Sukhar was born in Moscow. His family immigrated to the USA in 1989 and settled in Sunnyvale, California. He attended The Harker School for high school and then went to Cornell University where he earned a B.S. and an M.Eng. in Computer Science. He was admitted to the Y Combinator program as a solo founder of Parse in the summer of 2011. In 2013. Facebook purchased Parse. Ilya is now also a part-time partner at Y-Combinator.