You don’t need to be born in Silicon Valley to make it as a tech entrepreneur.
As this list proves, founders come from every corner of the U.S., and each state has someone who has changed the tech landscape.
Here’s a list of the biggest founders from each state plus Washington D.C.
And if you think we’ve overlooked someone big in your state, leave a note in the comments or tweet at @sai.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
Alaska: Larry Sanger, the other co-founder of Wikipedia and founder of Infobitt, moved to Anchorage when he was seven.
Arizona: Phoenician Joan Ganz Cooney changed television forever when she helped found the Children's Television Network, the creators of Sesame Street. Her career didn't stop in showtime, though. She founded the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, which specialises in increasing literacy through digital technology. The eponymous center has hosted things like the National STEM Video Game Challenge and launched a news site dedicated to reporting on educational gaming.
California: Steve Jobs, the visionary co-founder of Apple, was born in San Francisco. His adoptive parents eventually moved down to Mountain View, where he met Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak in high school. At his death in 2011, Jobs was worth an estimated $11 billion.
Colorado: David Packard, the co-founder of Hewlett-Packard (HP) company, was born in Pueblo. Upon his death, he donated more than $4 billion to his Packard Foundation.
Connecticut: John Zimmer grew up in Greenwich. In 2012, he co-founded Zimride, which spun off ride-hailing app Lyft, a rival to Uber. Zimride was later sold to Enterprise Rent-A-Car.
Delaware: Though many members of the Delaware-based du Pont family have amassed vast quantities of wealth, few had the abiding interest in new technology that Felix du Pont did. Felix's fascination was with aeroplanes, and after working at 'the family business' (DuPont -- which created nylon, teflon, kevlar, etc.) for a few years, he struck out on his own to found an aviation company. That company would go on to become US Airways.
Florida: Born in Gainesville, Dustin Moskovitz went to college at Harvard -- where he happened to room with Mark Zuckerberg. The rest is history, and the native Floridian became a co-founder of Facebook. He left the social network in 2008 to start his own company, Asana. He's reported to be the youngest self-made billionaire in history, worth more than $8.8 billion.
Hawaii: Honolulu native Steve Case graduated from Punahou School three years before Barack Obama. The AOL founder's estimated net worth in 2015 is $1.3 billion.
Idaho: Dan Price grew up in rural Idaho 20 to 30 minutes away from the nearest town, and started building his company, Gravity Payments, when he was in high school. After making little money and hiring his first employee for only $24K and no benefits, Price wanted to make amends and made the radical decision in 2015 to pay every single employee a minimum wage of $70,000 a year.
Illinois: At 24, Tony Hsieh sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded to Microsoft for $265 million. Hsieh later became CEO of Zappos.com and leading the 'Downtown Project' in Las Vegas.
Indiana: Sun Microsystems co-founder and chairman Scott McNealy was born in Columbus, Indiana. Even with a net worth of more than $1 billion, McNealy still caddied for his son, Maverick, during the 2014 US Open.
Iowa: Born in Cedar Falls, Marc Andreessen is famous for developing the Mosaic browser and co-founding Netscape. Andreessen has since gone on to become a prominent venture capitalist in Silicon Valley with investments in Facebook, Stripe, and Lyft.
Kansas: Kansas City native Kyle Vogt is a serial entrepreneur on a winning streak. He first co-founded Socialcam, which was acquired by Autodesk for $60 million. Vogt then went on to co-found Justin.TV, which rebranded as Twitch in 2011. Twitch sold to Amazon for $1.1 billion, and Vogt is now CEO of Cruise, a company that wants to bring self-driving tech to your car.
Kentucky: Boland T. Jones says his dad used to call him and his six siblings the 'little army' because they would help him manage his Louisville, Kentucky dry cleaning stores. And by the time Boland was in high school, he was a mini entrepreneur in his own right, repaving hundreds of driveways during the summertime with an enormous bucket of tar. Jones brought this work ethic to founding companies, the most prominent of which is PGi. PGi produces audio and video conferencing products the help workplaces stay connected in the digital age.
Louisiana: Salman Khan was born to two immigrant parents (one Indian and one Bangladeshi), and went to public school in New Orleans, Louisiana, before going to both MIT and Harvard. He first worked as a financial analyst, but did an abrupt 180 to found Khan Academy, an free online education tool. Khan Academy, a nonprofit, has attracted big backers like Google and Microsoft, and over 2 million subscribers to its YouTube channel.
Maine: Charles Flint may have died in 1934, before computers, but he founded the company -- Tabulating-Recording Company -- which later became IBM. His financial wheeling and dealing earned him the nickname 'The Father of Trusts.'
Maryland: GoDaddy founder Bob Parsons was as 'poor as a church mouse' growing up in inner city Baltimore. He's now worth $2.1 billion from his web hosting service and the sale of Parsons Technology to Intuit for $64 million.
Massachusetts: The New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg was actually born in Boston in 1942. He launched Bloomberg LP in 1981, took a brief break as Mayor of NYC, and returned to the company after. He is now worth more than $35 billion.
Michigan: Google co-founder Larry Page was born in Lansing and graduated from the University of Michigan. It wasn't until his grad school days at Stanford that he met Sergey Brin and co-founded Google, making him worth $29.2 billion.
Minnesota: Former SurveyMonkey CEO Dave Goldberg was born in Minneapolis. At 26, he sold the first startup he founded, Launch Media, to Yahoo for $12 million.
Mississippi: Jackson native Bob Pittman founded MTV and has bounced his way through tech companies like AOL, Time Warner and even did a stint at Six Flags theme parks. Pittman has turned his eye back to radio now runs iHeartRadio as CEO of iHeartMedia.
Missouri: St. Louis native Jack Dorsey has founded two companies and, in the interim, is currently running them both. Dorsey is one of the Twitter co-founders and is both co-founder and permanent CEO of Square.
Montana: A Helena native, Dave Morin worked for Apple and Facebook before founding his own company, Path.
Nevada: Kevin Rose grew up in Las Vegas and attended UNLV before he dropped out to move to Silicon Valley. Rose co-founded Digg, the popular tech link site, and a series of other startups. He's now betting on apps with his mobile tech lab, North Technologies.
New Hampshire: Tad Martin's startup career took off at Amazon-funded Gear.com, which was acquired by Overstock.com -- making Martin one of Overstock's first employees. He became Overstock's COO, and helped the company grow from $70 million in revenue to over $800 million before striking out on his own. Martin founded Collective(i), which aims to reinvent the way business operate, especially in sales, using advanced data.
New Mexico: Amazon founder Jeff Bezos was born in Albuquerque. In 2000, Bezos also launched spaceflight company Blue Origin, and between the two companies and his investments, is now worth $35 billion.
New York: Born in Manhattan, Larry Ellison made a name for himself as the founder of Oracle in 1977. As the company's CTO and Chairman, Ellison is the fifth richest person in the world with a net worth of more than $54 billion.
North Carolina: James 'Jim' Goodnight's software company, SAS, was co-founded across the street from North Carolina State University. Born in Salisbury, Goodnight earned his Ph.D in statistics from the university and is now worth $7.5 billion.
North Dakota: Born in Harvey, the native North Dakotan became later famously associated with another state: Texas. Haggerty co-founded Texas Instruments in 1951 and helped guide the company into the semiconductor business.
Ohio: David Duffield founded PeopleSoft in 1987 and it grew to become the second-largest application software company before it was acquired by Oracle in a hostile takeover. Duffield didn't stop there though. Duffield then co-founded Workday in 2005 and is a co-CEO of the popular company. He's also a big philanthropist and established Maddie's Fund to help save the lives of dogs and cats as seen below.
Oklahoma: Andrew Stroup was born in South Korea, but adopted by an Oklahoma family and raised near Tulsa. Stroup is something of a geek renaissance man, working for the Department of Defence as well as being one of the top World of Warcraft players in the world. He participated in the first season of the Discovery Channel's the Big Brain Theory, and has founded a slew of companies, like the giant robot competition MegaBots.
Oregon: Mike Jones may be best known as the CEO who turned around MySpace so it could be acquired. That's just a small slice of this Oregon native's background. He's founded several companies and now his own tech studio/incubator in Los Angeles called Science.
Pennsylvania: The world now knows Mark Cuban as the flamboyantly outspoken owner of the Dallas Mavericks, and one the sharks circling on the show Shark Tank, but once upon a time he was a working class kid from Pittsburgh. Cuban made his first money selling garbage bags and powdered milk, but made his true fortune when he sold his second company, Broadcast.com, for $5.7 billion.
South Carolina: Brooks Buffington and Tyler Droll founded Yik Yak in their dorm room at Furman University in Greenville. The anonymous messaging platform is now valued at $400 million.
South Dakota: Gene Amdahl was born in Flandreau, South Dakota, a city with a population of only around 2,300 people, leaving to serve two years in the U.S. Navy during World War II. After getting a Ph.D. in theoretical physics, he joined IBM, where he became one of the driving forces behind the business mainframe computer. Since then he's founded four companies in his own right.
Tennessee: Charles Ergen, the chairman and cofounder of Dish Network, is known as one of the slickest dealmakers in the TV industry. That business savvy has netted the Oakridge, Tennessee native $17.1 billion.
Texas: Michael Dell founded his eponymous computer company in 1984 at the age of 19, and with just $1,000. In 1992, Dell became the youngest CEO to rank in the Fortune 500. This son of Austin, Texas, is now worth $18 billion and is still the Chairman and CEO.
Utah: Nolan Bushnell founded two very different but very successful companies -- Atari and Chuck E. Cheese's (along with a bevy of others). What these two iconic businesses do have in common is a sense of gaming and fun. Steve Jobs' first boss is now focused on trying to 'fix' education by using video game metrics to 'addict' students to academics.
Vermont: Paul Bunitz encapsulates the off-beat entrepreneurial spirit of his chosen residence of Burlington, Vermont. Budnitz was coding software for nuclear power plants by the time he got to high school, but has since moved more into design. He founded the alternative social network Ello, Kidrobot, an art toys and apparel company, and Budnitz bicycles, a luxury bike brand.
Virginia: Sean Parker took the entire world by storm when he founded Napster, the music file-sharing service that brought the wrath of the powers of the music industry. Though Napster didn't make him his fortune, it spring-boarded him into the position of tech world bad boy, which he utilised to become the founding president of Facebook. Parker is reportedly worth almost $3 billion now.
Washington: Bill Gates is not only from Seattle, Washington, but has come to define it in many ways. The founder of Microsoft and epic philanthropist has given away close to $30 billion, and is worth almost $80 billion.
West Virginia: Dave McClure of West Virginia is best known for running the prominent startup incubator 500 Startups, and for his shrewd angel investments. He's invested in successful companies like Credit Karma, MakerBot, Mint.com, and SlideShare.
Wisconsin: Seymour Cray was called the 'father of supercomputers,' and founded Cray Research Inc. with the goal of building the faster computers the world had ever seen. After leaving his company, the founded another called Cray Computer Corporation in 1989, which unfortunately went bankrupt as the demand for supercomputers plummeted after the Cold War. But ever the entrepreneur, Cray started yet another computer company shortly after, however he died a mere two months after founding it.
Washington DC: Elizabeth Holmes founded Theranos when she was just 19 based on her patented way of running 30 common lab tests in a much less expensive way than traditional lab testing. Holmes hasn't stopping going since, and says she works basically from the time she wakes up to when she goes to sleep. Every single day. And it's worked. Beyond pioneering new methods of helping patients, Holmes is reportedly worth $4.6 billion.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.