Irfan Syed

Irfan Ari Syed is a Austin based technology and product management professional with almost a decade of experience building digital healthcare technology. He is currently a Product Manager at the healthcare AI company, Babylon Health. He started his career as a political staffer and remains active within local city government. His diverse Austin civic efforts range from being Mayor Steve Adler’s appointee on Austin’s Taskforce for Community Engagement to serving as a commissioner representing District 6 on the Austin Technology and Telecommunications Commission. In 2016, he served as a member of President Barack Obama’s domestic advance team. Fueled by his passion for civic engagement and technology, Irfan also founded an political event aggregation platform called Stand Up Texas. He holds a bachelors degree in Biology and Chemistry from Texas State University and pursued graduate work at UT Austin’s McCombs School of Business and John’s Hopkins Whiting School of Engineering.

Matt Esber

Matthew Esber currently serves as Chairman of the Board for the Capital of Texas Media foundation.  Matt is also a Senior Counsel for Huggins Reddien LLP.  Matt Esber represents entrepreneurs, emerging growth and public companies, venture capital firms and private investors in all aspects of commercial and corporate transactions, with particular emphasis on intellectual property licensing and technology-based transactions, formation, venture capital and private equity financing transactions, mergers and acquisitions and commercial transactions.

 Prior to joining Huggins Reddien, Matt was the general counsel of ILF, LLC, a consumer products company.  He was also the general counsel for NCsoft Corporation, a leading developer and publisher of online computer games. Matt served as a corporate and securities attorney in the Palo Alto, CA and Austin, TX offices of Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, PC, where he was one of four founding attorneys.  

Matt received his law degree from the University of California - Los Angeles School of Law.  He received his BA in Political Science and Sociology from Northwestern University.

Matt grew up in Westlake, Ohio and despite attending game 7 in Oakland, CA for the Cleveland Cavalier's Championship in 2016, is still a long-suffering Browns, Indians and Cavaliers fan.

Mike Kanin

Mike Kanin is the Publisher of the Texas Observer and former CEO of Texas Media Foundation. He has a reporting background and years of media experience. His work has appeared in the Washington City Paper, the Washington Post's Express, the Boston Herald, Boston's Weekly Dig, the Austin Chronicle and the Texas Observer.