John Cullinane, Cullinane Group

John Cullinane formed the first successful software products company in the world at a time when industry gurus said that it couldn’t be done, others had tried and failed, and so would he. However, his company’s IPO succeeded so dramatically that it proved to Wall Street, and the computer industry, that a great deal of money could be made from treating software as a product. Many software companies followed and an industry was born.

However, like any entrepreneur, he had to manage his company through the four phases of any new venture which always begins with the idea, then the struggle to bring the idea to life, the heady success days when it all works, and the inevitable days of trouble.

John was recently honored by the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council with its prestigious Commonwealth Award for his contribution to the software industry, as well as creating the foundation for the “Big Data” opportunity in Massachusetts. John has been the recipient of many other awards and honorary degrees. They include the first honorary degree ever awarded outside the island of Ireland by the University of Ulster for his work in helping the peace process in Northern Ireland through jobs.  He was also inducted into the Babson College Academy of Distinguished Entrepreneurs, and the Infomart Information Processing Hall of Fame. In addition, he was the first Fellow in the Center for Business & Government at the Kennedy School, Harvard University.

Also, as a social entrepreneur, he created the Boston Public Library Foundation, was the first President of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, and the Founder of the Friends of Belfast. He also was a member of the Aspen Institute’s Middle East Strategy Group. John is a graduate of Northeastern University.