Featured Arlan Hamilton Keynote Speaker Founder Backstage Capital Gravity Speakers
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Available for

Fireside Chat, Q&A, Panel, Keynote, Virtual Presentation

Fee Ranges

Domestic In-Person (USA): $50,000 or above*
International In-Person:
Please inquire

* Ranges are presented as a guideline only. Speaker fees vary by engagement type and are subject to change without notice. For an exact quote, please contact Gravity Speakers.

Traveling From

California, USA

Tags: Gravity's Exclusives / Backstage Capital / Business / Activism / Overcoming Adversity / College & University / Diversity & Inclusion / Investing & Venture Capital / Management / Entrepreneurship / Startup / Team Building / Leadership / Motivational / Social Change & Issues / Technology


Arlan Hamilton, founder at Backstage Capital and Runner, is a serial entrepreneur, author and master multi-tasker. 

Hamilton founded Backstage Capital in 2015 to invest in founders who are people of color, women and/or LGBTQ. Since its founding, Backstage has raised nearly $30 million and invested in 200 startups led by underestimated founders. 

In 2021, Hamilton founded talent operations startup Runner to connect outstanding operations talent with inclusive companies. Runner has already raised $2 million from investors like Precursor Ventures, Lunar Startups, Kapor Capital, and others. That same year, Backstage Capital saw one of its first true exits when ice cream startup Coolhaus sold to The Urgent Company. 

Arlan had an untraditional path into tech. Prior to starting Backstage Capital and Runner, Arlan authored the blog “Your Daily Lesbian Moment,” which she grew to a monthly readership of 50,000 fans worldwide. She also worked in the music industry as a tour coordinator for artists like Toni Braxon and Jason Derulo. Since entering the tech industry, Arlan has received a number of accolades in media publications like Fortune, Vanity Fair, and Fast Company

In 2020, Arlan published her book, “It’s About Damn Time”, detailing her journey from homelessness to venture capital. Arlan also hosts podcasts “Your First Million” and “Demystifying Faith”, and is the executive producer on “The Valley”, a daily soap opera that is like “General Hospital” but for the tech industry.

Hamilton differentiates herself from others in the tech industry by not being afraid to go against the grain. Case in point: Backstage Capital, under Hamilton’s leadership, raised nearly $5 million in one week through an equity crowdfunding campaign in 2021. The historic campaign created an opportunity for everyday people to invest in Backstage’s operations and benefit from Backstage’s future success. In doing so, Hamilton has also created a blueprint for other underestimated fund managers.

Arlan is a proponent of paying it forward and supporting other underestimated people in the tech industry and beyond. She’s a limited partner in funds at Collab Capital, Ganas Ventures, Lightship Capital, RareBreed Ventures and several others. Meanwhile, Arlan and her mother, Mrs. Earline Butler-Sims, founded a scholarship program for Black students at Oxford University and HBCU Dillard University.


Being the Change You Want to See

Garnering Attention in a Crowded Landscape

Breaking Rules While Breaking Ground

Launching Startups with Humanity

Black Women in Tech

Ecosystem Innovation

Bootstrapping a Venture Capital Fund

Approaching Investors

Managing a Remote Team

Arlan Hamilton is available for booking directly through Gravity Speakers and is currently represented by CAA.