10K80 by Matthew McKibben July 28, 2017
Early in his career, Russell Okung realized he had a platform that he could use to achieve some lofty goals. As a young player on a great Seattle Seahawks team, Okung quickly established himself as a premier offensive lineman in the NFL.
He signed a massive rookie contract, won a Superbowl, and made a Pro Bowl.
But Okung wanted more. He wanted to accomplish something special off of the field. So along with his business partner Andrew McGee, Okung established the GREATER Foundation with the goal of diversifying the tech sector.
To meet that goal, Okung works with young people from underserved communities to teach them skills for 21st century opportunities in the tech world. A handful of students have graduated from the program and gone on to jobs at Amazon and IBM.
Playing in Seattle opened the Houston native’s eyes to the burgeoning tech world. Since then, Okung has been an active investor in tech startups, including some wearable tech companies. But he doesn’t just sign a check and walk away.
Okung is active in the day-to-day operations of his investments, a role he feels is very important. He told SportTechie in January:
“If I’m a founder, I want someone who can really support my company’s growth and the work that I do. So many players can do that. That’s why it’s become so appealing.”
Okung is a rising star in the tech world and signed a 4-year contract worth $53 million with the Chargers this summer.
Playing on the Chargers during their first season in Los Angeles should be a great opportunity to expand his brand.
Russell Okung is ready to dominate both the gridiron and Silicon Valley, just watch.