Founder Profile: Jesse Maddox, Founder of TripLingo

2 min read
Founder Profile

Discover who’s who in the tech startup industry with Founders Network Founder Profiles. Each profile covers one of our founders, their startup vision, achievements and current focus. In addition, they share key insights about their most valuable lessons learned, greatest mentors and tips for staying motivated.

Tech startup founder of TripLingo

Jesse Maddox, Founder of TripLingo

Jesse Maddox

Member Cohort:
February 2012


Brown University
BS. Philosophy

Prior Experience:

Current startup:

To enable people to learn critical bits of language and culture to maximize their travel time abroad.


  • Raised a $250k seed round in June 2011
  • Launched mobile app on iOS and Android supporting 12 languages
  • Secured major (unannounced) partnerships in December 2011

Lessons learned:
“The reality of doing a startup is a lot of hard work!  It really is a full-time job. There’s no ‘overnight success’ waiting on your doorstep; creating anything meaningful and worthwhile simply takes time. To survive you have to be adaptable to change, as well as all the unforeseen potential roadblocks that challenge you along the way.”

Staying motivated:
“The best way to stay motivated through the ups and downs of founding a startup is to have passion and belief. You have to believe in whatever it is you’re doing. Lows are inevitable. When they do hit, you’ll discover if that passion and belief are truly there. So be picky about the business you decide to go into and be passionate about it. Also, be sure to get feedback from the people who really like it and relish all the small victories along the way.”

Biggest Mentor:
“I don’t really have one specific mentor. Im a big fan of history and biographies of other entrepreneurs. I think it depends on the situation. Different people can have the right experience to lend advice in a certain area. Besides, most people are pretty open and willing to offer advice and mentorship as needed.”

Share With Your Network

Looking for startup advice, connections, and insights?

Tap into a global network that enables you to answer questions, build relationships, and gain the perspective you need to move faster.
Peer mentorship with fellow tech founders
Pitch practice with Tier 1 VCs
Accelerator grade discounts