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John Harthorne      

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, MassChallenge

John Harthorne is the Founder and CEO of MassChallenge, the largest-ever startup accelerator and competition. Startups participating in the 2010 and 2011 MassChallenge accelerator have raised over $250M and created over 2,000 jobs. The 2012 MassChallenge competition received over 1,230 applications from 36 US states and 35 countries. In January of 2011, President Barack Obama identified MassChallenge as one of Americas most effective startup accelerators.

John received his MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management in 2007. While at school, John received Grand Prize in the 2007 MIT $100K Business Plan Competition and received the 2007 Patrick J. McGovern Award for impact on quality and visibility of entrepreneurship at MIT. He also led the 10th annual MIT Global Startup Workshop (GSW) held in Trondheim, Norway.

In September 2011, the Boston Business Journal identified John as one of Boston's 50 Most Influential Business Leaders, alongside the CEOs of Akamai Technologies, Blue Cross Blue Shield and the Boston Celtics.

John is a life-long Massachusetts resident and an avid Red Sox fan. He currently lives in Somerville with his wife Natalia, their 6-year old son Max and their 2-year old girl Yulia.


MassChallenge: World’s largest accelerator shoots for impact over equity

John Harthorne had cleaned himself up and checked all the boxes on the path to a stable and happy life. Once a self-described “drunk” who was wandering aimlessly around Europe doing translation work for automotive companies, Harthorne (pictured above) found his way back to Boston, won the prestigious 100K Entrepreneurship Competition at the MIT Sloan business school, ran a global startups conference, and landed himself a $200,000-a-year job at Bain Capital.

Best Advice I Ever Got: John Harthorne

The co-founder and CEO of MassChallenge has heard his best pieces of advice repeated over and over again. John Harthorne shares how great minds--and mentors--think alike.

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