Executive Snapshot: Erik Kimel
This story was corrected on June 19, 2009. An explanation of the correction is at the end of the story.
Family: Single. "Amazing parents," Beth and Joel; and sister, Sara, 20.
Profession/business: Founder and CEO of Peer2Peer Tutors. "We make learning cool by utilizing the outstanding academic talents of area juniors and seniors in high school to provide individualized instruction and mentorship to elementary, middle or high school students in all subjects. Our service is lower-cost, we come to you and it builds incredible role model relationships. As a senior in Montgomery County public schools, I started as the first tutor in 2004 and have organically grown our student-to-student tutoring network over the past five years. At 22 years old, Peer2Peer is my full time job, working out of space in the Rockville Innovation Center, and the Shady Grove Innovation Center, after graduating from NYU Stern School of Business in 2008. Peer2Peer was voted Best Tutoring Company for 2008 by Bethesda Magazine."
Hobbies: Basketball, guitar, music, yoga, travel.
Last book read: "Two actually: The Starfish and The Spider' by Ori Brafman and Rod A. Beckstrom and Blue Ocean Strategy' by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne.
Last movie seen: "The Darjeeling Limited"
Next vacation spot: "Bethany Beach for now, but Mikanos or St. Tropez soon."
Latest accomplishment: During the 2008-09 school year, "we created 200 new jobs for top high school students, served 325 students in our local community, and our revenues are up 150 percent year to date."
How he keeps fresh ideas coming: "I talk with my MOMs, a tutor, or go tutor myself. You see, Peer2Peer is like a family. Our managers are MOMs, which stands for Management Operational Mentors, and they serve as liaisons between our clients and tutors. Since they are in direct communication with our clients and staff every day, it's crucial that I listen to what they notice in the business. Often, new ideas come over a cup of coffee at Starbucks or chocolate chip cookies in the kitchen. By listening and learning from one another, we are always thinking of new stuff. Then, it's my job to inspire our team to turn those great ideas into reality. Our goal is for every member of our organization — tutors, MOMs, clients — to be empowered and feel ownership over their work. We have a dynamic, young culture that is built upon learning, which means trying new things, building on what works, and doing less of what does not. It's how we stay ahead of the curve."
Quote: "We aren't creating computers. We are creating bicycles for the mind." — Steve Jobs, 1988 … "At the end of the day, Peer2Peer Tutors is a network that empowers students. But, we are not in the tutoring business. That's what our competitors do — they tutor. What we do is something far different and infinitely more special ... we transfer knowledge."
Correction: In this story, the spelling of the name in the headline was incorrect.