SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – Sam Altman not only leads one of the most influential startup incubators in the Silicon Valley, but also has his eye on Washington and the first 100 days of the Trump Administration.
Altman, the president of Y Combinator, sat down and spoke with KPIX 5 after a recent Commonwealth Club appearance to talk about social change and the startup culture.
When asked about how his two spheres of interest merge, Altman said it is all about charting an inclusive future.
“We need a future where everyone wins, and not just wins economically,” he said. “But also wins in terms of getting a say in the future. People want to participate.”
Altman said participation is more important today given the current political climate in the country.
“(We need) people to standup for what they believe in,” he said. “And this is not the time to sort of be quiet.”
Altman has not been shy about speaking out on his political beliefs. He tweeted a selfie at the SFO protest against President Trump’s travel ban back in January.
He has also taken to social media on other issues.
Altman also came up with the idea of a website — http://www.track-trump.com/ — to track the president’s record of fulfilling his promises.
His firm also rushed in to help the ACLU.
“They (the ACLU) are a very old, very esteemed organization,” he said. “We thought we could help them with technology and we actually had some of our own software team go out and work with them and we want to be there to support.”
For all the problems startups and engineers can solve, Altman believes the tech industry also needs to be involved in the political sphere.
“I think tech companies should at least engage more on policy and whether that’s socially active or some other way,” he said. “I think everyone’s gotta engage.”