Bill Elkus conceived the Clearstone Venture Partners concept in 1997 and has been a Managing Member of its General Partners since their inception. In each of 2004, 2005 and 2006, Bill was recognized as one of the top 100 Venture Capitalists in the United States by Forbes Magazine in its annual Midas List.
His current board memberships and observer roles include Certus Software, Cooking.com, Sonata Systems and WeddingChannel.com. Prior board memberships or observer roles include United Online (NASDAQ: UNTD) and Overture (acquired by Yahoo! in 2003). Along with Jim Armstrong, he represented Clearstone's interests in PayPal.com (acquired by eBay in 2002). From 1995 through its sale in 2000, Bill was on the Board of Directors of the Chronicle Publishing Company (The San Francisco Chronicle and KRON television).
Bill is a 1977 graduate of Harvard Law School (JD, magna cum laude) and a 1973 graduate of MIT, where he earned a MS in Management from Sloan School of Management and a BS in Mathematics.
Bill began his career at the Sand Hill Road office of the Boston Consulting Group in 1977. He spent five years as a strategic planning consultant at BCG offices in Menlo Park, Chicago and Munich covering a wide variety of industries, including semiconductors, magnetic recording media, and publications databases.
From 1982 through 1993, Bill was full-time as President of Nathan Todd & Company, an investment advisory firm which specialized in providing wealth management services and in representing private family fortunes. As part of this work, Bill co-founded five independently managed investment partnerships with over $600 million under management in the areas of securities trading, real estate and merchant banking. He was also active in venture capital, including investments in traditional funds, co-investments with those funds, and direct venture investments.
In addition to his work at Nathan Todd & Company, from 1994 through 1997, Bill was the co-founder and a Managing Director of a boutique Los Angeles merchant bank affiliated with Jefferies & Company, Inc.