David P. Willard, Founder & CEO of 52 Capital Partners - Photo.jpg

David P. Willard

Founder & Chief Executive Officer

David P. Willard is the Founder & Chief Executive Officer of 52 Capital Partners, LLC. David founded the Firm in May 2018. David is responsible for all major aspects of the Firm’s executive management, strategy, client development, investment process and thought leadership. During his career, David has executed and participated in consequential M&A transactions and other landmark corporate deals at firms in the United States, Europe and Asia, including Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP, completing 53 deals totaling over $150 billion in aggregate deal value. David has advised Fortune 500® and multi-national companies across all major industry verticals. An internationally-recognized expert on China’s financial and capital markets and fluent in Mandarin, David is among a select group of Western business leaders to recognize fully over two decades ago the significance of China’s growing interconnectedness with the global economy. He holds a J.D., cum laude, from New York University School of Law and received his A.B., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Princeton University. David resides in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife and son.

52 Capital Partners, LLC 2018 – present
Founder & Chief Executive Officer
52 Capital Advisors, LLC 2018 – present
Founder & Managing Partner
52 Capital Group, LLC 2018 – present
Founder & Managing Partner
Sage Capital LLC 2017 – 2018
Vice President
Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP 2012 – 2017
Corporate Associate
M&A Group 2012 – 2015
Banking Group 2015 – 2016
Securities Group 2016 – 2017
Committee on Capital Markets Regulation 2013
Office of the District Attorney, Los Angeles County 2011
Law Clerk
Girard Gibbs 2009 – 2010
Securities Group, Litigation Analyst
Pantera Capital Management LP 2007 – 2008
Investment Committee Member, Analyst, Portfolio Manager of Foreign Exchange Fund
Goldman, Sachs & Co. 2006 – 2007
Investment Banking Division (London), Financial Analyst
Real Estate Investment Banking Group 2006
UK Coverage Group 2007
The White House – Executive Office of the President 2006
Office of Intergovernmental Affairs
Council on Foreign Relations 2006
Asia Studies Program, Researcher
Delegation of the European Union to China 2005
Office of Political Affairs, Analyst
Princeton-in-Asia Fellowship 2004 – 2005

Other Affiliations
Member, National Committee on United States-China Relations 2016 – present
Mentor-in-Residence, Yale Law School 2019 – present
Board Member, St. Matthew’s Episcopal Day School Foundation 2019 – present
Chairman, Community Service – Princeton Club of Northern California 2019 – present
Member, Advisory Committee – USS Gerald R. Ford CVN 78 Aircraft 2015 – 2016
Carrier Commissioning Project
Advisor, Capital Innovators 2017 – present
Member, Endowment Investment Committee – St. Louis University 2019 – present
High School
Alumni Board Member, St. Louis University High School 2015 – present
Guest Lecturer on International M&A, Private Equity and China 2018 – present
Princeton University
Harvard Business School
Yale Law School
Haas School of Business at University of California-Berkeley
New York University School of Law
Washington University School of Law
Leavey School of Business at Santa Clara University

New York University School of Law, J.D., cum laude 2013
Princeton University, A.B., magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa 2006
Tsinghua University, Inter-University Program for Chinese Language 2004 – 2005
Beijing Normal University, Princeton-in-Beijing Chinese Language 2002