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CONTACT: Patrick Ross or Amy Smorodin
August 1, 2005
(202) 289-8928
Tom Perkins to Give
Aspen Chairman's Address

Silicon Valley Founding Father Helped Build Venture Capital Empire

WASHINGTON D.C. - One of the giants of Silicon Valley and a pioneer in the venture capital industry, Tom Perkins, will give the Chairman's Dinner address August 23rd at this year's Progress & Freedom Foundation Aspen Summit. Co-founder with Eugene Kleiner of Kleiner Perkins, the most successful venture capital firm in the history of the U.S. high-tech industry, he even has his own law named after him, Perkins' Law -- that technical risk is inversely proportional to market risk.

"I can't imagine a speaker more qualified to discuss the challenges of the digital age than the man who helped create it," says PFF President Ray Gifford. "Silicon Valley wouldn't be what it is today without venture capital, and when Perkins co-founded Kleiner Perkins in 1972 with a modest $8 million fund, the venture capital industry barely existed. Perkins' rapid success with Tandem Computers and Genentech reinvented the way the high-tech sector would grow and develop." The Chairman's Dinner is the highlight of each year's Aspen Summit, hosted by PFF's chairman, Dr. George "Jay" Keyworth II.

Prior to co-founding the venture capital firm that bears his name, Perkins worked for Hewlett-Packard. Later he was asked by David Packard to join Optics Technology. In 1965 Perkins founded University Laboratories, which merged into Spectra-Physics. He re-joined HP and served as the first General Manager of HP's computer divisions. He left HP in 1972 to co-found Kleiner Perkins, and in 1978 they added Frank Caufield and Brook Byers. Perkins became chairman of Genentech in 1976, a post he held until 1990. He also has been chairman of Acuson and Tandem Computers, and served as a director of Applied Materials, Compaq Computer, Corning Glass Works, HP, Hybritech, LSI Logic, News Corporation, Philips Electronics NV, Spectra-Physics and Symantec. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in electronic engineering and Harvard University in business administration, he is perhaps the first Aspen Summit speaker to have been knighted by the King of Norway.

Each year CEOs, top government officials and academics gather in the Colorado Rockies to discuss the digital era and the intersection of free markets and public policy. The theme of this year's Aspen Summit August 21-23 is "Building a Digital Ownership Society: The Place for Property and Commons."

Perkins joins a distinguished list of keynoters this year. Those include Sun Microsystems President Jonathan Schwartz, Warner Music Chairman and CEO Edgar Bronfman, Jr., Intuit President and CEO Steve Bennett, Nortel Networks Vice Chairman and CEO William Owens and Intellectual Ventures Co-Founder Nathan Myhrvold. Other prominent executives on the agenda include Verizon General Counsel William Barr, SBC President Forrest Miller, Vonage Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Citron, NCTA President Kyle McSlarrow, Hewlett-Packard Chief Strategy & Technology Officer Shane Robison, T-Mobile Vice President of Government Affairs Thomas Sugrue, FX Networks President John Landgraf, Clear Channel Executive Vice President Andrew Levin, Paramount Network Television President David Stapf, Microsoft Vice President for IP and Licensing Marshall Phelps and American Intellectual Property Law Association President William Rooklidge.

Details about the 2005 PFF Aspen Summit, scheduled for August 21st - August 23rd, can be found on our web site and registration can be performed online. Media as always are welcome to attend for free, and should contact Patrick Ross or Amy Smorodin at 202-289-8928, or and, respectively.

The Progress & Freedom Foundation is a market-oriented think tank that studies the digital revolution and its implications for public policy. It is a 501(c)(3) research & educational organization.



The Progress & Freedom Foundation