About Teneo

Ten years ago several friends and I sat at a restaurant in Dupont Circle in Washington, DC, thinking seriously about what we wanted to do with our lives in order to make the world a better place.

We knew one thing to be true: a community of peers that would challenge us, equip us, and support us through living a life of purpose was essential. It was that spirit that Teneo was born.
We chose the name Teneo from its Latin origin which translated in Latin means ‘to grasp’ or ‘to endure.’ After all, that is what we aimed for: to grasp a set of ideas and then to endure in their defense over our lifetime.
We began with a set of principles that reflect our best understanding of how to advance the human condition. We quickly learned that these methods and approaches were anchors we must also practice intentionally within our our community.
Allow me to highlight three values that have emerged as cornerstones of our community:

  • Curiosity: though we share a few fundamental beliefs, we have healthy disagreements on a wide range of topics. The key to building a healthy pluralist community is curiosity: that amidst disagreement our posture is one of inquiry and interest, not one of attack.
  • Gratitude: though we lament a wide range of the policies and outcomes we see around us, we continue to find things on a daily basis for which we are grateful.
  • Hospitality: our community has not been built through giant conferences and hotel ballrooms. Rather, it is built in living rooms, kitchens, and back porches. The spirit of hospitality pervades the community to create an openness to each other and generosity to all.
    A decade into this adventure, the Teneo community has flourished only because of our 100-plus volunteers who have served in regional or national leadership positions over this time. We have functioned mostly like a medium-sized organization largely through the work of men and women who make sacrifices for something they believe is bigger than themselves. For them I am eternally grateful.
    We have been surprised and encouraged by the fruit produced through Teneo in its first decade. Bill Gates’ old adage has rung true: ‘You always overestimate what you can get done in a year and underestimate what you can get done in ten years.’
    As I think ahead to our next decade, I’m excited for this community and the impact it can have on this country and world in which we are so fortunate to live.

    Evan Baehr
    Founder and CEO,

Our Leadership: The Board

  • Brandon Simmons

    Silicon Valley Executive and Investor; Teneo Board Chairman

    Brandon serves in a global leadership role at an energy technology company in Silicon Valley. He is also an angel investor and was previousl…

  • Evan Baehr

    Founder, CEO, Teneo

    Evan is the Executive Chairman of Teneo, where he passionately works to advance the ideas of modern conservatism. Previously he cofounded Ab…

  • Allison Lee Pillinger Choi

    Full-time mom and author

    Allison Lee Pillinger Choi is a full-time mom to two preschoolers and writes on right-of-center politics/policy. She is the author of Bleedi…

  • Sam Corcos

    Founder, CarDash

    Sam Corcos is a founder and former head of technology at CarDash (cardash.com), a Y Combinator company that seeks to make automotive repair …

  • Steve Duvernay

    Attorney, Benbrook Law Group

    Steve Duvernay is an attorney with Benbrook Law Group in Sacramento, where he specializes in constitutional litigation in state and federal …

  • John Coleman

    Senior Executive, Financial Services

    John Coleman is an executive in financial services based in Atlanta. John's past experience includes asset management and consulting. He's a…

  • Lila Ontiveros

    VP of Business Development, Freedom Solar

    Lila Ontiveros grew up in Kingwood, Texas. She graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy and Cornell University, where she was a Meinig Scholar…

  • Paul Vronsky

    Partner, Technology Investment Firm

    Paul Vronsky is a partner at a technology investment firm based in San Francisco. He helps oversee firm strategy and management. Previously,…

  • Hillary Waldron

    VP, MLM International

    Hillary Waldron is Vice President at MLM International, a Washington-based company specializing in the international distribution of ammunit…

  • Salen Churi

    Founder and General Partner, Trust Ventures

    Salen is the founder and general partner of Trust Ventures, a venture capital fund that invests in and supports startups in heavily-regulate…

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What They Are Saying

Teneo is the Olympic Village of conservatism.

Hugh Hewitt Author, radio host, lawyer.

I don’t know how we can win our country back without Teneo.

Dennis Prager Radio host, author, and professor.

As a new member of the United States Congress, what frustrates me most is a sense that we are not having a discussion about the most important issues that we face as a country. If there were ever a time for a new generation of leaders to emerge to break through the political impasse, the time is now. Indeed, Teneo’s mission has never been more important—and I’m honored to be a member.

Mike Gallagher Teneo Member and youngest U.S. Congressman

I draw inspiration, humility, and conviction from the Teneo family. I’m inspired by the values embraced and love of country shared. I’m humbled by personal challenges overcome and achievements earned. For these reasons, I’m convinced that Teneo is energizing a refreshed and greater generation of conservative leaders. We lead not only in politics, but also in our careers, families, and communities. As a ’lone’ conservative in NYC, Teneo helps me forge a vision for bringing bleeding heart conservatism into my city.

Allison Lee Pillinger Choi Teneo Member and Author, Bleeding Heart Conservatives: Why It’s Good To Be Right

Teneo is unlike any other organization in America. It is a community of like-minded young people from every industry, every corner, and every walk of life who have three things in common: incredible stories, skyrocketing careers, and a commitment to advancing conservative ideas. Teneo has incubated a future for conservatism across every institution of society.

Akash Chougule Teneo Member and Policy Director, Americans for Prosperity

Teneo has thrived for a decade by capitalizing on the diversity of the group and maximizing the potential of the individual through not just a network but the genuine community we’ve built. To advance the cause of conservatism and strengthen this great nation we must first strengthen the person, which we strive to do in triumphs and hardships alike. Without question, Teneo is the most rewarding and beneficial group in which I’ve had the privilege of taking part.

Natalie Burkholder Teneo Member and Founder, Girls Guide to Guns

The shared love for America, and the sense of purpose and drive to make it better through the restoration or application of conservative principles, set Teneo apart. So does the remarkably supportive nature of the community, where members from all walks of life across the country—who themselves are exceptional leaders—freely and goodheartedly welcome each other in their respective cities, and serve as resources to one another on everything from weighty professional and family matters to the everyday blocking and tackling of life.

Dave Trulio Teneo Member and Vice President at a major aerospace & defense company

Teneo builds strong connective tissue among conservatives from different backgrounds, professions, and areas of the country, empowering them to use their connections to learn, generate new ideas and initiatives, and execute on them.

Fred Yarger Teneo Member and Colorado Solicitor General

Teneo: The Basics

Teneo is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that educates, connects and equips a network of outstanding leaders working to develop practical solutions to pressing global issues. Through events and retreats with top business leaders and leading policy experts, Teneo provides opportunities for members to learn about and discuss both key issues facing our country and world as well as five pillar ideas: (1) limited, constitutional government; (2) individual liberty and free enterprise; (3) robust civic society; (4) a strong national defense; and (5) belief in a transcendent order, whether founded in tradition, philosophy, or theology.

Teneo takes no positions on legislation or candidates.