John R. Sylla, a lawyer based in California, is an entrepreneur and works in venture capital.
He has recently been active with projects in energy, software, education, marketing and entertainment, as well as pro-bono projects in multiple capacities (e.g., founder, director, officer, lawyer, producer, consultant, investor). He has also served as lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School since 2004, and guest lecturer at the South Western University of Finance and Economics in Chengdu, People's Republic of China.
Sylla began his career in venture capital law with the Cooley Godward firm in Silicon Valley. He then joined a telecommunications networking venture, where he first worked on legal matters including strategic alliances, distribution, securities, general corporate, and employment. He was then sent to Europe in a succession of business roles directing marketing, business development and sales, culminating in the role of Assistant VP Europe. Sylla then became an entrepreneur, starting, growing, and occasionally selling companies in telecommunications, wireless, consumer products, education, and energy. He recently orchestrated and served as lead plaintiff in a stockholder derivative action in which the court after trial ruled for him on behalf of shareholders and against directors of a Delaware corporation.
Sylla received an AB degree in Engineering and Applied Sciences cum laude from Harvard University in 1981 and a JD-MBA with honors from the University of Chicago in 1985. He has also served on the Visiting Committee of the Law School.
His research interests include venture management, securities prices, currency markets, lawsuit finance, and economic analysis of business and industry structure.
2013 - 2014 Course Schedule
||Law and Management
Film, international affairs and cultures, science.