My failures are just as essential to my growth as my successes are, I wish I’d learned that sooner, but I absolutely know it now.

SOMETHING PEOPLE DON'T USUALLY KNOW ABOUT ME: I acted in a 5 minute film about Grindr that was screened at Cannes. SOMETHING THAT MAKES ME GO "AWW": Cute dogs! Every time. EARLIEST ENTREPRENEURIAL MEMORY: My parents are both entrepreneurs, as were their grandparents. I remember watching my father work and hearing my grandfather discuss his businesses from the time I was 3 or 4.

Gordon Wilson

Bringing the next generation of artificial intelligence

BUILDING BRIDGES THROUGH STORYTELLING. Gordon Hirsch Wilson considers himself a storyteller. At least as Co-Founder and CEO of Rain Neuromorphics, the world’s first fully analog hardware for artificial intelligence, that’s what he believes is fundamental to his success.

“What Rain does is complex, so I’m highly focused on weaving together the narrative threads: about technology, where we’re going, what has proceeded in the past, what’s considered the industry status quo, and new levels of artificial intelligence. It’s not always easy to digest, so being a good storyteller has become essential,” Gordon explains.

Creating a product that understands the brain and its physics has helped Rain “enable a new generation of hardware that looks and functions far more similarly to the way a brain would.” To that end, Rain is looking to make the future of A.I. less artificial and more intelligent than ever. “This is what’s called neuromorphic hardware, and while Rain isn’t the only company building this kind of hardware, we’re taking a far more advanced approach to the research and development.”

NAVIGATING A NON-LINEAR PATH. Growing up in an intergenerational family of entrepreneurs, Gordon has always had business on his mind. “Not only were both of my parents entrepreneurs, they had a shared interest in science fiction. Growing up we had these massive bookshelves filled with science fiction books and that absolutely formed the way I saw the world,” he adds, “and I would ask questions.”

Gordon’s passion for understanding often led him to nonlinear pathways. “I struggled a lot with depression related to my coming out experience. Between high school and college, I struggled. I ultimately dropped out of college and had a bit of an identity crisis about who I am, where I was going, and what I was going to become at times,” he explains.

For a while, he worked in politics, helping to elect Florida’s first openly LGBTQ State Representative, before returning to college. “I decided to transfer my schooling to the University of Florida, to study mathematics—which I’d always loved as a kid,” Gordon says.

This was where everything started to finally take shape for Gordon. “At the university I was able to finally start to see myself, my experiences, skills, in a more complex and interconnected way. I loved exploring technology. I loved tackling tough questions. I love the act of visualization.” Gordon engaged more and gained confidence, joining the Data Science Student Organization, which at the time was led by Jack Kendall, Rain’s current CTO and Co-Founder (along with Juan Nino, Chief Scientific Advisor).

In many ways, Gordon realized the success of Rain was forged by the turbulent struggles he had coming out as a gay man. “My experiences with loss, with rejection, with self-identification, allowed me to see how to push past trauma, how to re-frame confusion—but it also made me more empathetic and to see the power in vulnerability.”

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