Jim Hornthal '76
Jim Hornthal ‘76’s professional time is evenly divided between venture capital and entrepreneurship. His active angel investing activities are complemented by his role as a Venture Partner with CMEA Capital, an established venture capital firm with $1.2 billion under management that invests primarily in early stage technology, energy and life science companies.
As an entrepreneur, Jim is best known as the Founder of Preview Travel, one of the first online travel agencies. Jim took Preview Travel public in 1997, and later initiated it’s merger in 2000 with a division of Sabre Holdings to create Travelocity.com, where Jim served as Vice Chairman of the combined organization. Travelocity.com was ultimately re-acquired by Sabre Holdings in 2002.
Jim is currently the founder and Chairman of Triporati, whose “Destination Genome Project” is changing the way travelers discover their perfect travel destination. Jim is also on the board of several private companies including KIND Snacks and Via (Bangalore, India) and has been the Lester Center Fellow for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley since 2002.
Jim’s philanthropic endeavors are also centered on working with social entrepreneurs who are working to make the world a smaller place by bridging the widening gaps between conflicting regions and nations. As the current Chairman of the Young Presidents’ Organization’s (YPO) Peace Action Network (PAN), Mr. Hornthal gets to work with business leaders who want to play an active role in affecting change in their own regions. Since it began in 2002, PAN has fostered the creation of an India-Pakistan Forum, an Israeli-Arab forum, and an Arab American Action Forum which Mr. Hornthal co-founded and serves as its co-Chair.
PAN’s unifying thesis is that there is an important role for the private sector in areas of geographic conflict and division. PAN members share the belief that business leaders have a responsibility to engage, because their success creates jobs, which is part of a coordinated effort that can improve the prospects for a sustainable peace.
PAN members work together to bridge cultural gaps by bringing business leaders from across political and geographic borders together to gain insight and understanding that they can share with their spheres of influence; personal, professional and political.
Outside the world of YPO, Jim maintains this focus by serving as a Trustee for The One Voice Movement, a grass roots organization made up of nearly 700,000 Palestinian and Israeli youth who work to amplify the voice of the mainstream while marginalizing extreme positions on both sides. Jim is also an advisor to Just Vision, an active member of The Council on Foreign Relations, a founding participant in the Clinton Global Initiative and a delegate to President Obama’s Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship and the Skoll World Forum.
Mr. Hornthal lives in San Francisco with his wife of 31 years, Bethany, and two rather independent-minded golden doodles named Snicker and Cleo. Their daughter, Becca is a student at Tufts University; (Class of 2011), and their son Joshua is student at University of Pennsylvania (Class of 2013).
Jim received a BA in Economics from Princeton University cum laude, and his MBA from Harvard Business School, where he was a Baker Scholar.