The Weird, Awesome Hobbies Of 13 Tech Execs


This is the third of the six-part “SA 100 Insider” series, looking at the passions, hobbies, and pursuits of Silicon Alley’s tech elite. “SA 100 Insider” is sponsored by Mercedes. Read more posts in the series »

Richard Branson Thumbs UpGetty ImagesRichard Branson is a social media whiz

Nothing like some trans-Atlantic hot air ballooning to get your mind off a stressful workweek, right?
OK, so maybe soaring over the ocean is not everyone’s idea of a good way to unwind, but these technology founders and CEOs prove that with extraordinary jobs come extraordinary hobbies.

Whether completely random or just downright awesome, the extracurricular activities of these tech people just make them even more interesting than we would have thought.

Philip James, the co-founder of wine sales site Lot18, gets excited about extreme sports. In 2003 he climbed Mt. Everest and he is currently on a yearlong bike trip around the world.

Kenny Rosenblatt, CEO of game company Arkadium, owns a farm in Upstate New York where he grows organic vegetables to escape the workweek grind of living and breathing technology.

Serial entrepreneur Mark Cuban owns the Dallas Mavericks (the team won an NBA title in 2011) and hosts the ABC show Shark Tank.

Cisco Systems co-founder Sandy Lerner loves jousting. She owns lances, period costumes, and even an 800-acre farm in Virginia where she raises Shire horses for matches.

You could refer to the CEO of enterprise cloud sharing company Box as 'That Magic Guy.' Aaron Levie became magic trick-obsessed as a kid, performed professionally for several years (his favourite trick involved disappearing into giant boxes), and still does tricks around the office.

Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos is funding the construction of a gigantic, 10,000-year clock on his land, to remind us all to stay humble about how teeny-tiny our individual lives are.

Scott Cohn, creator of the drawing app, recently started writing and illustrating children's books based on his experiences as a new dad.

Larry Ellison of Oracle loves his big, fancy boats. His team won the America's Cup race this year.

Nick Ganju, one of the founders of the online medical care scheduling service ZocDoc, plays music in parks and sometimes gets mistaken for a panhandler.

Richard Branson's entire life is like a series of badass hobbies. The Virgin founder has explored space, adventured in the deep sea, and was the first person to fly a hot air balloon across the Atlantic Ocean.

Want to check up on some other tech people?

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