Respondent
Colker, James
Interview Date
September 30, 1996
Abstract
Respondent Venture Capitalist, born 1928.
[T1S1] Respondent owner of venture capital business, founder of Pittsburgh High Technology Council (PHTC). Respondent talks about his childhood; growing up in Morningside; schooling, not very religious; majoring in physics at University of Pittsburgh; working for RCA then General Electric in 1952. Respondent compares life in Morningside to Mt. Lebanon; Respondent's interest in science; summer jobs; lack of religious life in Mt. Lebanon. Respondent mentions uncle Charlie Colker founder of Beth Shalom; Respondent's Bar Mitzvah. Respondent talks about courtship, marriage to wife Janice Seiner; Janice's family, her father's business Seiner and Colker; her interest in painting; their children. Respondent continues talking about his career; working as electrical engineer for Union Switch in 1953; working for J. E. Fecker in 1957; starting own business Goez Optical Company; selling company; leaving company in 1987. Respondent describes in detail new business venture that invests in small technology companies; his role in company. Respondent lists award he has received. Respondent mentions founding PHTC in 1983. Respondent talks about children's childhood; boys' Bar Mitzvahs; family recreational activities. Respondent mentions business involvements including board positions on several Pittsburgh companies. Respondent describes his support for Tom Murphy, Governor Casey. Respondent mentions his concerns with economic growth of this area; Respondent's business accomplishments.
[T1S2] (Very poor sound quality first ten minutes) Respondent gives family history; their early life in America; Respondent's father's high school life. Respondent mentions Janice's family history including father's immigration, service during WWII, starting business, his marriage. Respondent offers impressions on past mayors.
Subjects
Business; Industries; Casey, Robert P. (Robert Patrick), 1932-2000; General Electric Company; Goez Optical Company; Murphy, Tom, 1944-; Pittsburgh High Technology Council (Pa.); Venture capital
Birth Date
1928
City
Pittsburgh, PA
Profession
CEO
Work
Venture Fund
Residence
Morningside
Length (hours)
1
Interviewer1
Weiss, Selma
Interviewer2
Braun, Howard
Indexer
Frisque
Collateral Materials
Box 100 FF 51
Identifier
ais196440.083
Rights
All rights reserved. University of Pittsburgh