Press Release: ZinnStarter

Press Release: ZinnStarter

Ray Zinn’s “ZinnStarter” Program Expands Nationally, Launching at San Jose State University, Utah Valley University, West Virginia University

Colleges and entrepreneur students awarded Zinn mentorship and funding to develop and launch an entirely new start up companies

September 14, 2017 – SAN JOSE, CA. – Silicon Valley’s longest serving CEO Ray Zinn, has now nationally launched the ZinnStarter program at three additional colleges – San Jose State University, Utah Valley University and West Virginia University, providing the financial and mentoring support for students to launch new products and companies. The program is designed to allow students to create go-to-market plans, finish prototypes, and ultimately to be evaluated on the performance of their use of funding.

These universities are the second, third and fourth programs that Ray Zinn, founder and former CEO of Micrel, Inc., and longest serving CEO of a Silicon Valley company, has selected to expand the ZinnStarters program provides a combination of financial and business mentorship by way of Ray’s experience.

“These remarkable entrepreneurial programs have a valuable and consistent discipline of innovation and entrepreneurship that matches the vision, values and culture of my leadership and experience, detailed in my “Tough Things First” book, podcast and leadership platform,” said Ray Zinn. “I’m thrilled with the opportunity to work with directly with the students and facility in a direct capacity to plan and facilitate the creation of a new company.”

In addition to the capital investment, Zinn invests via direct student mentoring. The Universities recruit experienced entrepreneurs and executive to coach participating ZinnStarter students on important sustainable business topics such as including servant leadership, crafting lasting corporate cultures, and creating companies that last the ages. The ZinnStarter program was originally launched at Virginia Tech in 2016.

Ray Zinn is the longest serving CEO in Silicon Valley, having founded and led Micrel Semiconductors for 37 years . Ray’s humanistic leadership principles, keys to building enduring businesses and conservative management are expressed in his book, Tough Things First (

About San Jose State University’s Lucas College and Graduate School of Business

The Lucas College and Graduate School of Business provides the resources, skills, and opportunities for students to succeed in the Silicon Valley—one of the most thriving, competitive and innovative economic regions in the world—and beyond. The College has over 5000 undergraduate Business students in 13 concentrations, including an interdisciplinary concentration in Entrepreneurship. Its world-class Centers and Institutes support the student experience with enhanced education and networking with high caliber, local professionals in a wide range of industries.

About West Virginia University College of Business and Economics

The West Virginia Collegiate Business Plan Competition is hosted by the BrickStreet Center, which operates out of the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics. The event is starting its 12th year.


PR: Tracey Parry,