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Funding the future of psychedelic medicine

Empath Ventures is a VC fund that invests in early-stage
psychedelics startups

We are in a mental health crisis

1B

People suffer from
mental health issues

$1T

Economic cost of poor mental health

200%

Increase in deaths of despair
over last 20 years

Psychedelics are transforming mental healthcare, addiction treatment and more
Learn more on our podcast
Sam Banister - The Art and Science of Designing Novel Psychedelic Compounds
 Music For Psychedelic Therapy - Mendel Kaelen, Founder and CEO of Wavepaths
Psychedelic VC Due Diligence

Our Team

Brom Rector
Founding Partner
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Brom was raised in a military family, which gave him an extreme view into the challenges of mental health at a young age. Brom first experienced psychedelics nearly a decade ago. Psychedelics helped him process traumas and stay emotionally healthy while pursuing a high-pressure hedge fund career, CFA Charter, and Master’s from Georgia Tech.

Prior to founding Empath, Brom spent 7 years as a portfolio manager and quantitative researcher - most recently as a Global Macro PM at Crabel Capital Management, a quant fund with $9B AUM.

After leaving Crabel in 2020, Brom started a podcast that covers the psychedelics industry from an investing, scientific, and cultural impact perspective.  The research that went into this podcast and the connections it established laid the groundwork for what would become Empath Ventures.

Samantha Tabone
Partner
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Sam leads in-depth technical and scientific due diligence on Empath’s psychedelic biotech investments.

Sam served as the VP of R&D for PurMinds, a neuromedicine startup developing novel therapeutics for neurodegenerative diseases.  As an independent consultant she’s led projects for leading psychedelic companies including Beckley Psytech, advised family offices on Life Science investment strategies, and worked as a temporary strategic director at several biotech startups.

Sam has been fascinated with neuroscience and psychedelics (especially DMT) since she was in her teens.  She’s most excited about funding psychedelic startups working towards solutions for complex neurological disorders.

She holds a B.S. in Chemistry from the University of Toronto and attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s Pharmaceutical Sciences Master’s program.

Melody Kamrani
Venture Partner
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Melody focuses on technical due diligence and deal sourcing as a Venture Partner at Empath.  

Melody is passionate about the intersection of psychedelic science and mental health. She sees her work at Empath as part of a path to a career in those fields.


Melody recently completed her Master’s in Biotechnology at Johns Hopkins University, one of the leading psychedelic research institutions in the US. She received her Bachelors of Science in Biochemistry from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo in 2018.   

Aya Safieddine
Investor Relations
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Aya manages communications, investors relations and podcast & media production for Empath.  

Aya is passionate about the healing power of psychedelics and believes in their potential to transform medicine. Aya previously worked in investor relations at Health Catalyst Capital.

Aya recently completed her Undergraduate degree in Communications with a minor in Psychology at Northeastern University.

Arye Lipman
Scientific Advisor
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Arye is a General Partner at MarsBio, a seed stage venture fund based in Los Angeles that invests in biotech and deeptech companies.

He holds a degree in Molecular and Cellular Biology from UCLA and began his startup career as a founding member of ImaginAb, a UCLA spinout with several drug candidates in clinical trials.  

Arye leverages his deep experience operating and investing in drug development to support technical due diligence at Empath.  

Arye has a life-long interest in psychedelic pharmacology and is most interested in startups developing novel psychedelic molecules.

Danielle Strachman
Venture Advisor
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Danielle is a cofounder and General Partner of 1517 Fund, an early-stage vc that invests in hackers, makers and scientists working outside of universities and tracked institutions. 1517’s portfolio includes unicorns like Loom and Luminar.

Prior to 1517, Danielle was a founding team member and Program Director of The Thiel Fellowship. Danielle worked alongside Peter Thiel for nearly 5 years in this role, identifying and mentoring young founders. 10 years and 226 Fellows later, Thiel Fellowship companies are worth over $30 Billion, not including 2014 Thiel fellow Vitalik Buterin’s Ethereum.

Vaughn Blake
Venture Advisor
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Vaughn is a partner at Blue Bear Capital and investor in frontier technologies.

Nancy Fechnay
Venture Advisor
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Nancy is a Managing Partner at Alumni Ventures, a Venture Partner at Gaingels and Republic, and founder of multiple companies, including a mental health nonprofit. Nancy holds two masters degrees including an MBA from Duke, and brings a wealth of expertise as both a founder and investor to Empath.

Nancy is a mental health and psychedelic medicine advocate and has spoken at Psychedelic conferences such as Wonderland Miami.