Graham & Walker (formerly known as Female Founders Alliance) is an early-stage venture fund on a mission to transform the face of the Nasdaq and the NYSE by investing in tomorrow’s most powerful women-founded tech companies. Graham & Walker is the brainchild of Leslie Feinzaig, who was born and raised in Costa Rica before moving to the U.S. to attend Harvard Business School on a full scholarship. A repeat two-time founder and prior technology executive, Leslie was a product leader at companies like Microsoft, a16z-backed e-commerce startup Julep Beauty, and gaming pioneer Big Fish Games (acquired by Churchill Downs) before launching her own company and experiencing firsthand the difficulty of raising venture capital as a woman. As a result, Leslie started a Facebook group to trade notes for like-minded founders in Seattle. The group ended up blossoming into a community of over 40,000 global members dedicated to the success of women and non-binary leaders in the venture ecosystem. Since then, G&W has launched a robust accelerator program, and scaled to 2,500+ startups who have collectively raised $3.5bn in venture capital. Leslie has emerged as a key voice and advisor for female founders looking to raise their first venture checks.
The fund leverages the organic, grassroots network that Female Founders Alliance created to find and back talented women and non-binary founders at the earliest stage of company creation. G&W brings investors, founders, and strategic partners together with hyper-focused virtual networking events and roundtables, as well as through their “Ready Set Raise” virtual startup accelerator program, dubbed the “Y Combinator for female founders” by TechCrunch. G&W leverages its impressive network of 40,000+ global members to curate deal flow, backing seed-stage companies in a variety of industries, including personal wellness, consumer brands, and fintech.
Why we invested
Leslie’s story of drive and tenacity blew us away the moment we first met her. When Leslie faced adversity in her own fundraising experience, especially as an outsider to the U.S. venture ecosystem as an immigrant woman from Costa Rica, she took matters into her own hands. We value her focus on community building and her goal of making it easier for other entrepreneurs to follow in her footsteps by providing the financial and social capital needed to succeed. Leslie’s knowledge of the early-stage venture market and mission of putting capital in the hands of more women resonated with Carta’s mission to create more owners in private companies. Leslie has a clear authenticity about her that resonates with LPs and founders alike. We look forward to partnering with her.