Team


Laurel Buckner
SVP, Managing Director

Laurel Buckner is Senior Vice President and Managing Director of ATN Ventures. She is focused on new and emerging technologies that bring insight and new business strategies to ATN in the U.S. and abroad.

Previously, Laurel built and ran the corporate venture group for GCI, Alaska’s largest publicly traded telecommunications provider, and focused her investments on software, telecommunications and cloud computing. In her role as a corporate venture investor, she represented GCI on the board of Telesphere (sold to Vonage) and Bluebox (sold to IBM) and is currently a board observer for ZipWhip. She is on the Board of Fireminds and Ahana Renewables.

Prior to GCI, Laurel was an M&A lawyer at Dell, leading a team of lawyers in the acquisition of many venture-backed software companies. She joined Dell after the 2012 acquisition of SonicWALL, a security-focused technology company in the Silicon Valley. Laurel was SonicWALL’s General Counsel and Corporate Secretary and played an instrumental role in the sale to Dell. Prior to joining SonicWALL, Laurel was the Associate General Counsel and Head of Human Resources at Seattle start-up Aventail. In 2007, she was a key team member who facilitated the sale of Aventail to SonicWALL. Before joining Aventail, she was in private practice with the law firm Davis Wright Tremaine.

Laurel received her J.D. from the University of Denver, an LL.M. in Taxation from the University of Washington and a B.A. from The Colorado College. She is a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors.


Adrian Smith
Venture Partner

Adrian is a Venture Partner with ATN Ventures investing in technologies and services that are synergistic to ATN’s core businesses.

Adrian also is a Partner at Ignition Partners. Adrian invested in telecommunications and mobile companies and represented Ignition as a director on the board of Twisted Pair Solutions (acquired by Motorola Solutions, Inc.) and was an observer on the board of mFoundry (acquired by FIS). Adrian also represented Ignition on the board of Melodeo (acquired by HP) and was the shareholder representative for Swype (acquired by Nuance).

In addition, Adrian chaired the Entrepreneur Advisory Board at the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington and has been active as a Venture Partner for a number of corporate venture capital groups.

Prior to Ignition, Adrian spent twelve years in leading technology roles at Nextlink, AT&T Wireless, McCaw Cellular Communication and British Telecom Research Laboratories. Adrian’s responsibilities have included the radio architecture and evolution of the LMDS broadband fixed wireless technology, the browser transport mechanism for integrated cellular voice and data solutions and the TDMA air interface design and specification.

Adrian joined British Telecom Research Laboratories in the UK in 1989 and worked on the ETSI standards for the Digital European Cordless Telecommunication (DECT) technology, developing DECT testbeds for voice, data and wireless video applications.

Adrian is the author of a number of patents associated with cellular technology as well as co-author of the book IS-136 TDMA Technology, Economics and Services.


Justin Leon
Investment Principal

Justin leads the evaluation and execution of investment opportunities and works with our operating companies on strategic initiatives.

Prior to joining ATN, Justin worked on the Corporate Strategy & Development team for Nuance Communications, a publicly traded software company. At Nuance, Justin executed over $1B of acquisitions in the healthcare IT, mobile, and enterprise software verticals.

Justin earned a degree in corporate finance from Bentley College and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth.