BOSTON—Fourteen entrepreneurs are working with the Harvard Business School (HBS) community this year as Entrepreneurs-in-Residence (EiR). Sponsored by the School's Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship, the Entrepreneur-in-Residence program, now in its eighth year, invites experienced entrepreneurs to HBS to advise MBA students interested in starting companies and work with faculty on research and course development.
The fourteen entrepreneurs, twelve of whom are HBS alumni, represent careers and experiences from across several industries, including entertainment, internet and technology, private equity, telecommunications, and venture capital.
The School has named the following as Entrepreneurs-in-Residence for 2013-14:
- Ajay Agarwal (MBA 1995) is a managing director at Bain Capital in Palo Alto, where he focuses on early-stage software, mobile, and internet investing.
- Gordon Bloom is the founder of the Social Entrepreneurship Collaboratory at Stanford, Harvard, and Princeton Universities. He is also the author of Social Entrepreneurship: New Models of Sustainable Social Change.
- Chuck Davis (MBA 1986), formerly president and CEO of Shopzilla, Inc., has worked extensively in e-commerce, having served as CEO of Fandango and president of The Walt Disney Company's internet group.
- David Hornik, a venture capitalist at August Capital, invests broadly in IT companies, focusing on enterprise application and infrastructure software as well as consumer-facing software and services.
- Eric Paley (MBA 2003) is a managing partner at Founder Collective, an early-stage venture capital fund started by a team of entrepreneurs. Previously, he was the co-founder and CEO of Brontes Technologies.
- Jules Pieri (MBA 1986) is the founder and CEO of the Daily Grommet, a product launch platform that discovers and celebrates innovative companies.
- Ruben Pinchanski (MBA 1993) serves as an Entrepreneur Fellow at General Catalyst Partners Venture Capital, where he focuses on building e-commerce businesses and advising start-ups.
- Diego Rodriguez (MBA 2001), a partner at IDEO and a professor at Stanford's Design School, specializes in venture design, organizational processes, and marketing.
- Ray Rothrock (MBA 1988) has been with the venture capital firm Venrock Associates for more than two decades, investing in software and energy.
- Rudina Seseri (MBA 2005) is a partner in Cambridge, Mass,-based, Fairhaven Capital, where she invests in start-ups and works with founders and executive teams.
- Jim Sharpe (MBA 1976) is the former president of Extrusion Technology, an aluminum extrusion fabricator, which he recently sold to RFE Investment Partners, a private equity firm.
- Steve Sydness (MBA 1981) spent his early career in consulting before helping to build Great Plains Software, the world's largest provider of mid-market financial management software, and The Endurance International Group, the largest provider of online services to small and medium businesses.
- Tony Tjan (MBA 1998) founded and runs the venture capital firm Cue Ball after an early career as a successful entrepreneur in consulting.
- Russ Wilcox (MBA 1995) is the former CEO of E Ink, the company behind the display technology used in the Kindle and other e-readers.
Entrepreneurs-in-Residence serve for the entire academic year in a part-time capacity, meeting with students in group and one-on-one sessions and collaborating with various faculty members on cases, courses, research, and other activities.
Besides working together with the Entrepreneurs-in-Residence, Harvard MBA students interested in entrepreneurship have the opportunity to collaborate with HBS faculty members through field studies, independent research projects, a Silicon Valley Immersion Experience Program (IXP), and participation in the HBS New Venture Competition. In addition, students have access to the Harvard University Innovation Lab (i-lab), where they can use work space to develop and create a start-up idea.
All first-year MBA students take the required course The Entrepreneurial Manager, as well as a new first-year course called FIELD (Field Immersion Experiences for Leadership Development), whose third module requires them to work in small teams to launch a microbusiness. Second-year students can choose from more than two dozen entrepreneurship-related elective courses.
An estimated 50 percent of HBS graduates describe themselves as entrepreneurs 10 to 15 years after they graduate. Among the many alumni who have founded successful business ventures are Michael Bloomberg (MBA 1963), founder of Bloomberg L.P.; Marc C. Cenedella ( MBA 1998), founder, president, and CEO of TheLadders.com Inc; Scott Cook (MBA 1976), chairman and cofounder of Intuit; Abby Falik (MBA 2008), founder of Global Citizen Year; Kathy Guisti, (MBA 1985), founder and CEO of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation; Angie Hicks (MBA 2000), founder of Angie’s List; Jennifer Hyman and Jennifer Carter (both MBA 2009), co-founders of Rent the Runway; Sahlman Khan (MBA 2003), founder of Khan Academy; Marla Malcolm Beck (MBA 1998), founder of bluemercury; Tom Stemberg (MBA 1973), founder of Staples; and Jeremy Stoppelman (MBA 2005), CEO and cofounder of Yelp.
About The Rock Center:
The Arthur Rock Center for Entrepreneurship was created through the generosity of prominent venture capitalist Arthur Rock (MBA 1951), who donated $25 million to Harvard Business School in 2003 to support the entrepreneurship faculty and their research, fellowships for MBA and doctoral students, symposia and conferences, and outreach efforts to extend the impact of the School's extensive work in this field. HBS offered the country's first business school course in entrepreneurship in 1947; today, entrepreneurship is one of the largest faculty units at the School, with more than 30 faculty members teaching and conducting research. The Rock Center also works closely with the HBS California Research Center in Silicon Valley on entrepreneurship-related research and course development efforts.