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Lowenstein Sandler LLP

Kathi A. Rawnsley

Kathi A. Rawnsley

Managing Partner, Palo Alto


  • Corporate
  • Privacy & Cybersecurity
  • Patent Counseling & Prosecution
  • Capital Markets & Securities

WSG Practice Industries


Lowenstein Sandler LLP
California, U.S.A.


As a startup specialist who has nurtured dozens of fledgling companies through their early stages, Kathi sees her job as part lawyer and part coach. Many of her clients are entrepreneurs dealing with new and often unfamiliar challenges. In helping them work through the myriad complexities of founding a technology company, many with legal implications, she regularly finds herself answering questions such as "Is this normal?" "Is that right?," and "What do you suggest?"

Kathi's background amply equips her to answer these questions. Before joining the firm, she served as regional counsel (and for a short while, acting general counsel) of Intel Capital, the venture capital arm of the technology giant and one of the world's most active venture investors, where she played a key role in substantial investments in a wide range of startups.

Steeped in the no-nonsense business culture of Silicon Valley, Kathi understands entrepreneurs and the pressures they face. She knows from long experience that the company is their "baby" and that their roles change once they accept outside investors. From that point on, they are in the unfamiliar position of having board members to whom they must answer, and Kathi is adept at helping them make the adjustment so they can work effectively in their new circumstances. She helps with their financing. She negotiates their contracts. She helps them think through issues related to building a team, growing beyond beta, and putting together scenarios around an eventual exit. Kathi is also an active player in the startup community. She was a co-founder of VentureCrushFG (formerly known as FirstGrowthVC), which provides a formal mentoring program and peer group for high-potential tech entrepreneurs.

Kathi believes in collaborative, as opposed to adversarial, lawyering. To her, winning every last point is less important than reaching a solution that results in a win for everyone. A large number of now-successful companies have received the benefits of this approach.

Bar Admissions



Santa Clara University School of Law (J.D. 1995), cum laude
University of Vermont (B.A. 1988) 
Areas of Practice

Capital Markets & Securities | Corporate | Patent Counseling & Prosecution | Privacy & Cybersecurity | Seed Stage Investing & Startups | Technology & Media Transactions | The Tech Group | Venture Capital & Tech M&A | Venture Capital, Angel Investing, And M&A

Professional Career

Significant Accomplishments

Represented Andreessen Horowitz in connection with its investment in Zulily.

Represented Advance Publications (Condé Nast) in connection with its investment in Rent the Runway.

Represented Continuuity Inc. (now Cask) in its seed and Series A Preferred Stock financings.

Represented VigLink in its Series A and Series B Preferred Stock financings.

Represented BirchBox in its acquisition of Paris-based JolieBox.

Speaking Engagements

Kathi Rawnsley will speak on a panel entitled "Key Investment Trends in Venture Capital" with Buddy Arnheim of Perkins Coie LLP and Curtis L. Mo of DLA Piper LLP. The full-day program will provide attendees with a deep dive into current venture capital market conditions and the changing legal environment. Panelists will address early stage investments, series FF preferred stock, dual class common stock, and other founder stock structures. The discussion will also cover crowdfunding, current market terms for investments, and growth equity.

VentureCrushSF is an invite-only event created by the Tech Group at Lowenstein Sandler and led by the Tech Group's Chair, Ed Zimmerman, the Palo Alto Managing Partner, Kathi Rawnsley, and colleagues from Lowenstein Sandler's California and New York offices. With the help of some great venture investor co-hosts, VentureCrushSF brings together founders, tech executives and investors for a series of small discussions relevant to the tech community. We then invite even more tech industry insiders to a big party featuring a live performance, incredible wine and food, and some wonderful winemaker guests.

The Tech Group will co-host its next VentureCrushATX with Shasta Ventures and Capital Factory. The topic for this program is “Bridging the Physical and Digital World” with panel discussions on AR & Computer Vision and Blockchains & ICOs. The speaker line up will be announced soon.

VentureCrushATX, based in Austin, TX, is a series that features networking, panels and small group sessions with VCs, angels, startups and others in the tech industry.

Professional Associations

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation in Silicon Valley, Board MemberSilicon Valley Walk to Cure Diabetes, ChairNVCA Model Legal Documents Annual Meeting, Co-chairCFO/In-House Counsel track, NVCA Annual Meeting, Co-organizer


    Barbie Disciplines a Brat: Playing with the Wrong Dolls Can Cost $100 Million, October 31, 2008
    Barbie Disciplines A Brat: Playing with the Wrong Dolls Can Cost $100 Million, September 2008
    Silicon Valley: Still At The Head Of The Class, January 2009

WSG's members are independent firms and are not affiliated in the joint practice of professional services. Each member exercises its own individual judgments on all client matters.

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