David Paul Morris—Bloomberg/Getty Images
April 15, 2015

Back in 2004, when Mark Zuckerberg and I were starting Facebook, Reid Hoffman was the first person we called to fund the company. There has always been something different about Reid, owing to his gregarious good nature, honest advice and keen intellect. He set us up with Peter Thiel and suggested that Peter join the Facebook board; Reid was too busy launching LinkedIn, but he agreed to give us our first funding anyway.

Reid has tirelessly worked to channel the capabilities of social media toward a more productive purpose. LinkedIn succeeded in connecting the professional world, enabling social mobility on an unprecedented scale. The result was a revolution; the world was suddenly a much smaller, much more connected and ultimately much more productive place. And Reid remains a magnet for the smartest, most creative people looking to change the world through technology.

Parker is an entrepreneur, investor, and investor

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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