What a few months! Vittana has been racing forward (10,000 students!), but there’s something even more special—
A new CEO! After reviewing hundreds of candidates, doing dozens of interviews, and spending many hours together, I’m excited to announce today that Robin Wolaner is taking the helm of Vittana.
What an adventure, guys.
And like the best adventures, sometimes you have to be bold. I’m announcing today that I’m stepping down as the CEO of Vittana.
I’m moving upstairs and becoming Co-Chairman of Vittana’s Board of Directors. The reason? It’s simple. Given Vittana’s growth and impact, it’s time for a new generation of leadership. My commitment to Vittana hasn’t changed — I’ll still be very involved, albeit in a slightly different role.
Yes, there is evil in the world. Yes, there is death — unfair, untimely death. There is apathy, there is greed, there is awfulness. But, there is also goodness in this world. Real goodness.
Yesterday, someone tried to steal that from us.
Well, fuck that. I refuse. There is goodness, I know this. There is kindness, I know this too. There is courage, genuineness, raw messy inner human beauty — all of this I know.
I know this because, over the past five years of building Vittana, I’ve had the genuine honor (pleasure!) of getting to know some of the most amazing people in the world.
Thanks to you, Vittana grew 4X, expanded in Africa, reached 8,000 students in 12 countries & had our first $1 million month!
Even this past week has been incredible!
- We fully deployed our $500,0000 Vittana/MCE Education Opportunity Fund in the Philippines, helping more than 1,340 youth escape poverty.
- We announced Vinod Khosla and Rich Barton, two of technology’s biggest names, joined as lead donors on Vittana’s League of Extraordinary Tech Superheroes”.
- My blog post, “Why I Walked Away from $1 Million”, became a viral hit: 1,000+ likes & tweets, Huffington Post, Nick Kristof, Vinod Khosla, Tim O’Reilly & others.
- To cap it all off, last Thursday we celebrated with Seattle (nearly 1,000 people!) at the GeekWire Gala, raising $32,000+ to fight youth poverty!
- And just yesterday, Google’s employees raised
$102,541$120,000+ (one day!) for Vittana’s fight against youth poverty!
Four years ago, I walked away from Amazon and a million dollars — thousands of stock options. I was a twenty-something kid running a billion-dollar team but I wanted more.