John Wood

Founder and CEO,
Room To Read

Room to Read is an organization committed to providing educational opportunities for underprivileged children in the developing world. John Wood founded the organization while working as a senior manager for Microsoft in Asia and, most recently, as Director of Business Development for the Greater China Region. Convinced that education was the way out of poverty, and driven to find a way to give back to the world, Mr. Wood quit his position to start Room To Read. His passion is to combine the “focus on results” ethic learned in the business world with the compassion and service ethic found in the non-profit arena. Room to Read works in Cambodia, India, Nepal and Vietnam, and seeks to provide under-privileged children with an opportunity to gain the lifelong gift of reading comprehension. The organization uses a three-pronged approach – partnering with local communities to build schools; establishing libraries and filling them with books and (when warranted) computers; and providing scholarships for poor female students. Wood graduated magna cum laude from the University of Colorado, with concentrations in finance and economic theory. He then received his M.B.A. from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University. Mr. Wood is also a partner in SV2 (established by the Community Foundation of Silicon Valley) and serves on the Steering Committee of the Silicon Valley Roundtable on IT and International Development.