We pair top business and technology experts with innovative, rapidly growing social ventures around the world. Beyond advising, RippleWorks is real problem solving: volunteer experts work with ventures to jointly solve an immediate and critical scaling challenge.

Massive impact can come from massive scale, and funding no longer is the biggest barrier to scale for many social ventures. Ventures that have raised funding are primed to scale their business and impact, but require access to specific expertise along the way. Silicon Valley experts are poised to help.

Many in Silicon Valley and the larger tech sector hold the valuable expertise that will scale and accelerate impact around the world. What if they could drive impact while keeping their day jobs?

RippleWorks provides these top professionals with a well-defined, high-impact opportunity that redefines the idea of volunteering.

“I’ve deeply enjoyed learning about the challenges and projects that these ventures are tackling, and it’s a pleasure to see them make progress.” – Chris Kanaan, Expert-In-Residence & Ripple’s VP Engineering

RippleWorks supports ventures that are creating products and services that have the potential to empower millions in a critically positive way. Our ventures build and provide solutions that enable access to everything from affordable energy, to micro-insurance, to small-business financing.

As with all startups, hyper-growth is no small task. Our social ventures require top expertise around specific challenges, both operational and technical, to ensure that they scale properly.

“RippleWorks has been a game changer for us.”
– Xavier Helgesen, CEO, Off.Grid:Electric

Expert volunteers work with innovative social ventures that are well on their way to solving some of the world's toughest challenges. By applying their skills and experience, experts play a critical role in empowering these ventures to scale their business and impact.

Nairobi, Kenya

Kopo Kopo is the world’s first merchant services platform built for mobile money and offering a full-suite of payment, credit and marketing tools.

Kopo Kopo has built the largest independent merchant network in the mobile money industry. As it grows beyond East Africa to other parts of Africa, South America and Asia, it requires a new strategy around its cloud-based architecture.

Dodoma, Tanzania

Off.Grid:Electric is a massively scalable solar leasing company offering radically affordable energy for the 1.6 billion people who don’t have access to electricity.

The customer base is growing in the hundreds of people per day. As a “solar as a service” company high-quality customer service is essential. How does it maintain quality service with a huge spike in new customers?

Jakarta, Indonesia

Ruma empowers 30,000 trusted community stores to provide over 2 million customers a month with easy access to online payment services and to shop for goods.

As demand for its services soars, the Ruma team needs assistance on how best to scale its architecture and organization. How can it ensure that in 5 years the system will scale to meet its rapid growth? 

RippleWorks offers a well-defined and high-impact program. Our simple four-stage process guides both expert and venture from application through project success. Our team ensures an immersive experience in which an expert's time and contributions are maximized for impact.





Both experts and ventures must apply to the RippleWorks program.

For experts, we look for those who have demonstrated substantial success in their field of expertise as well as soft skills that will ensure a productive collaboration in a new environment.

For ventures, we look for venture-backed start-ups with significant market traction and a commitment to a social purpose.

Once selected to the program, we pair expert and venture based on the venture's most pressing scaling challenges and the expert's domain expertise.

Projects are jointly defined by both expert and venture, and structured with specific goals and milestones.

We quickly zero in on and define the imminent and mission-critical challenges facing ventures.

We design and optimize the entire experience to be efficient and easy for both ventures and experts; from getting started to offering best practices to drive a successful project, to arranging and paying for any travel.

We bring a results-orientated approach to every engagement.

Each project's success will be measured against the milestones that were agreed upon at the beginning of the engagement.

A successful project will be one where you see your ideas and solutions being implemented and the venture scale.

Ready to test your skills, scale a startup, and drive real impact?

Apply now to start pushing the pace of social innovation:

Fill out my online form.

If you are a venture interested in the RippleWorks program, please email us at ventures@rippleworks.org.

Based in Silicon Valley, RippleWorks' leadership and volunteer experts bring extensive start-up experience and expertise, starting and scaling scores of successful ventures.

Picture of <b>Doug Galen</b>
Picture of <b>Chris Larsen</b>
Picture of <b>Pradeep Suthram</b>
Picture of <b>Jay Lee</b>
Picture of <b>Sarah Burch</b>

Doug Galen

Co-Founder & CEO

In addition to RippleWorks, Doug is a Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Doug sits on the non-profit Boards of Heifer International, Positive Coaching Alliance, and Jasper Ridge Farm and advises early stage companies.

Prior to RippleWorks, Doug served as Chief Revenue Officer at Shopkick, a mobile app startup that was bought by SK Telecom. Prior to Shopkick, he was SVP of business and corporate development at Shutterfly, where he helped grow revenue from $50 million to $500 million. Doug served as VP and GM of new ventures for eBay, and was employee #3 as Vice President of Sales and BD for publicly traded E-LOAN.

Chris Larsen


Chris Larsen is CEO and Co-founder of Ripple, creators of an open-source distributed payment protocol. Chris also cofounded and served as CEO of Prosper, a peer-to-peer lending marketplace, and E-LOAN, a publicly traded online lender.

During his tenure at E-LOAN, he pioneered the open access to credit scores movement by making E-LOAN the first company to show consumers their FICO scores. Chris serves at the board and advisory levels at numerous companies and organizations including: Progreso Financiero, Betable, CreditKarma, and Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC).

Pradeep Suthram

Director, Product Experience

Pradeep Suthram most recently served as Process Lead at VMware developing hybrid cloud services with 34 teams across 4 continents. Prior to VMWare, Pradeep consulted for venture capital firms in Washington, D.C. and Bangalore and was Product Manager at SomeoneWith where he developed the initial design, experience, and business model to provide financial services for cancer patients and their families.

Pradeep was the second employee at PICnet, a B-Corp where he led the design of the company’s flagship SaaS product to deliver affordable web applications for 300+ non-profits over 5 years. Over the past two years, he has volunteered at Primate Education network to help grow a network to connect, empower, and train community educators in wildlife conservation in 7 countries.

Jay Lee

Growth and Community Associate

Jay joined RippleWorks after serving as a senior social impact fellow at the New Sector Alliance, where he worked with military veterans nonprofits based within the VA healthcare system to develop more integrated business development and fundraising strategies. Previously, Jay worked in various editorial capacities for Major League Baseball Advanced Media, including leading the digital front-page web strategy for MLB.com and the 30 official club websites.

Jay holds an M.A. in Communication from Stanford University, where he worked at the Center for Social Innovation to connect MBA students with social impact organizations, as well as a B.S. in Media from the University of Illinois.

Sarah Burch

Portfolio Manager

Sarah Burch specializes in helping emerging market social enterprises grow and generate sustainable impact. Over the past five years, Sarah helped launch and develop one of the first VC-style impact funds in government. Called Development Innovation Ventures (DIV), it was aimed at identifying and supporting early stage organizations that are addressing most challenging problems in the developing world.

At DIV, Sarah led the due diligence and closing of over 20 deals, aggregating $22 million in over 10 countries. She managed 30 of the organizations in the fund portfolio, serving as an advisor on business development, fundraising, and growth strategies for companies in areas such as energy, water access, and health care.

Picture of <b>Michelle Munoz</b>
Picture of <b>Michael Starkenburg</b>
Picture of <b>Rick Levenson</b>
Picture of <b>Neil Day</b>

Michelle Munoz

Human Capital Adviser

Michelle Munoz is a Human Capital adviser for RippleWorks, providing her expertise around executive recruitment and talent management. She plays a pivotal role in growing RippleWorks’ top-caliber expert network and placing the right expert with the right project.

Michelle was brought in as the first recruiter at Omidyar Network to launch search and talent management services to support their portfolio companies. In addition to managing full cycle executive searches, Michelle provides executive coaching for implementing hiring strategies, talent strategy roadmap consulting, brainstorming and training sessions, and monthly advisory calls.

Prior to joining Omidyar Network in 2009, Michelle spent over ten years as a senior recruiter working for companies such as Apple, eBay/PayPal, Google, and Nortel Networks, where she helped facilitate rapid organizational growth in very competitive environments.

Michael Starkenburg

Expert in Residence / CTO

Michael R. Starkenburg is an entrepreneur, advisor, and investor in early-stage technology companies focusing on the unique problem of transitioning from start-up to hyper-growth.  Over the last 15 years has advised more than 350 technology companies and 30 investors. His venture experience includes stints as a Technology Partner at The Sprout Group and Eldorado Ventures, and has been an officer in four public companies.

Michael’s operating experience includes CEO of Image Metrics, a computer-vision software company, SVP Technology for Gemstar-TV Guide where he led a team of 350, CIO at Tickets.com where he managed integration of 9 acquisitions and a successful IPO, and was the first CTO of Cyberian Outpost where he helped lead the company to $400 million in revenue.

He is a published author and holds a BBA degree from The George Washington University.

Rick Levenson

Expert in Residence / CTO

Rick Levenson is an engineering leader and a long-time denizen of Silicon Valley. He currently advises and nurtures a variety of new ventures, helping them build engineering teams driven by a zealously creative and productive culture. Particular areas of expertise are global development, adoption of highly technical solutions, and managing through change (e.g., growth, acquisition, technology shift).

Over the years, Rick has led many teams in settings ranging from nascent ventures to Microsoft divisions. His experience spans Xerox PARC, Sun/Javasoft, Openwave, Tellme, Microsoft, Polycom and a variety of startups. Most recently, he was at kiva.org, leading the engineering effort to help alleviate poverty through the power of crowd-lending.

Rick earned a MS in Computer Science from Stanford University and a BS in Theoretical Math from the U.C. Berkeley. He spends his free time traveling, cooking, and cycling.

Neil Day

Expert in Residence / CTO

Neil Day is a Principal of Coffee Technologies at Blue Bottle Coffee, where he leads a team that is creating new technologies to make delicious coffee easy for everyone, and previously was the founder Perfect Coffee.

Before delving into the coffee world, Neil served as Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer at Shutterfly, where he was responsible for the company’s overall technology strategy and execution. Neil joined Shutterfly from Sears Holdings where he served as Senior Vice President and CTO, and was part of the founding team of Walmart.com, responsible for development and operations. His previous CTO experiences also includes Velosel and Homewarehouse.com, which was acquired by Walmart.com.

Neil Day received his Bachelors Degree in Cognitive Science from the University of Rochester. An admitted adrenaline junkie, Neil enjoys windsurfing, surfing and back country skiing and photographing his various outdoor adventures and travels.

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