Katlyn Grasso is the Founder and CEO of GenHERation®, which is a network where young women and companies connect. In her role as CEO, she has created GenHERation® Discovery Days, hosted the GenHERation® Summer Leadership Series, developed original GenHERation® webisodes, launched the GenHERation® product line, and has grown the GenHERation® community to reach more than 600,000 young women. Katlyn is a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania where she received a B.S. in Economics with concentrations in finance and strategic globalization. She received the inaugural Penn President’s Engagement Prize, which provides graduating seniors with $150,000 to develop ventures that have the potential to change the world. Katlyn was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 List as one of the most influential entrepreneurs in the world. Katlyn has been recognized as one of the world’s leading experts on women’s leadership and entrepreneurship by Melinda Gates’ Pivotal Ventures.
Katlyn is a serial entrepreneur who has started two nonprofit organizations, the dance exercise program Tap for Tots, and a technology commercialization venture. During her time at Penn, she was the Managing Practice Leader of the Wharton Small Business Development Center (SBDC). She was responsible for managing the daily operations of the High Impact Growth Consulting Program, which included overseeing the work of more than 60 undergraduate and MBA students and 80 cases per year. Within an 18-month period, she helped the SBDC team generate $30 million in revenue and new investments for their clients. She was a founding team member of the SBDC’s Accelerator Program and served as the CEO of the Women’s Vertical. In recognition of her contributions to the Wharton SBDC, Katlyn received the Wells Fargo Distinguished Leadership Award.
Katlyn is an avid researcher and has conducted international research on leadership development in girls. She has interviewed more than 2,500 girls, 5,000 executives, and 2,500 educators across all 50 states, 20 countries, and 6 continents. She created the Leadership Camp for Girls 2013 to test her research hypotheses. As a recipient of the Wharton Social Impact Research Experience (SIRE) Grant, she studied how girls’ consumption of media influences leadership development in the 21st century. She completed an independent study with Wharton’s Vice Dean of Social Impact to analyze female leadership development through a literature review. She also worked with Wharton’s Management Department to organize an analysis of the global venture capital industry.
Katlyn is a frequent television and radio contributor and has appeared across more than 50 outlets, including CNBC, NBC, Bloomberg, Fox Business, Fast Company, Forbes, The Huffington Post, CBS, Yahoo! Finance, Wharton Magazine, and SiriusXM. Katlyn is a Seventeen Power Girl and was also named to the magazine’s list of “Real Girls Doing Amazing Things.” Katlyn was selected to participate in the Millennial Trains Project, a cross country trip for 25 social innovators from around the world sponsored by NBCUniversal. During the journey, she was named one of the “5 Innovators to Look Out for on the Millennial Trains Project” by Innovator’s Peak. After the trip, she was awarded an Impact Grant from NBCUniversal to produce webisodes of the GenHERation® Summer Leadership Series as one of the most innovative, socially-impactful projects that came out of the year’s journey. She was also featured on the cover of Philly Biz Magazine as the youngest woman on the “Women to Watch List.” Katlyn serves as a guest lecturer on management and negotiation at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Katlyn speaks internationally about entrepreneurship, technology, leadership, and the advancement of women, and has been a featured speaker at more than 400 events, including the Forbes CMO Excursion, The Heads Network Annual Conference, the Youth Entrepreneurship Summit, the United Nations, the North Carolina Association of Independent Schools Women in Leadership Conference, the National Coalition of Girls’ Schools Annual Conference, The Association of Boarding Schools Annual Conference, and the Wharton Global Forum in Australia. She was also invited to introduce a presidential candidate during the 2016 election.
Katlyn has received several awards for her work as an entrepreneur and researcher, including the Wharton Vice Dean’s Award of Service, Wharton Outstanding Undergraduate Research Award, Penn Student Award of Merit, Wharton Venture Award, Snider Seed Award, Social Impact Research Experience (SIRE) Grant Award, Trustees’ Council of Penn Women Grant Award, Women in Toys Scholarship recipient for being a promising female student entrepreneur, Wharton Innovation Fund Grant, Wharton Social Impact Initiative Research Grant, and the Herbert S. Steuer Memorial Prize for being one of the most outstanding Wharton students in scholarship, personality, and leadership.
An expert on entrepreneurship, finance, leadership, innovation, and negotiation, Katlyn serves as a board member of the Penn Fund Executive Board, the Penn Nursing Center for Global Women’s Health, the TCU Neeley Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and the Live Like Blaine Foundation. She served as the Tri-Chair of Momentum: The Power of Penn Women and led 200 alumni to create a history-making event that welcomed 2,360 participants across 47 states and 53 countries.