METTA HOUR PODCAST • Episode 163 • Vlada Bortnik

For episode 163 of the Metta Hour Podcast, Sharon speaks with Vlada Bortnik. Vlada is co-founder and CEO of Marco Polo, the popular video communication app that so many have relied on in this past year and a half of covid! Vlada is an immigrant from the former Soviet Union, and her path to Silicon Valley has been one of determination and steadfast passion for making the world a happier place. Vlada’s approach to life as a busy mom and tech CEO is grounded in mindfulness and meditation. The conversation starts with Vlada and Sharon discussing Marco Polo and how the app has connected folks, especially during COVID. Vlada shares her observations about how the development of email, text, and social media has changed the way that people connect in the last twenty years and how the evolution of public-facing connections has increased loneliness for so many. They talk about the Marco Polo app and the different features it offers to promote real connection. Vlada shares about her early life and how her family immigrated to the United States from the Soviet Union. Sharon tells some stories about her covertly teaching meditation in the Soviet Union in the late 1980s with Joseph Goldstein. They talk about how Vlada came to meditation practice and how it has affected her life as a mother, her work life as a CEO, and the culture she has built at Marco Polo.


Metta Hour Podcast

About The Metta Hour

Sharon’s Metta Hour Podcast features Buddhist wisdom for everyday life. With over three million downloads, Sharon’s wisdom and humor translate these ancient teachings, making them instantly accessible. Subscribe to this podcast on iTunes for regular episodes. Make a donation to support the continuation of these podcasts.

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May all beings be happy ♡