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EXIT 169 I-95s To: Franconia, Virginia and Springfield, Virginia
Never content with just one gig, super hacker whiz kid Sean Parker attended nearby Oakton High School and Chantilly High School.
When little Sean was 7, his father taught him how to program. Parker’s father, who put his family before his entrepreneurial dreams, told Parker "If you are going to take risks, take them early -- before you have a family."
Maybe Dad also should have told Sean not to break the law. Or maybe not. One night, while hacking into the network of a Fortune 500 company, Sean was unable to log out after his father unplugged and confiscated his computer keyboard. Because his IP address was exposed, FBI agents tracked down and convicted the 16-year-old. Since Sean was under 18, he was sentenced to community service.
Rewind a year. When Sean was 15, he met 14 year-old Shawn Fanning over the Internet where the two bonded over esoteric topics like theoretical physics. Now fast forward a few years. The 2 Shawns co-founded Napster, a free file-sharing service for music. Only problem was, they did not tell the music companies they were sharing their songs. Within one year, by June 2000, Napster with its black cat logo had tens of millions of users. Lawsuits by various industry groups including heavy metal band Metallica eventually shut down the business.
Napster had been called the fastest-growing business of all time. Depending on your perspective, it is credited or demonized with revolutionizing the music industry, and is considered to be a precursor to Apple’s iTunes and Spotify.
In 2004, Sean Parker saw a site called "The Facebook". He contacted the Harvard student, Mark Zuckerberg who hired him as President. He famously advised Zuckerberg to change the name from "The Facebook" to simply "Facebook".
Zuckerberg said "Sean was pivotal in helping Facebook transform from a college project into a real company." Later in 2014, no less than Justin Timberlake would play the part of Sean Parker in the major motion picture, THE SOCIAL NETWORK.
Sean Parker is now married to the beautiful artist Alexandra Lenas. They have two kids. While Sean's tenure as Facebook President ended he is still a major Facebook shareholder.
Sean now busies himself being a major philanthropist. The former hacker who grew up off the next exit’s net worth is over three billion dollars. Giving away millions, Sean is a major establishment figure in Silicon Valley. His Foundation’s main targets are eradicating malaria, understanding allergies, and curing cancer.
Not bad for a former juvenile delinquent from Virginia, right?
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