Steve Huffman is the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Reddit, a social news aggregation and discussion website. Claiming to be the "front page of the internet," as of February 2021, Reddit ranks as the 18th-most-visited website in the world and 7th most-visited website in the U.S. In 2006, at the age of 22, Huffman sold the site to Vogue publisher Condé Nast for millions. Afterward, Huffman launched the airfare search-engine website Hipmunk and was named to Inc. Magazine's “30 Under 30” list in 2011 and the Forbes “30 Under 30” list in 2012.
A few years later, Huffman returned as CEO of Reddit, where he has led the company's full site redesign while growing the Reddit community to over 430 million monthly users. In addition to his work at Reddit, Huffman is a mentor at Hackbright Academy, a San Francisco-based coding school for women. He also balances his time on the board of advisors for the Anti-Defamation League's Center for Technology and Society.
A Virginia native, Huffman's decision to enroll at the University of Virginia proved to be a fortuitous life decision. He applied to UVA early-decision, hoping for admittance to the Jefferson Scholars program. He didn't end up a Jefferson Scholar, but thought he lucked out in another way when he arrived and met Alexis Ohanian in the dorms. He and Ohanian hit it off immediately, bonding over video games, humor and "computer stuff."
During one semester the pair went to Boston to hear Paul Graham, a notable programmer and entrepreneur, speak at a lecture. The duo was inspired at the lecture and later Graham invited the two UVA students to apply for his startup incubator. Originally, Huffman had an idea for a business for ordering food via SMS, called My Mobile menu, but it was rejected. He and Ohanian were invited to make another pitch. They put together plans for a website that would eventually become Reddit. They launched the site in June of 2005, just a few months after Huffman graduated from UVA with a Bachelor of Science degree in computer science.
Since leaving Virginia to focus on his Reddit CEO duties, Huffman has made an effort to return to his alma mater. Over the years he’s given numerous talks on campus, including in 2016, when he was invited back as the Keynote Speaker at UVA's Ring Ceremony. Other times he’s been known to show up at Rice Hall, one of the newer buildings for the engineering program at UVA, to answer questions from students wanting a more nuanced view on what it’s like working in the tech industry. Then in 2019 Huffman teamed back up with his former roommate, and Reddit Co-founder, Ohanian, for a special dedication ceremony at Alderman Library at UVA. The school honored Huffman's legacy by installing a sign marking the birthplace of Reddit. Because it was at that exact place that Ohanian and Huffman first registered the domain Reddit.com, thus making history for them, and the rest of the UVA community.