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Rodney Mullen

Professional Skateboarder & Entrepreneur
Often considered The Godfather of Modern Skateboarding, Rodney Mullen invented most of the tricks that form the basis of the modern era, on top of being the most dominant world champion in its history. Having grown up in relative isolation, he developed an analytic approach that enhanced his creativity, combining movements in unparalleled ways that rippled into snowboarding and surfing, as well.

Rodney studied chemical engineering until seizing the opportunity to create his own skate company. Soon, it rose to be the industry leader, earning two patents along the way. Turning his focus to Linux (coding) after selling the business, he found parallels between in tech and skate cultures, relating the ethos and act itself to hacking and innovation. This led to his first talk, which was quickly hoisted to the TED page, with the help of Tim O’Reilly.

He has been featured in endless skate media; more recently, an extensive Wired exposé, Rolling Stone, Esquire, Vogue, Forbes, and the Wall Street Journal’s Still Life section. With his decades- long imprint in pop culture, suddenly he was invited to a wide array of speaking forums: MIT, Jet Propulsion Lab, The Smithsonian, UVA Medical School, TED, PopTech, O’Reilly Tech Conferences (Data and DevOps), as well as for business and cultural torchbearers such as Nike, Apple, Wired Magazine’s BizCon, GreyLock Partners, and before Condé Nast’s editors-in- chief, at the request of Anna Wintour.