Jesse Thorn

Jesse Thorn


MaxFun OG & Host

Jesse founded the original Maximum Fun and is now a worker-owner of the co-op.

Get in touch with Jesse


Bullseye began as The Sound of Young America in 2000, while Thorn was still a student at the University of California at Santa Cruz. In 2007, the show began to be distributed by Public Radio International, making Jesse the youngest national host in public radio history. The show became Bullseye in 2012, and in 2013 it began being distributed by NPR. The show currently airs on NPR stations around the country.

As owner of, Jesse oversees a network of more than two dozen podcasts, along with video and other content production. The company helped set the template for the modern podcast network, and continues to be a leader in independent, audience-supported media production. Fast Company magazine called Thorn “the most important person in entertainment you’ve never heard of.”

In addition to his work at, Thorn hosts and helps produce Put This On, one of the country’s most popular web series and blogs about men’s style. He also hosted The Grid, a culture recommendation program on IFC, The Sound of Young America on Current TV and has appeared on IFC’s Comedy Bang Bang among other television outlets.

A native of San Francisco’s Mission District, Jesse lives in Los Angeles with his wife, podcaster and author Theresa Thorn, three children, and a dog.

Jesse is available for public speaking engagements, consulting and voiceover projects – please send inquiries to

Speaking Engagements

Jesse has spoken on independent media, podcasting, journalism and storytelling at companies and gatherings around the world.

His speaking engagements have included:
  • Visiting Speaker on storytelling at Walt Disney Animation
  • Featured Speaker on the present and future of podcasting at South by Southwest Interactive
  • Featured Speaker on diversity in public media at the Public Radio Program Director’s conference, PRPD
  • Featured Speaker on independent creative work at Calgary Folk Music Festival’s Folk Boot Camp, Alberta, Canada
  • Speaker on alternative production models for public media at the Integrated Media Association annual conference
  • Guest Speaker on new models for creative entrepreneurship at the Los Angeles Council of the Humanities, University of Southern California
  • Guest Lecturer, CalArts: California Institute of the Arts, Valencia, California
  • Guest Lecturer on multimedia production, at Monmouth University, New Jersey
  • Guest Lecturer on Jay-Z and hip-hop culture, University of California, Berkeley
  • Guest Speaker on creative careers at School of the Arts, San Francisco
  • Keynote Speaker on the power of corduroy and threat posed by velvet at the Corduroy Appreciation Society Grand Meeting, New York City (yes, really.)

Voiceover Artist

Jesse is equipped with a home studio and capable of easily recording high-quality voiceover auditions and roles from the studios in Los Angeles. His past voiceover projects have included liners and announcements for BBC radio, identity work for Comedy Central; in-theater messages for the Bumbershoot Music & Arts Festival; imaging for the Gates Foundation-funded NGO, and many others. Even English-language instructional courses for Japanese students, one time when he was just out of college and really broke.

Photo credit: Ibarionex Perello

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