Reid Garrett Hoffman (born August 5, 1967) is an American internet entrepreneur, venture capitalist and author. Hoffman was the co-founder and executive chairman of LinkedIn, a business-oriented social network used primarily for professional networking. He is currently a partner at the venture capital firm Greylock Partners. On the Forbes 2017 list of the world’s billionaires, Hoffman was ranked #631 with a net worth of US$3.1 billion.
Early life and education
Hoffman was born in Palo Alto, California, to Deanna Ruth (Rutter) and William Parker Hoffman, Jr., and grew up in Berkeley, California. His paternal great-great-great-grandfather was Theophilus Adam Wylie, a Christian Presbyterian minister and Indiana University president pro tempore. Reid’s uncle Eric Hoffman is a writer.
Hoffman himself describes how he was an avid tabletop roleplaying gamer as a child. His first paid job (at age 12) was as an editor at the game company Chaosium, then based in Oakland near his home. Although 14 years old at the time, Hoffman’s name features on the box of Chaosium’s RuneQuest role-playing game release ‘Borderlands’ (1982), receiving equal billing with such prominent game designers as Steve Perrin, Sandy Petersen and Greg Stafford.
Hoffman attended high school at The Putney School, where he farmed maple syrup, drove oxen and studied epistemology. He graduated from Stanford University in 1990, where he won both a Marshall Scholarship and a Dinkelspiel Award, with a B.S. in Symbolic Systems and Cognitive Science. He went on to earn an M.A. in Philosophy from Wolfson College, Oxford University in 1993 as a Marshall Scholar.