On this episode of The CEO Story, we have Jake Wood. Jake Wood is currently the founder and CEO of Groundswell - a venture-backed software company aiming to democratize philanthropy by building a new category at the intersection of fintech, benefits tech, and charity.
Prior to launching Groundswell, Wood served as the founder and CEO of Team Rubicon, a disaster response organization that is widely considered one of America’s leading nonprofits. Since 2010, Team Rubicon has recruited over 150,000 volunteers and responded to nearly 1,000 disasters and humanitarian crises. Under Wood’s leadership, Team Rubicon scaled to 200 full-time employees across four offices and operated a $55 million P&L. In total, Wood helped raise nearly $300 million for Team Rubicon’s work through a mix of online donor acquisition, family foundations, and corporate partnerships –– to include complex licensing and co-marketing deals. Team Rubicon has become widely recognized for its strong corporate culture, which has been recognized numerous times as the “best place to work in America,” and its technological innovation via partnerships with companies like Microsoft, Twilio, Palantir, and others. Wood remains Team Rubicon’s chairman.
Prior to Team Rubicon, Wood served four years in a Marine Corps scout-sniper unit, leading Marines in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan. He graduated at the top of his class at boot camp, the School of Infantry, and the Marine Scout-Sniper Course. He received three meritorious promotions, with one in combat, and is the recipient of the Navy-Marine Commendation Medal with valor distinguishing device.
Wood is a sought-after thought leader on topics of organizational culture and leadership, frequently speaking at corporate and industry events. Notable corporate clients include Goldman Sachs, Intuit, Farmers Insurance, Travelers Insurance, Facebook, and Carhartt.
Wood’s memoir, Once A Warrior, was an Amazon best-seller and Tom Brokaw stated that “it’s the book America needs right now.”
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