Astronauts, who have the opportunity to view Earth from space, experience a cognitive shift called the overview effect.

Reflect on the fact that we are all part of an interconnected system. Your impact is real and tangible.

Let your innate desire to affect the world in a way that is forcefully good drive you.


About US

Founded in 2015 by Boryana and JB Straubel, the Straubel Family Foundation's programmatic focus is on global sustainability, science, education and human potential.

We’re influenced by the concept of the Overview Effect, coined by Frank White to describe the perspective induced by viewing the Earth as a whole, which galvanized thinking about the planet as an interconnected system, and our intrinsic interest in a sustainable society.

In this formative stage, the Straubel Foundation wants to emphasize experimentation. It’s an open road, and we plan to enjoy the journey. Our guiding principles are:

  • Small initiatives can have big impact.
  • We are ready to support the technology of the future.
  • Ideas matter. The leader driving them matters even more.
  • Real and sustainable transformation means changing everyday behavior.

Straubel Foundation is currently applying these principles in the sustainability field, focused on: recognition of leadership, impact investments, and education.

Recognition of Leadership

Because many mentors have contributed to Boryana and JB’s trajectories, they strive to pay it forward through the Straubel Foundation: to be there for the next generation of young leaders with big ideas. The Straubel Foundation discovers talent organically, through referrals and through our annual leadership awards.

Our purpose is to be a positive catalyst in their lives, increasing their ability to do more than they could ever imagine. We help grow emerging leaders by supporting their work so that they may learn and shine. We stay by their side to coach. We partner with our rising stars and help them identify their individual “super powers” and assist them in architecting a professional path that can maximize their personal impact. We also support our rising stars by introducing them to key people in their field.



We are proud of being a positive influence in the life of the future leaders of this world.

Straubel supports young people as they pursue their passions in science and engineering. One example is our partnership with Stanford Professor Jane Woodward and Amory Lovins, giving a select group of Stanford students exposure to path-breaking ideas in energy during a weeklong Extreme Energy Efficiency Class at the Rocky Mountain Institute. Founded by Amory Lovins, Rocky Mountain Institute is famous for big picture thinking, and provided a fruitful collaboration opportunity.


Impact Investments

Science & Engineering We are ready to support the technology of the future. Often, a great idea has difficulty finding support because it is ahead of its time. It might be too risky, not profitable enough, not trendy, or simply unanticipated by all local policies. Yet if such idea could benefit our society, we should do our best to make it happen.

Social Innovation Long-lasting transformation means changing our everyday behavior. Such change is hard. Many forces pull people towards the most profitable ideas, not the best ideas. The Straubel Foundation strives to identify ideas and projects that will positively impact tomorrow and invest in them today.

Our Learning Partnership with Echoing Green is a critical part of our effort to invest in impact entrepreneurship. Echoing Green has spent decades supporting visionaries around the world who are transforming their communities.  Its staff have fashioned rigorous processes, honed dialogues and mastered tools to identify tomorrow’s transformational leaders.


THE Founders

Boryana Straubel, Executive Director is passionate about growing future leaders. Over a decade at Tesla and the Wikimedia Foundation, Boryana applied her expertise in identifying and developing human potential and top performance. Boryana is also an Analytics and Operations powerhouse and has led key functions such as People Analytics, HR Data and Systems, HR Operation, Business Analytics, Change Management, Talent Acquisition, Performance Management and M&A Integration.

Boryana holds an B.S. in Economics from University of California Berkeley and is pursuing two graduate degrees at Stanford University -- M.S. in Management Science & Engineering and M.S. Management (MSx Sloan). A life-long learner and global nomad, Boryana was born and raised in Bulgaria, and has lived in Germany, Austria, Russia, and since 2005 the United States.


JB Straubel is Co-founder and Chief Technical Officer at Tesla, where he focuses on technical direction and engineering design including battery technology, power electronics, motors, software, firmware and controls. JB in an inventor on over 30 patents covering most areas of Tesla’s core battery, motor and controls systems.

In addition to his work at Tesla, JB is a lecturer at his alma mater, Stanford University, where he created an engineering class and lab focused on energy storage integration (CEE 176C) in the Engineering Department.

JB received a BS in Energy Systems Engineering and an MS in Energy Engineering, emphasis on energy conversion, both from Stanford University.