Ms. Gabriella Drainey Zielke
Co-Founder & Partner, Tech Wildcatters
Gabriella Draney Zielke is Cofounder and Partner of Tech Wildcatters, a Forbes Top 10 seed accelerator that has funded over 150 startups through its flagship program, and spinoffs Health Wildcatters and EMERGE. She is passionate about helping creators connect the dots and has fostered a global ecosystem to do this. With a diverse group of mentors, investors, executives, and entrepreneurs who are on speed dial, Gabriella is willing to go the extra mile to help up and coming businesses become viable and scalable.
Prior to starting Tech Wildcatters in 2009, Gabriella was with HP Growth Partners, an early stage venture fund in Dallas, where she served on the Board of CelAccess (acq by Assa Abloy). Before attending business school at SMU, Gabriella was a part of the founding team of Bitwise Solutions, which built the first commercially available scheduling system for the fractional business aviation industry. She then started a specialty foods business to address the needs of those with dietary restrictions. It is this real world experience and appreciation for having skin in the game that makes her so valuable to the innovation ecosystem. Her latest product is the Innovation Lifecycle Management platform Epicunity, which helps bring ecosystems, programs, resources, and reporting together in one system to rapidly scale new products and businesses.
Gabriella received her MBA in Strategy & Entrepreneurship from Southern Methodist University as a Cox Distinguished Merit Scholar, during which she interned for Silver Creek Ventures. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from University of North Texas with a BBA in Finance.
Gabriella currently serves on the Board of UNT’s School of Arts and Sciences, and the Greater Dallas Workforce Solutions Board, where she is part of the audit committee. She lives in Dallas, and if you can’t find her behind her laptop, she’ll most definitely be kite boarding, running or on an airplane to a far off land.