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Cat Hernandez


Cat is on a mission to help founders discover and leverage their “people” superpowers on their path to building great companies.

Cat believes that a big part of startup success relies on a company’s ability to hire, engage and develop the best people. Period. As Operating Partner at Primary Ventures, and a people evangelist by trade, Cat plays a critical role in shaping the founder journey, especially when it comes to delivering on Primary’s promise of impactful post-investment support. That type of guidance comes in many forms, but it is centered around making sure the entrepreneurs we’re lucky enough to back have access to supercharged networks and timely operating advice. Now more than ever, companies understand the importance of aligning people strategy with business strategy, and that’s a shift in mentality for which Cat will always advocate.

Prior to venture, Cat spent a decade in B2B land, most recently supporting growth at Chartbeat, a Made in NY tech startup that enabled media organizations to understand and harness genuine audience engagement. She led the charge on all people-related initiatives over three years of explosive growth, and credits that time as one of the best startup experiences of her career.

In her spare time, Cat also leads due diligence for PeopleTech Partners, an early-stage advisory and investment group that brings forward-thinking people leaders together to accelerate the growth of companies in its portfolio. When she's not fixated on startup-building, Cat dabbles in scotch appreciation, late-night karaoke and a regular boutique fitness regimen (in that order).

The Rest of the Story

I was born in the Philippines, but spent most of my formative years as an expat kid in the Middle East. Every day I am grateful for an upbringing that was grounded in diversity and global perspective. Most importantly, I am the product of a determined man who rose above his circumstances and built a better life for our family so that I could, in turn, build my own version of the American Dream. A million shukrans would not be enough to thank my parents for what they’ve given me.

Stuff You Wouldn't Know

  • First Job: In college, I worked for the Office of Admissions and eventually oversaw the university’s tour guide program. The most interesting thing I did while working there was filling in to be Champ (our mascot) for an on-campus info session with hundreds of prospective students. At a cool 5’ tall, I barely fit into the costume!
  • Greatest Life Experience: Jumping out of a plane, afraid for your life, has a funny way of shocking you into being aware and thankful for the things that matter most. It's also just physically invigorating!
  • Most Humbling Life Experience: Every time I surround myself with inspiring women - especially in tech - who are beaming examples of what it means to be unapologetically strong and successful. I'm fortunate enough to call some of these women my closest friends.
  • Random Fact: I sing a mean karaoke song, and wish I had the guts to audition for something like American Idol (or change careers entirely and be a kindergarten teacher).