched the Family Office Command [FOCOM], a network of family offices and HNWIs who invest urgent and agile capital to build and safeguard the critical capabilities America requires to maintain her global leadership position.