The San Diego 500, The Book of Influential Business Leaders, is the market’s most comprehensive product of people you should know in the business community. The 500 includes business leaders and executives who have founded or are running significant companies in terms of number of jobs, key products and services, experts who raise the level of the industry here and beyond and those who lead in the business community. The 500 is selected by the San Diego Business Journal newsroom.

Cathy Pucher

Executive Director, San Diego State University Zahn Innovation Platform Launchpad

Cathy Pucher, executive director at San Diego State University’s Zahn Innovation Platform Launchpad, uses her 20-plus years of experience in the technology industry to help aspiring entrepreneurs at the college’s incubator. The center hosts an annual competition called the Zahn Challenge to identify and reward the most promising ideas for new businesses. Since the center’s launch, a number of companies have launched their businesses and the startups there have collectively received more than $2.3 million in early stage funding. Pucher previously has worked for established and for emerging technology companies.

ALMA MATER: UC San Diego

IN ON THE START: She was the first executive director at the San Diego site of incubator EvoNexus.