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Founder Dialogues III

Founder Collective

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (EDT)

Cambridge, MA

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Event Details



Sponsored by: Founder Collective


Featuring: Diane Hessan

Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Communispace


Moderator: Eric Paley, Managing Partner, Founder Collective


Date: October 27th, 2010

Location: Microsoft New England R&D Center

One Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA 02142

Time: 6pm – 8pm


Registration: Open to public.  Limited Seating Available. Please be sure to register early.



Founder Dialogues is a Cambridge-based public event series featuring successful founders.

Have you ever wondered about the founders behind successful companies?  How did they dream up their businesses?  How did they get enough conviction to bet on success?  What path led them to where they are now?  What challenges did they face?  What advice would they give to future entrepreneurs?

Founder Collective is dedicated to creating a forum for the start-up community to have these and more questions answered. We hope to enhance connections between entrepreneurs, students, venture capital funds, and early-stage startups through the real-life success stories of selected startup founders. 




Diane Hessan

Diane Hessan is President and CEO of Communispace, one of the fastest growing social networking companies in the country, “with a Blue Chip client list that would make a Madison Avenue giant jealous," according to Advertising Age. A pioneer in creating online communities to help marketers generate consumer insights, Diane helped found Communispace in 1999 and hasn’t looked back.

Today, Diane leads Communispace’s employees in building and managing the more than 350 private online customer communities the company has created for a marquee list of global corporations. Communispace’s revenues have tripled over the last four years, and the company enjoys a 90+ percent client retention rate. It also has received a wide range of awards for product innovation, social media leadership, and corporate culture.

Diane has spent her 30-year career helping companies become customer-focused—both as
a business executive, and as co-author of the best selling book Customer-Centered Growth:
Five Strategies for Building Competitive Advantage
. She has received many awards and citations for her leadership, including Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year (National Finalist), and the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce Entrepreneur of the Year. In addition to her professional recognition, Diane is quoted frequently in the business media and is a highly sought-after speaker and expert in the marketing arena.

Diane has committed time and energy sitting on the boards of numerous organizations including the Advertising Research Foundation, The Business Innovation Factory, the Progressive Business Leaders Network, the Mass Technology Leadership Council, Horizons for Homeless Children, The Boston Philharmonic, Stand for Children, and the Tufts Alumni Council.

A summa cum laude graduate of Tufts University, Diane received an MBA from Harvard Business School. She is the mother of two college-age daughters and co-founder of The Sound Bytes,
a cappella group that writes lyrics about business and performs at major conferences.



“What we do.”

Full suite of professional services: Providing both best-in-class technology and the key consulting, management, and reporting services that bring your community to life. We’ll begin by aligning to your business needs and we’ll continue to strengthen that bond throughout our partnership.

Best-in-class recruiting: We’ve fulfilled our clients’ criteria for their member composition 100% of the time. Our capabilities support multiple means of finding and engaging the ‘right’ members for your community.

Highly engaged communities:  Communispace community members are truly engaged with your learning agenda resulting in faster, better, more actionable insights. Our community management skills have been recognized as industry leading by an independent research firm.

Analysis & reporting: We help you uncover the unexpected, and make it easy for you to take action. Our approach to analysis and reporting is rapid, thorough, insightful, and pragmatic—providing ready access to rich insights and intelligence to guide business decisions all the way up to the CEO.

Fast turnaround: Working with Communispace, you’ll know you can tap into members, literally overnight, to meet urgent needs. Real time data from your community is available 24/7.

For more information please visit

Have questions about Founder Dialogues III? Contact Founder Collective
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When & Where

Microsoft New England R&D Center
One Memorial Drive
Cambridge, MA 02142

Wednesday, October 27, 2010 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (EDT)

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Founder Collective

Founder Collective is a seed-stage venture capital fund, built by a collection of successful entrepreneurs, providing the first professional round of capital to promising entrepreneurs with compelling business concepts. Founder Collective is focused on helping the next generation of great entrepreneurs build important and lasting businesses. Founder Collective focuses on technology-driven companies across a broad range of industries.

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