Keller Rinaudo Cliffton
Keller Rinaudo Cliffton is a robotics and healthcare innovator who is showing the world how drone technology can be used to save lives. He is the CEO and co-founder of Zipline, the largest commercial autonomous system on earth, which delivers life-saving medical supplies to hospitals and health centers on demand. The company currently operates in parts of Africa and Japan, as well as within multiple U.S. states. A former TED main stage speaker, Mr. Rinaudo Cliffton was named to the 2020 “Bloomberg 50” list, as one of the 2019 “TIME 100 Next,” and as one of Fortune’s 2019 and 2021 “40 under 40,” among other accolades. Zipline’s groundbreaking partnership with the country of Rwanda will ultimately put all 11 million of the country’s citizens within a 20 to 30-minute delivery of blood and any essential medical product. Zipline has also worked closely with the Vaccine Alliance (Gavi), UPS and the Gates Foundation. Zipline has expanded into Ghana, covering 2,000 health facilities and hospitals and facilitating the instant delivery of more than 100 different medical products there. The company has begun providing similar logistics and delivery services in Nigeria and Japan as well. Zipline has also played a significant role in the support of COVID-19 relief efforts, receiving FAA approval to partner with Novant Health to distribute personal protective equipment and medical equipment in several U.S. states, as well as the COVAX Initiative to deliver COVID-19 vaccines to those in need. In 2020, Zipline partnered with Walmart to launch the first-of-its kind on-demand drone delivery of health and wellness products in the U.S. Before founding Zipline, Mr. Rinaudo Cliffton was a software engineer with a special interest in robots and autonomous systems. A graduate of Harvard University, he built computers out of RNA and DNA that operate in human cells as molecular doctors and published this research in Nature Biotechnology, becoming one of the youngest first authors in that publication’s history. He currently oversees a team of 150 flight engineers and operators formerly of companies like SpaceX, Boeing and Google based in the San Francisco Bay Area and Rwanda.