Mike De Paola '94

Mike De Paola is the founder and CEO of Threshold Worldwide (“Threshold”) which houses his 10+ real estate, art procurement, product development and lifestyle companies. He is based in New York City, Miami Beach and Los Angeles.

A serial entrepreneur, Mike is also a founding partner and lead investor in Ikigai Media. Ikigai is the parent company of Bodan Kuma, a full-service music production facility and record label (bodankuma.com); Bulletproof Bear, which provides music licensing and clearance, original composition, music supervision, administration and production (bulletproofbear.com); and Central Post LA (centralpostla.com), a boutique full-service post-production facility with expertise in language localization and ADR. Ikigai is based in Hollywood.

Mike started his career on Wall Street beginning in 1986, with a brief two-year hiatus to receive his MBA from UCLA Anderson. Prior to transitioning to full-time entrepreneurship in 2001, Mike worked as an equity derivatives sales trader, most recently for JP Morgan Securities.

Mike continues to be active within the Anderson community. He is the alumni president of his class, serves on the board of directors of the Alumni Association, is lead development chair for reunion giving and has served on the board of advisors at the Price Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation since 2014. Mike also takes on a prominent role in the art world. He is on the board of trustees at the Museum of Arts and Design, the Painting and Sculpture Acquisitions Committee at the Whitney Museum of American Art and the board of directors of Art Production Fund. He is chair of the art advisory board at Coalition for the Homeless (ArtWalk NY), vice chair of the board of directors at Feature Hudson Foundation and a member of the board of Urban Technology (and spokesperson for Dignity For All). Mike is also a founding advisory committee member of New Wave Art WKND in Palm Beach, Florida, which partnered with Pittsburgh-based nonprofit City of Asylum to establish an immigrant artist residency program in West Palm Beach.

In November 2012, Mike was recognized in the Wall Street Journal as its “Donor of the Day” for his work with Coalition for the Homeless (“Coalition”) and in 2016, Coalition honored Mike alongside artist Kenny Scharf. Last December, Mike was the focus of “The Collector’s Eye,” an article written about him in The Art Newspaper during Art Basel Miami Beach and, in the same month, was referred to as a “Super Collector” by Architectural Digest.

Mike lives in New York City with his 10-year-old Weimaraner, Andy. He also resides in Los Angeles and Miami Beach. Mike has three daughters, two are currently attending University of Michigan and one is in high school in New York.

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