Maria Salamanca - Champion of the consumer

Maria Salamanca

Champion of the consumer

An advocate for diversity in venture capital and beyond

Maria Salamanca recently joined Ulu but has been a friend of the firm for many years. Maria, through Unshackled Ventures, and Ulu Fund III have co-invested together four times in companies Allocate, Formally, Parfait, and Syndicate. In addition, Maria and Miriam have known each other since Maria entered venture in 2015. Ulu actively recruited Maria twice before to no avail and we are delighted to say that the third times the charm.

​​Previous to Ulu, Maria was Partner at Unshackled Ventures, a fund that fills a unique space in the entrepreneurial ecosystem, funding teams with immigrant founders at the earliest stage of pre-seed. Maria joined the fund in 2015, during her time she invested in over 75 companies and evaluated more than 8,000 deals. In 2018, she was the first Latina named Forbes 30 Under 30 for Venture Capital, Business Insider’s Under 30 Rising Stars, and 2022 NVCA Venture Forward Rising Stars to Watch. Her support for the Latinx community also won her the 2017 California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Shark of Year.

Maria has spent the last decade of her career as an advocate for diversity in venture capital and beyond. Previous to joining Unshackled, Maria worked at an immigration lobbying group founded by Mark Zuckerberg, Ron Conway, Bill Gates, and other tech leaders aiming to lobby for comprehensive immigration reform and criminal justice reform. She worked closely with the President and Chief of Staff in raising the organization’s first $75M.

Currently, she is President and founding member of LatinxVC,​​a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to increasing and retaining the number of Latinx venture capital professionals in the industry. The organization is also the first one to provide an annual report on the state of Latinx diversity in venture capital.

She attended UC Berkeley where she studied Political Science and Legal Studies with a minor in Public Policy.

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