Mike Del Ponte

Mike is the co-founder and CEO of Soma, the smart, beautiful, sustainable water filter. Soma was named one of "25 Companies The Will Change the World" by Inc. and the #1 Design Story of the Year by Fast Company.

Soma has partnered with David Beeman, one of the top filtration experts in the world, to create a filter that is not only effective, but also sustainable. The biodegradable filter is made of coconut shell carbon, silk, and a plant-based casing. Fresh filters are delivered to customers every two months on a convenient subscription and every Soma filter sold supports charity: water, a nonprofit organization on a mission to provide clean and safe drinking water to every person on the planet.

Prior to founding Soma, Mike led marketing at BranchOut, the largest professional network on Facebook. As an early employee, Mike helped grow BranchOut from 0 to 25 million users in 16 months.

Mike is the founder and former CEO of Sparkseed, a global nonprofit investing in the most promising young social entrepreneurs. Mike's leadership earned Sparkseed a Financial Times Social Innovation Award and recognition in numerous publications, including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and CNN.

In 2010, Mike and the Sparkseed team hosted Dangerously Ambitious, the highly praised, invite-only summit for social innovators, investors, designers, and thought leaders.

Before founding Sparkseed, Mike served as a Christian Peacemaker in the West Bank, an orphanage volunteer in Jamaica, a micro-finance consultant in Nepal, and a part of the team that designed a child health care program in Kutch, India. Mike has degrees from Boston College and Yale University.

He also serves on the boards of the Global Center for Social Entrepreneurship and Mobilize.org. He is a prolific speaker and advises social entrepreneurs, and was named to Forbes' "Up and Comers" list in December 2012.

Mike has spoken at numerous universities, conferences, and corporations, including Harvard Business School, Yale Law School, Pepperdine University, Duke University, Social Enterprise Conference, AshokaU Social Enterprise Exchange, and Social Capital Markets Conference.

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