Ben Silbermann (born 1982) is an American Internet entrepreneur who co-founded and is CEO of Pinterest, a virtual pinboard which lets users organize images, links, recipes and other things. The website allows users to create and manage theme-based image collections called "pinboards". Examples include events, interests, hobbies and more. Users can browse other pinboards for inspiration, 're-pin' images to their own collections and/or 'like' photos.
Life and career
Silbermann was raised in Des Moines, Iowa. His parents, Jane Wang and Neil Silbermann, are ophthalmologists with a family practice still based in his native city. He is married to Divya Bhaskaran, with whom he has a son, Max. In 1998, Silbermann attended the Research Science Institute at MIT. Subsequently, the gifted student graduated from Des Moines Central Academy and Des Moines Roosevelt with the class of 1999. He then graduated from Yale College in the spring of 2003 with a degree in political science.
Prior to Pinterest (which launched in March 2010), Silbermann worked at Google in the online advertising group. However, after a short time with the company he left and started designing his own iPhone apps with a college friend, Paul Sciarra. After their initial application, Tote, failed to gain significant traction, the cofounders teamed up with Evan Sharp to create a pinboard product that would eventually be named Pinterest. Silbermann says that the genesis of Pinterest really came from his love of collecting as a kid. “Collecting tells a lot about who you are,” he said, and when they looked at the web “there wasn’t a place to share that side of who you were.”