Alpha Girls: The Women Upstarts Who Took on Silicon Valley's Male Culture and Made the Deals of a Lifetime
An unforgettable story of four women who came to California to try to make it in a world stacked against them. Through grit and ingenuity, the women became stars in cutthroat, high-stakes, male dominated Silicon Valley and helped build some of the most important companies of our day. They were written out of history - until now.
In Alpha Girls, award-winning journalist Julian Guthrie takes readers behind the closed doors of venture capital, an industry that transforms economies and shapes how we live. We follow the lives and careers of Magdalena Yesil, a fiercely focused migr from Turkey who, after getting her electrical engineering degree from Stanford, endured tech conferences that featured naked women as entertainment; Mary Jane Hanna, who made her way from the corn fields of Terre Haute to the storied venture capital firm IVP on Sand Hill Road, only to be pulled back from the glass ceiling by expectations at home; Theresia Gouw, a first generation Asian American from a working class town who was so determined to integrate into American life that she refused to eat ethnic food, and who competed with the venture capital guys even on the football field; and Sonja Hoel, a cheerful blue-eyed Southerner who moved to Silicon Valley to join Menlo Ventures after getting her MBA from Harvard, landed hot Internet deals, and was transformed by a personal crisis. All had to navigate a world run by men, push for equal pay, and deflect sexist attitudes and clients who made passes or mistook them for secretaries. They won and lost startup deals ranging from Google and Facebook to Salesforce and Skype.
Granted unparalleled access to the secretive VC universe, Guthrie intimately details the women's victories and defeats, their struggles to juggle work and family, and the broadsides they suffered when they least expected it. Despite the setbacks, they would rise again to rewrite the rules for an industry they love. In Alpha Girls, Guthrie reveals their untold stories.