Jimmy Wales

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Person.png Jimmy Wales   Sourcewatch Website WikiquoteRdf-icon.png
(Internet entrepreneur, formerly, financial trader)
Wales Garvey.jpg
Born James Donal Wales
7 August 1966
Huntsville, Alabama, U.S.
Alma mater Auburn University, University of Alabama
Children 3 daughters
Spouse • Christine Rohan
• Kate Garvey
Founder of Wikipedia

Jimmy Wales (born 7 August 1966), also known by the online moniker Jimbo,[1] is an American Internet entrepreneur,[2] best known as the co-founder of the online non-profit encyclopedia Wikipedia, and the for-profit web hosting company Wikia.

Jimmy Wales was born in Huntsville, Alabama, where he attended Randolph School, a university-preparatory school.[3] Later, he earned bachelor's and master's degrees in Finance from Auburn University and the University of Alabama, respectively.

While in graduate school, Wales taught at two universities; however, he departed before completing a PhD to take a job in finance, and later worked as the Research Director of a Chicago, Illinois, futures and options firm. In 1996, he and two partners founded Bomis, an adult web portal featuring entertainment and adult content. The company would provide the initial funding for the peer-reviewed free encyclopedia, Nupedia (2000–03), and its successor, Wikipedia.

On 15 January 2001, with Larry Sanger and others, Wales launched Wikipedia—a free, open content encyclopedia that enjoyed rapid growth and popularity; as Wikipedia's public profile grew, he became the project's promoter and spokesman. He is historically cited as a co-founder of Wikipedia, though he has disputed the "co-" designation, declaring himself the sole founder.

Wales serves on the Wikimedia Foundation Board of Trustees, the non-profit charitable organisation that he helped establish to operate Wikipedia, holding its board-appointed "community founder" seat. In 2004, he co-founded Wikia, a for-profit wiki hosting service. His role in creating Wikipedia, which has become the world's largest encyclopedia, prompted Time Magazine to name him in their 2006 list of "The 100 Most Influential People in the World".[4]


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  1. Garside, Juliette (August 3, 2014). "Jimmy Wales: digital champion of [[free speech]]". The Observer. London. Retrieved December 26, 2017. URL–wikilink conflict (help)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Horovitz, David (January 7, 2011). "Jimmy Wales's benevolent Wikipedia wisdom". The Jerusalem Post. Retrieved December 26, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. Walden, Lea Ann, et al. (spring 2013). "Where Are They Now?". Randolph Magazine Archived August 27, 2014, at the Wayback Machine. 18 (1). pp. 20–27. Retrieved August 26, 2014.
  4. "2006 TIME 100 Jimmy Wales". Time. May 8, 2006. Retrieved December 26, 2017.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
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