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From left to right: S. “Soma” Somasegar, Julie Sandler, Hope Cochran, Daniel Li. (Madrona Venture Group Photo)

Madrona Venture Group today announced three internal promotions and the hiring of a new venture partner.

Hope Cochran, a long-time Seattleite and former CFO of Clearwire, is joining the firm as a venture partner. Cochran was recently in London where she was CFO of King Digital, helping lead the Candy Crush-maker through an IPO and a $5.9 billion acquisition to Activision Blizzard last year. Cochran, Madrona’s first female venture partner, will spend time helping grow the firm’s later-stage financing programs.

Madrona also today promoted S. “Soma” Somasegar to managing director, one year after he joined the firm as a venture partner following a nearly three-decade career at Microsoft.

“He has added greatly to our existing portfolio companies with his deep, developer-centric understanding of both technological and management experience, and has also become a powerful voice internally and externally on key investment areas including DevOps, machine learning and virtual reality,” Madrona Managing Director Matt McIlwain wrote in a blog post.

Madrona made two other promotions today. Julie Sandler, who joined the firm in 2011 from Amazon and was a presidential leadership scholar last year, was promoted to partner. Sandler, GeekWire’s 2014 Geek of the Year, is the first female partner at Madrona.

“She has always been a strong and persistent voice supporting entrepreneurs and the community around us,” McIlwain wrote. “She is a steward for our investors and a mentor to a growing number of people in the Seattle region.”

Daniel Li, who joined in August 2015 as an associate, is now a senior associate.

“All of these appointments speak to the growing opportunity that Madrona sees in our region to build lasting and large technology businesses,” McIlwain wrote. “We had two successful IPOs last year — Impinj and Apptio — both of which are substantial forces not only here in the Seattle area but in the technology industry at large. In addition, the continued industry leadership of companies like Amazon and Microsoft and incredible talent in our region highlight the huge potential of our innovation ecosystem to create more great companies and products.”

Madrona marked its 20th anniversary last year. Its investments have had an outsized impact on the Seattle startup market, starting with co-founder Tom Alberg’s early investment in, and extending to companies such as Redfin, Apptio,, Peach, Smartsheet and many others.

Elise Hebb, who spent nearly a decade at Madrona as director of investor relations and business development, recently left to fellow Seattle-based VC firm Maveron. Seattle tech vet and talent expert Kerry Van Voris left her position as Madrona’s director of talent in November.

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