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Jimmy Wales

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Jimmy Wales
Jimmy Wales Fundraiser Appeal edit.jpg
Jimmy Wales in December 2008
Born Jimmy Donal Wales
August 7, 1966 (1966-08-07) (age 50)
Huntsville, Alabama, United States
Residence St. Petersburg, Florida
Nationality United States
Other names Jimbo (online nickname)
Alma mater Auburn University
University of Alabama
Indiana University Bloomington
Occupation Internet entrepreneur
Known for Co-founding Wikipedia
Title President of Wikia, Inc. (2004–present)
Chairman of the Wikimedia Foundation
Term June 2003 – October 2006
Successor Florence Devouard
Board member of Wikimedia Foundation, Creative Commons, Socialtext, MIT Center for Collective Intelligence (advisory board)
Awards EFF Pioneer Award (2006), The EconomistTemplate:'s Business Process Award (2008), The Global Brand Icon of the Year Award (2008)
Personal weblog
English Wikipedia userpage

Jimmy Donal "Jimbo" Wales (pronounced /ˈdoʊnəl weɪlz/; born August 7, 1966) is an American Internet entrepreneur and a co-founder and promoter of Wikipedia.

Wales was born in Huntsville, Alabama. He attended a small private school and a university preparatory school, and then earned bachelor's and master's degrees in finance. While in graduate school, he taught at two universities. Wales later took a job in finance, and worked as the research director of a Chicago futures and options firm for several years. In 1996, he and two partners founded Bomis, a web portal that targeted males, and which hosted, and provided the initial funding for, the peer-reviewed encyclopedia Nupedia (2000–2003) and for its successor, Wikipedia.

In 2001, together with Larry Sanger and others, Wales helped launch Wikipedia, a free, open-content encyclopedia which enjoyed rapid growth and popularity. As Wikipedia's public profile grew, Wales became the project's promoter and spokesman. Wales is historically cited as the co-founder of Wikipedia, though he has disputed the "co-" designation in declaring himself the sole founder. Wales serves on the Board of Trustees of the Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit charitable organization which operates Wikipedia. He holds its board-appointed "community founder" seat. In 2004, he co-founded Wikia, a privately-owned, free Web-hosting service, with fellow Wikimedia trustee Angela Beesley.

Wales has been married twice and has a daughter with Christine, his second wife, from whom he is separated. He describes himself as an Objectivist and, with reservations, a libertarian. His role in creating Wikipedia, which has become the world's largest encyclopedia, prompted Time magazine to name him in its 2006 list of the world's most influential people. Wales is the de facto leader of Wikipedia; his exact position on the project is a matter of public and press debate.

Jimmy Wales How a ragtag band created Wikipedia20:48

Jimmy Wales How a ragtag band created Wikipedia

Jimmy Wales recalls how he assembled "a ragtag band of volunteers," gave them tools for collaborating and created Wikipedia, the self-organizing, self-correcting, never-finished online encyclopedia.

This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at Jimmy Wales. The list of authors can be seen in the page history.

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