566 days ago
In 1999, at the age of 24, Tony Hsieh (pronounced Shay) sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded, to Microsoft for $265 million. He then joined us as an advisor and investor, and eventually became CEO, where he helped us grow from almost no sales to over $1 billion in gross merchandise sales annually, while simultaneously making Fortune magazines annual Best Companies to Work For list. In November 2009, Zappos.com, Inc. was acquired by Amazon.com in a deal valued at $1.2 billion on the day of closing. His first book, "Delivering Happiness", was published on June 7, 2010, and outlines his path from starting a worm farm to life at Zappos. Tony shows how a very different kind of corporate culture is a powerful model for achieving success and happiness. "Delivering Happiness" debuted at #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list and has remained on the list every week since June 2010. Most recently in October 2011, Tony was interviewed by Barbara Walters when she interviewed self-made super rich entrepreneurs. The piece included a visit to the headquarters of Zappos.com that was dubbed what "might just be the wackiest workplace in America." In addition to his responsibilities as CEO of Zappos.com, Tony is leading the "Downtown Project", a group committed to transforming downtown Las Vegas into the most community-focused large city in the world. This transformation includes the coordination of the Fall 2013 relocation of Zappos.com offices from Henderson, Nevada to downtown Las Vegas.
At age 13, Sarna suffered from ovarian cysts so painful they made her faint. Doctors couldn’t tell her if they were cancerous. She vowed to create a technology to detect ovarian cancer quickly and early. The company she now runs aims to do just that, and has raised $4.5 million from Catalyst Health Ventures, Draper Associates, and Astia, a group that assists female entrepreneurs.
Guy Kawasaki is the chief evangelist of Canva, an online graphic design tool. He is on the board of trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation, a brand ambassador for Mercedes Benz USA, and an executive fellow of the Haas School of Business (UC Berkeley). He was also the chief evangelist of Apple. He is also the author of The Art of the Start 2.0, The Art of Social Media, Enchantment, and nine other books. Kawasaki has a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA as well as an honorary doctorate from Babson College.
Tim Draper is founding partner of leading venture capital firms Draper Associates and DFJ. Venture successes include Skype, Overture, Baidu, Tesla, Theranos, Parametric Technology, Hotmail, Digidesign, Twitch.tv, and hundreds of others. As an advocate for entrepreneurs and free markets, Tim is regularly featured as a keynote speaker in entrepreneurial conferences throughout the world, has been recognized as a leader in his field through numerous awards and honors, and has frequent TV, radio, and headline appearances. To further encourage entrepreneurship, Tim started BizWorld.org, a non-profit for children to learn entrepreneurship and Draper University of Heroes, a school for entrepreneurs 18-28.
Pascal heads up the Startup Program at Singularity University where he grows startups tackling the world’s most intractable problems leveraging exponential technologies. He loves technology and believes that the Internet is deeply impacting mankind. He got started on the Net before there was a web browser, founded a couple of technology startups, led eBay’s Platform Solutions Group in Europe, launched a consulting firm helping entrepreneurs with their strategy & operations, invested into early-stage tech startups, led Mozilla’s Innovation Lab, created Mozilla’s accelerator program WebFWD, headed up Mozilla’s Office of the Chair and invested into social impact organizations around the globe at Google.org. He also founded the non-profit organizations Mentor for Good, POWERUP and The Coaching Fellowship; the GyShiDo (Get Your S%#& Done) movement and publishes the opinionated The Heretic newsletter.
Ben Parr is an American journalist, author, venture capitalist and entrepreneur. He is the author of Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention, a book on the science and psychology of attention and how to capture the attention of others. He is Co-founder and Managing Partner of DominateFund, a seed-stage venture capital fund. He was previously the Co-Editor and Editor-at-Large of Mashable and a Columnist and Commentator for CNET. In 2012, he was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30.