Kamran Elahian

Born in Tehran, Iran, in 1954, Mr. Elahian immigrated to the U.S. in 1972. He received his BS in computer science, BS in mathematics and ME in computer graphics from the University of Utah by the age of 22. In addition, Mr. Elahian studied Integrated Circuit (chip) design at Stanford University’s Honors Program while working as a design automation software engineer at Hewlett Packard (HP). As an entrepreneur, Mr. Elahian co-founded ten companies, three of them failed (e.g. Momenta), six of them produced a total market cap of over $8B (e.g. Cirrus Logic) and one has a potential for IPO next year. As a VC, Mr. Elahian co-founded Global Catalyst Partners with investments in the U.S., Japan, China, India and Israel. Underlying Mr. Elahian’s global vision is the conviction that modern Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) can be instrumental in dissolving barriers between the nations. This vision is reflected in Schools-Online, a nonprofit he co-founded in 1996 to connect the world, one school at a time (6400 schools in 36 countries were provided with computers and access to the Internet) and merged with Relief International in 2003; Global Catalyst Foundation, co-founded in 2000 to improve lives through the effective application of ICT, and UN-GAID, a United Nations global forum that promotes ICT in developing countries where Mr. Elahian served as Co-Chairman (2009-2011). Inspired by the radical revolutionary Che Guevara and the indomitable, peace-loving Mahatma Gandhi, Mr. Elahian has developed his own brand of philanthropy; one that makes the most of modern technological innovations, such as mobile communications and the Internet, to bridge the social and political differences among people.