Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Heavy hitters join Sustain Blaine board

Local investment group forming in wake of Economic Summit

Express Staff Writer

Rick LeFaivre

    Venture capitalist and former Apple executive Rick LeFaivre has been elected to the Sustain Blaine board of directors.
    LeFaivre participated on a panel at the Sustain Blaine Economic Summit in Sun Valley on Oct. 8, which emphasized the importance of investing in the local economy.
    Sustain Blaine is a nonprofit economic development agency that receives private and public funding to pursue community development projects in the Wood River Valley.
    “I am very supportive of Sustain Blaine’s dedication to creating a thriving year-round economy for our region, with a particular focus on building a vibrant ‘innovation ecosystem’ that supports both existing and new companies,” LeFaivre said in a written statement.
    LeFaivre will join a 15-member board composed of nine private-sector representatives and six representatives from local government. He replaces Power Engineers executive Frank Halverson, a long-standing board member.
    LeFaivre has been a Sun Valley homeowner since 2000, and moved here full-time in 2011. He started his career as a computer science professor at Rutgers University after receiving his Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Wisconsin. He served as vice president of advanced technology at Apple, a partner at OVP Venture Partners in Seattle, and director of new venture incubators at the University of California, San Diego, and the University of Washington.
    In addition to Sustain Blaine, Lefaivre currently serves on the boards of the Carbon Design Group in Seattle and the Energy and Environment Directorate of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Wash. He has testified before the Congress of the United States on matters of technology policy.

I am very supportive of Sustain Blaine’s dedication to creating a thriving year-round economy for our region.”
Rick LeFaivre
Board member

    LeFaivre will take part in the formation of a Sustain Blaine working group that will explore opportunities presented at the Sustain Blaine Economic Summit by keynote speaker Michael Shuman, the author of “Local Dollars, Local Sense.”
    Shuman spoke about the many ways communities can keep investment capital flowing in the local economy, rather than allowing it to “leak” elsewhere. These include the creation of co-ops and partnerships between vendors, harnessing pensions locally, “local first” incentive purchasing campaigns, local direct stock placements, and improving local government policies to remove anti-local biases.
    Those interested in participating in the local investment working group, “with the time, interest and relevant experience in fostering entrepreneurship, venture capital, private equity and/or financial structuring,” are asked by Sustain Blaine Executive Director Harry Griffith to sign up at, or by emailing
    For additional information, contact Joy Kasputys at 721-2323 or
Tony Evans:

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