David Zilko

      Board Member, Aquamar Holdings

      Consumer (Food & Beverage)

      Experience

      Dave Zilko has been an entrepreneur for over 25 years, most notably as Vice Chairman of Ferndale-based Garden Fresh Gourmet. Dave’s primary responsibilities at Garden Fresh were sales and strategy, and he helped usher the company to $110 million in revenue before engineering its sale to The Campbell’s Soup Company for almost a quarter billion dollars.

      Dave subsequently wrote a book detailing how he and his partners built Garden Fresh. Entitled “Irrational Persistence; Seven Secrets That Turned a Bankrupt Startup into a $231 million Business,” the book was published by Wiley & Sons, who distributed it nationally where it enjoyed time on USA Today’s best seller list.

      Dave currently serves as CEO of a plant-based protein brand he co-founded, The Skinny Butcher, and as Chairman of FUEL Leadership, an emerging digital media property specializing in the university communication space.

      Dave has been an Operating Partner at Huron Capital for close to ten years and serves on several boards. Dave was also recently awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Entrepreneurs Association.

      Education

      B.S. in Finance from Michigan State University; M.B.A. in Marketing from The George Washington University.

      Board Affiliations

      Dave serves as a board member for Aquamar and formerly served as a board member for Victoria Fine Foods.