How Did I Get Here?

Dara Khosrowshahi

Chief executive officer, Expedia Inc.
  • Education
  • Hackley School, Tarrytown, N.Y., class of 1987
  • Brown University, class of 1991
  • Work Experience
  • 1991–98
    Analyst, Allen & Co.
  • 1998–99
    Vice president, senior VP for strategic planning, USA Networks
  • 1999–2000
    President of interactive, USA Networks
  • 2000–2005
    Executive VP for operations and strategic planning, EVP, chief financial officer, USA Networks/IAC
  • 2005–Present
    CEO, Expedia
  • Life Lessons
  • “Consumers may put off buying a new car or a home repair, but they’re not going to skip their summer vacations.”
  • “The ability to simplify is an underrated skill.”
  • As a boy in Iran
  • “Our family escaped Iran on the eve of the Iranian Revolution in 1978, when I was 9. We moved in with my uncle in Tarrytown. For the grown-ups, it was a difficult transition. The kids were able to party together, so it was fun.”
  • “Barry Diller was a client. He made a hostile offer for Paramount when he was at QVC, and I thought to myself, That’s the guy I want to work for.”
  • “We announced the deal to acquire Expedia, and before it closed, the Sept. 11 attacks happened. We had the opportunity to pull out. Barry said, ‘People are going to keep living and traveling, so we’re in.’ ”
  • “My wife and I got married on 12/12/12 in Las Vegas, and she was wearing a Slayer T-shirt. That tells you what kind of woman I’m lucky enough to be with. We have four kids.”
  • “We’re testing new Expedia functionality for Amazon’s Alexa. To be able to answer ‘I want to go to New York next weekend on a direct flight with two adjoining seats’ is a challenge and an opportunity.”
  • Visiting London as a 4-year-old with his cousins, 1973
  • “My father had to go back to Iran to take care of his father when I was 13 and was detained for six years before returning. My mom was raising three kids without a dad.”
  • “I was a complete failure. The cost of streaming content was higher than any advertising dollars you could earn. The better you did, the more you lost.”
  • As the superhero Flash at an Expedia party, 2014
  • “What some Americans don’t appreciate is how strong the brand of the American dream is around the world. I’m an example of how powerful that product is. And now, our president is trying to pull it away from people of a certain origin and religious belief. I find that sad and very much against what our founders set out to build.”
  • With Diller at a conference, 2016