Welcome to the Ring Venture Club

Exclusive to Texas A&M Former Students and Friends

Join Your Fellow Aggies

We are a venture investing club for former students and friends of Texas A&M. Together we evaluate venture deals, share insights and network with one another. Then each member has the opportunity to make an independent investment decision. It’s your portfolio, your decision.

This is a smart, simple way to own an asset class missing from many investors’ portfolios – and there’s no charge to be a member.

Learn more about the club

Benefits of Membership

  • Own a venture portfolio. You choose a diversified AVG venture fund in which to invest, then opt into as many or as few of the deals Ring evaluates.
  • Source deals. You can refer deals you find to Ring and comment on those that other members find.
  • Network and help build the Aggie entrepreneurial ecosystem. You can regularly network with a distinguished community of Aggies. Get in on the ground floor of The Ring Club, and help us realize the vision of forming a full-fledged Aggie Fund!

The Ring Venture Club has assembled an impressive team of advisors. To name just a few, here is a snapshot.

President:

 

Larry Warnock ’83 Larry is a seasoned venture-backed tech executive and investor with multiple exits. Most recently, he was President & CEO of Olono, an AI platform for sales effectiveness (acq. by InsightSquared). Previously, he was CEO of Gazzang, provider of big data security software (acq. by Cloudera) and CEO of Phurnace, provider of DevOps software (acq. by BMC Software). He was also formerly Venture Partner at AVLabs, the Incubator Fund of Austin Ventures. At A&M, he received a BBA in Marketing, was Student Body Judicial Board Chairman and Buck Weirus Award winner (’83).

Members:

 

Clint Bybee ’85 Clint graduated from Texas A&M with an engineering degree and holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. He is a co-founder and managing director of ARCH Venture Partners, the prestigious VC firm that has been investing for over 30 years. Clint serves on several boards as well as the Yellowstone Park Foundation and is an organizing member of the Texas Venture Capital Association.

 

Fred Caldwell ’82 Fred is a successful real estate developer in Houston and across the state of Texas. He is the co-founder and CEO of the Caldwell Companies, which owns, manages and markets industrial, retail and office buildings, residential communities and business parks. His company has developed some of the state’s most recognizable signature properties including Towne Lake, Cypress, and the Research Park at Texas A&M University.

 

Joyce Durst ’84 Joyce has an engineering degree from Texas A&M. She is the co-founder and CEO of Growth Acceleration Partners, a leading software development and services company with operations in multiple countries. Joyce is active in the Women Presidents Organization and the Special Olympics. Joyce mentors women CEOs as well as first-time entrepreneurs and is the recipient of several prestigious awards for her work in this area.

 

Blake Petty ’98 Blake is Executive Director of the McFerrin Center for Entrepreneurship at TAMU Mays Business School. Blake received a bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from A&M. He has worked in a variety of entrepreneurial capacities across the Texas A&M System, including 10 years in the Office of Technology Commercialization. He was a founding partner of Start-up Aggieland, plus co-founded the Aggie Angel Network and serves as their Executive Director.

 

Michael Plank ’83 Michael is the Chairman and CEO of the Plank Companies, based in Houston. He was appointed by Governor Abbott in 2019 to the Texas A&M Board of Regents. He is an appointee to the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and is a board member of the Greater Houston Partnership. Michael is also a member and past chairman of the Young President’s Organization.

 

Ray Rothrock ’77 Ray has nuclear engineering degrees from Texas A&M and MIT and an MBA from Harvard. He has been a legend of venture capital in Silicon Valley, CA for over three decades. He is a General Partner at Venrock Associates, the venture capital firm formed by the Rockefeller Family. Ray was a Forbes Midas Touch list recipient.

 

Branndon Stewart ’98 Branndon is a serial entrepreneur with several successful technology companies under his belt. He was the founder and CEO of OutboundEngine, a web services company that revolutionized web marketing for small to medium sized businesses. At A&M, Branndon was the quarterback for the football team and led the Aggies to their first Big 12 Championship and BCS Bowl appearance.

 

Graham Weston ’86 Graham is a successful technology founder/executive and real estate developer. He was co-founder and the first CEO of web hosting company Rackspace, what was one of the fastest growing tech companies in Texas. He is an active philanthropist in San Antonio, and has helped fund and start many companies in the fast growing technology sector of central Texas.