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Brightcove alumni update: Elisabeth Carpenter joins EverTrue as chief operating officer

Posted by Scott Kirsner  June 20, 2013 12:02 PM

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Elisabeth Carpenter was among the first handful of employees at Brightcove, the online video hosting company that is now publicly-traded, and it was a Brightcove connection that led her to her new gig: serving as chief operating officer at EverTrue, a Boston startup that has raised $6.5 million in funding so far... and happens to be based in the very same building as Brightcove, Atlantic Wharf.

Carpenter had helped build up the sales, customer support, and professional services teams over more than seven years at Brightcove, but she departed the company last June. She then took some time off, helping to organize her 25th Harvard College reunion and a 30th reunion for her high school. "With both of those, I was dealing with the reality of all the bad information and incomplete information that all of these institutions have on their alumni," she says. "They have a hard time getting alumni to show up at a reunion, much less donate, much less talk to each other."

That's exactly the problem that EverTrue is trying to address: helping schools (and their fundraising officers) keep better tabs on their alums, and helping alums stay in touch with one another.

Among EverTrue's early investors was Bob Mason, a co-founder and former chief technology officer at Brightcove (he left last July.) Mason introduced Carpenter to EverTrue founder Brent Grinna. She joined the company late last month. "I used to get off the elevator on the 4th floor, but now I stay on for another three floors," she quips.

"When we started Brightcove, we didn't even have the clay yet," Carpenter says. "Here, Brent has the clay and it's already formed into a bust of somebody, but we don't know who it is yet. They've been able to do a massive amount in the last two-and-a-half years, but I feel like I can leave my fingerprints in a positive way on the company, and help take it to the next level." Carpenter says she believes that EverTrue's market — helping educational institutions and other non-profits cultivate relationships with prospective donors — "is a surprisingly massive market, even larger than what we had at Brightcove. This is a product that can make money and do good."

Carpenter says her top priorities at the new job are "bringing customers in, and making sure they're happy." EverTrue has 23 employees, and it participated in the TechStars Boston program in 2011.

Brightcove went public in February 2012, and Carpenter is not the first to peel off. Mason is now an angel investor and mentor at TechStars Boston. Former sales VP Steve Green is now running sales at database startup NuoDB. Hossein Kash Razzaghi and two other Brightcove veterans started Fancred, a mobile app for sports aficionados that has raised some seed funding. Former VP of technology Ashley Streb and his brother Jesse Streb, once a software engineer at Brightcove, have started rocketInsights, a mobile development shop in Newburyport. Tareef Kawaf, who had been SVP of engineering and operations at Brightcove until January, is now president at RStudio, a Boston startup focused on developing software and services around the open source R statistical computing environment. (RStudio was founded by J.J. Allaire, brother of Brightcove founder and chairman Jeremy Allaire.) Senior product designer Nat Tarbox departed for HubSpot. Onetime VP of organization development and talent management Elaine Pappas is now at Kinvey, a mobile software development startup in Boston.

And the guy responsible for filling all those open jobs, Edward Godin? Well, Brightcove's former chief people officer just left to run human resources at DataXu, a digital marketing startup in Boston.

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About Scott Kirsner

Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.

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