At the time of recording, Desiree Vargas Wrigley was the President of the Young Entrepreneurs Academy and the founder of Pearachute, a company that helps parents and children drop into the best family activities in town. Prior to launching Pearachute, Desiree co-founded GiveForward, the world’s leading crowd giving platform for people facing a major life event. Under her leadership, the company helped friends and family contribute nearly $160M to loved ones in need. After graduating from Yale, Desiree worked at the Kauffman Foundation as a specialist in entrepreneurship and at Arabella Philanthropic Investment Advisors. Most recently, she taught New Venture Discovery at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management. Desiree has been named Inc's 30 Under 30, Crain's 40 Under 40, one of Parents Magazine's Most Inspiring Moms, one of Forbes’ Women to Watch, and has appeared on Shark Tank, closing one of the largest deals on the show to date. When not working, she enjoys spending time with her 2 young sons, stepdaughter, and crime-fighting husband.
Desiree joined me today to discuss when she started to feel the pull of entrepreneurship. She shares with us when her initial idea went from kernel to a more serious pursuit. Desiree shares some of the big challenges of her first venture, GiftForward. She talks about some of the lessons of working with the board of directors and how grateful she is for them.
“I really do believe that we are in a unique position to help feed the diversity pipeline that goes into innovation and entrepreneurship, and including computer science.”
- Desiree Vargas Wrigley
Today on Startups for Good we cover:
Knowing when to start on a company
Crowdfunding landscape before Kickstarter and GoFundMe
Understanding the differences between the venture capitalists and the customer
Knowing when to scale the business and when to sale
The experience of a Shark Tank pitch, deal and the aftermath
Mentoring and enriching the lives of young entrepreneurs
Thanks for tuning into today’s episode of Startups For Good with your host, Miles Lasater. If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe and leave a rating and review on your favorite podcast listening app.