I received a Ph.D. from Purdue University in Organizational Studies. I have taught at the University of North Carolina, Westminster College and Utah State University. I have developed numerous courses in entrepreneurship, business strategy, management and organizational behavior. I have built two centers for entrepreneurship: The Institute for New Enterprise at Westminster College, and the Clark Center for Entrepreneurship in the Jon Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University. I have helped hundreds of students develop business opportunities, write business plans and launch companies.
I have launched and built successful companies in the retail, food service, consulting and educational industries. I am the founder and former CEO of Golden Swirl Management Company and the cofounder and former Chairman of Northern Lights. Under my leadership, our team created one of the first lines of frozen dessert products with no fat and low calories. We grew these two divisions into a multimillion dollar business with 500 employees, and then sold the company to Yogen Fruz International, a world leader in the frozen dessert industry. In 2010, I launched “My New Enterprise,” an online training company for aspiring entrepreneurs and business builders (www.mynewenterprise.com). Our company creates state-of-the-art programs for corporations, universities, direct selling companies and government agencies.
I have worked with numerous clients from new startups to large corporations. I have consulted on a variety of topics including new venture creation, strategic planning, market research, corporate restructuring and leadership development. My clients have included Associated Food Stores, Boeing Airlines, Department of Workforce Services, Evans and Sutherland, Esso of Inter-America, FMC Minerals, Harmon Music Group, Kaiser Permanente, Kennecott Copper, Northwest Pipeline, Saudi Consolidated Electric Company, Jamberry Nails, Stampin’ Up, Syntek Global and USANA Health Sciences.
I believe entrepreneurs who have built successful companies are the best teachers of business building. Consequently, I have spent nearly two decades collecting oral histories from hundreds of thriving entrepreneurs across the country. I have documented the stories of Dave Neeleman, founder of JetBlue and Azul Airlines, Bill Child, who sold his business to Warren Buffett, and Jon Schmidt, cofounder of The Piano Guys. I have also interviewed some of the top social entrepreneurs in the world like Henri Landwirth, founder of Give Kids the World, Anthony Shriver, founder of Best Buddies International, Nancy Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and Mimi Silbert, founder of Delancey Street, the most successful rehabilitation program in the world for convicted felons. I have used the lessons I have learned from these amazing role models in my speaking and writing.
I have spoken at numerous professional conferences including the Summit on Corporate Entrepreneurship, International Entrepreneurs Conference, iWorq Annual Convention, New Entrepreneurial Breed Conference, Jamberry Nails Leadership Meeting and the Annual DECA Convention. I have also spoken at many universities including Arizona State, Brigham Young, University of Maryland, Southern Virginia, University of Utah, Air Force Academy, University of Oregon, Thunderbird Graduate School of International Management, and others.
I have published numerous articles in magazines and three books on entrepreneurship: Glorious Accidents, The Business of Heart, and my latest book, Main Street Entrepreneur, which introduces a proven roadmap for starting and building a successful company. The powerful practices presented were gleaned from interviews I conducted with 100 entrepreneurs during a cross-country bicycle ride from the west coast of Oregon to the east coast of Virginia. I rode 4,000 miles in 45 days, spent 246 hours on a bike seat, and visited more than 100 cities. The innovative entrepreneurs I discovered are masters at merging livelihood and lifestyle. They find a community they love, and then find something they love doing in that community to take care of themselves. In the process they are creating regional, national and international companies.