New Insights from Disruptive Industry Leaders in Entrepreneurship Series from Kauffman Foundation on Khan Academy

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Transparency, trust among the tenets driving these successful entrepreneurs featured at

Founders of four companies in diverse industries share key tenets that are driving forces behind their successes on the latest installment of the Kauffman Foundation entrepreneurship interview series on Khan Academy. Personal lessons and insights from accomplished entrepreneurs are the basis of the series produced by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.

Representing industries ranging from eyewear and education to apps and digital security, the founders talk about several common themes that they credit as key to their business success. These include finding a genuine need in the market, staying true to your company’s purpose and values, disrupting the status quo, and being transparent to customers.

Presented in a conversational format with accompanying illustrations, the 12 videos feature five entrepreneurs who share lessons they learned during the startup phase, how they cope with the “emotional roller coaster” of running a company, when to protect intellectual property and the power of serendipity.

The entrepreneurs featured in the new interview series are:

  •     Neil Blumenthal and David Gilboa, cofounders and CEOs of Warby Parker, the first company to bespoke eyewear online; it donates a pair of glasses to someone in need for every pair sold.
  •     Calvin Carter, founder, Bottle Rocket Apps, which designs custom, high-end mobile apps using “low-fi” pencil-and-paper sketching techniques to ensure quality. The company launched on the heels of Apple opening up its platform to third parties.
  •     Toby Rush, CEO and founder, EyeVerify, the creator of EyePrint ID, a university technology that protects digital identities using cameras on mobile devices to image and pattern match the blood vessels in the whites of the eye.
  •     Beth Schmidt, founder,, a nonprofit organization that enables donors to send low-income students to after-school and summer camps that match the students’ passions.

Founders already featured in the series include Giles Shih, president and CEO of BioResource International; Lara Morgan, founder of Pacific Direct; Marc Ecko, founder of Ecko Unlimited; Richard Branson, chairman of the Virgin Group; T.A. McCann, founder and CEO of Gist; and Zach Kaplan, CEO of Inventables.

The Kauffman Foundation series represents the first entrepreneurship content to be added to the Khan Academy’s vast collection of free online educational tutorials and learning resources, potentially inspiring on average 12 million users a month.

Since launching in the fall of 2013, the series has generated almost 300,000 views. The Kauffman Foundation will continually add new content featuring more entrepreneurs. To see the Kauffman Foundation entrepreneurship interview series on Khan Academy, go to


About the Kauffman Foundation
The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that aims to foster economic independence by advancing educational achievement and entrepreneurial success. Founded by late entrepreneur and philanthropist Ewing Marion Kauffman, the Foundation is based in Kansas City, Mo., and has approximately $2 billion in assets. For more information, visit, and follow the Foundation on and

About Khan Academy
Khan Academy is a 501(c)3 non-profit with a mission of providing a free world-class education for anyone, anywhere. Khan Academy provides free online educational experiences (e.g., adaptive exercises, instructional videos, a computer programming platform, dashboard analytics, teacher tools) that support personalized education for users of all ages in a scalable way. To date, the organization has delivered over 440 million lessons and over 2 billion exercise problems. Currently it has over 15 million registered users and over 4 million exercise problems completed each day. In addition to content from prestigious institutions such as MIT, NASA, The British Museum and MoMA, Khan Academy covers subject areas such as computer science, math, art history, economics, physics, biology, chemistry and more. For further information, visit

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Barbara Pruitt
Kauffman Foundation
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