Learn more about angel investing in Arizona from leaders of two of the most active groups in the state. Curtis Gunn, Chairman of Desert Angels in Tucson and Jim Goulka, Managing Director at Arizona Tech Investors will share how they work together, what differentiates the groups, how they became angel investors, and most importantly, why they chose to invest in a company.
Arizona Tech Investors
James Goulka is Managing Director of Arizona Tech Investors (ATI).
ATI is comprised of about 90 men and women who invest their own resources in disruptive startups in information technology and life sciences. Since its inception in 2007, ATI members have invested, directly, through entities and through three funds, in 56 companies, 46 of which are Arizona-based.
Goulka previously served as CEO of software companies NetSelector Inc (sold to Apple, Inc), Jump-Start Solutions, and bid4real.com. Additionally, he was CEO of the National Technology Transfer Center, which commercialized IP developed in all 10 NASA labs and parts of the Department of Defense; the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture, and Taliesin Preservation, Inc.; and served as COO and CFO of Encyclopaedia Britannica Inc. and its world-wide subsidiaries. At Britannica, Goulka was responsible for digitizing the product line. Goulka began his career in corporate finance and private equity at JP Morgan Chase and Citibank.
Goulka is a governing or advisory board member of several ATI portfolio companies. Previously he was Chairman of Merriam-Webster Dictionaries and most of Britannica’s world-wide subsidiaries, and a board member of various early stage companies. His not-for-profit board involvement included Steppenwolf Theater Company, Chicago Shakespeare, the Dallas Zoological Society, and the Associate Board of the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University, as well as multiple social service boards. He has also served on elected school and township boards.
Goulka holds two degrees from Yale.
Curtis Gunn is Chairman of the Desert Angels, a very active angel investment group of accredited investors in Tucson, Az that review presentations from early stage startup companies looking for potential funding. Prior to this role, Curtis traveled the world competing as a professional cyclist riding for both US and Australian-based Professional Cycling teams. Previous to his life as a professional athlete, he was an entrepreneur founding and operating companies based in retail, Internet, healthcare and real estate. As an angel investor, Curtis has invested in over 45 different companies across a broad spectrum of industries, technologies, and geographies. Curtis serves on the board of Startup Tucson and was formerly on the board of the Angel Capital Association.