FSB entrepreneur-in-residence takes C-suite role in $1B startup

David Willbrand head shot

A John W. Altman Institute for Entrepreneurship entrepreneur-in-residence has taken on a new role in a unicorn startup company. David Willbrand has joined Pacaso as its chief legal officer. He was previously a partner and chair at Thompson Hine LLP.

Pacaso, started by Cincinnati entrepreneur Austin Allison, works to help make second-home ownership more attainable. Cincy Inno reported that in late March, Pacaso announced $75 million in new capital at a valuation of $1 billion, making it the fastest startup to reach unicorn status -- within five months of its launch.

Willbrand was one of the three original entrepreneurs-in-residence that joined the entrepreneurship department in fall 2018. EiRs provide entrepreneurial mentorship, coaching and support to Miami students, faculty, staff and alumni. They schedule residency office hours and hold one-on-one meetings with students, faculty/staff, and alumni, guest lecture on relevant topics in entrepreneurship across campus, help facilitate the Institute for Entrepreneurship co-curricular programs, and work with faculty on research and course development.

“My decision to take this leap is absolutely connected to my experiences as an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Miami. I’ve actively interacted with literally hundreds of incredible Miami students. I hope I give them something,” Willbrand said. “What they share with me is their vision and energy - and drive to take chances and change the world!”

The EiR program currently has eight members, and Willbrand will continue to be one of them.