Peter Samuelson, CEO of Aspire
Peter Samuelson has thirty years experience at the intersection of media and social change and has been described as a serial pro-social entrepreneur. Peter is a graduate of Cambridge University with a Masters in English Literature and the fourth of five family generations employed in the film industry. A member of the initial board of Participant Media, Jeff Skoll's pro-social media company, Samuelson has produced and executive produced 25 motion pictures including Wilde, Arlington Road, Revenge of the Nerds, and Tom & Viv, as well as television and interactive media.
In 1983, Samuelson co-founded the Starlight Children's Foundation www.starlight.org, a leading multi-national charity now serving 6 million seriously ill children and their families each year. In 1995, Samuelson and Steven Spielberg co-founded Starbright World, the first fully interactive multi-media, online social network, a virtual playground for ill children that still operates internationally, 24 hours a day. In 1999 Peter co-founded www.firststar.org, a national advocacy non-profit representing abused and neglected children and, in 2006, he launched www.edar.org, a non-profit that provides single-user portable housing to our nation's urban homeless.
Peter has lectured extensively on philanthropic entrepreneurship and pro-social media. He served as Chairman of the Executive Committee of Panavision, Inc. and serves on the Committee that selects the winners of the Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Mr. Samuelson is President of ASPIRE – the Academy for Social Purpose in Responsible Entertainment, which teaches pro-social media to undergraduates across disciplines, piloted at the University of California, Los Angeles.