Louis Black
Co-Founder, Austin Chronicle and South By Southwest
Louis Black, Co-Founder, The Austin Chronicle and South by Southwest

Louis Black is a co-founder and editor of The Austin Chronicle and is a co-founder of the annual South by Southwest festival. He also is a founding partner in Toronto's North by Northeast music and film festival. Black was an original board member of the Austin Film Society and helped establish the Texas Film Hall of Fame.

Brian Sharples
Co-Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, HomeAway
Brian Sharples, Co-founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, HomeAway

Sharples co-founded HomeAway with Carl Shepherd in February 2005. He raised over $400 million in private funding to build one of the most popular vacation rental websites around the world, and Sharples is basking in the glow of success yet again on the heels of a $3.9 billion buyout by Expedia.

Jessica Honegger & Travis Wilson
Noonday Collection

Jessica Honegger & Travis Wilson, Co-CEOs, Noonday Collection

Jessica Honegger and Travis Wilson lead Noonday Collection, a socially responsible fashion brand that sells an exclusive collection of handmade jewelry and accessories made by artisans across the globe. Jessica founded Noonday Collection in 2010 as a fundraiser to support the adoption of her son from Rwanda, and it was recently recognized as the 45th fastest-growing company in the U.S. by Inc. magazine.

Caryl Stern
President and CEO, U.S. Fund for UNICEF

Caryl Stern, President and CEO, U.S. Fund for UNICEF

Caryl M. Stern is President and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF. Since joining the U.S. Fund in 2006 after helping lead the Anti-Defamation League, Stern has made it her mission to put children first, traveling to more than 30 countries in support of UNICEF's work to save and protect the world's most vulnerable children. Caryl has spearheaded the organization's efforts to help UNICEF aid children affected by disasters, including the 2010 Haiti earthquake, the 2011 East Africa drought, and the current Ebola crisis.

Marc Seriff
CEO, Long Center for the Performing Arts and Co-Founder, America Online

Marc Seriff, CEO, Long Center for the Performing Arts and Co-Founder, America Online

In 1985, Mr. Seriff became the founding CTO of America Online (AOL) leading the engineering and operations teams. In 1994, he was named the first AOL Fellow, a position he held until his retirement. After retiring from AOL he returned to Central Texas where he has been actively involved in the non-profit community. In the summer of 2015, he joined the Long Center staff as VP, Special Projects and in March, 2016 he was named the Long Center's Chief Executive Officer.


Nav Soochs
CEO, Ketra, Inc. and Chairman, Silicon Labs
Nav Sooch, CEO, Ketra, Inc. and Chairman, Silicon Labs

Nav Sooch is the co-founder of one of Austin's most successful tech companies: Silicon Laboratories, where he has served as chairman of the board since its inception in 1996 and for a few years its CEO. He is also the CEO of Ketra Inc., a private Austin-based company that creates and supplies premium digital lighting systems. Nav is also the founder and chairman of Sooch Foundation, a privately funded charitable foundation striving to make a positive and permanent change in the lives of economically disadvantaged people in Austin through increased educational opportunities.

Allen Gilmer
Allen Gilmer, Co-Founder, Drillinginfo

Prior to co-founding Drillinginfo in 1999, Allen was an independent oilman for 7 years, co-founding three profitable E&P companies. He began his oil patch career with Marathon Oil Corporation, as a geophysicist working in Research, Seismic Acquisitions, and South American exploration. Allen is active in all aspects of Drillinginfo's new product development and is widely recognized for his industry leadership and vision. He holds several patents in the field of multi-component seismology. He received his BA in Geology from Rice University and his MS in Geology from University of Texas at El Paso.

Terry Lickona
Executive Producer
Austin City Limits
Terry Lickona, Executive Producer, Austin City Limits

Since 1978, Terry Lickona has been the producer/executive producer of Austin City Limits, and more recently he has been co-producer of the Grammy Awards Show. Celebrating its 40th anniversary on PBS, ACL is the longest-running music series on American television. Terry has produced over 1,000 programs for public television, cable, domestic and foreign syndication, home video, and DVD, with artists ranging from Ray Charles and Johnny Cash to Coldplay and Arcade Fire.

Ally & Jeff Davidson
Co-Founders and
Camp Gladiator
Ally & Jeff Davidson, Co-Founders and Co-CEOs, Camp Gladiator

Since founding Camp Gladiator in late 2008, the company has grown to be one of the fastest-growing in Austin and Ally Davidson was just named an Entrepreneur Of The Year winner. In addition to their leadership at Camp Gladiator, Ally and Jeff Davidson are also founders of the nonprofit youth adventure camp, CG Victory.

Bob Fabbio
Serial Entrepreneur
Bob Fabbio, Serial Entrepreneur

Widely known as a visionary, Bob Fabbio is a successful serial entrepreneur and venture capitalist. He has founded and built multiple industry-changing companies, including Tivoli Systems, DAZEL Corporation and WhiteGlove Health, by identifying large emerging markets, gaining intimate knowledge of market needs, challenging conventional wisdom, and bringing targeted, innovative solutions to market. His transformational impact on the software, systems technology and healthcare industries has resulted in the creation of over $1.5 billion of shareholder value at time of exit. His latest brainchild — eRelevance Corp. — changes the economics and response time of traditional marketing companies and offloads the work marketing automation tools put on small- to medium-sized businesses.

Michael Rypka
Torchy's Tacos

Michael Rypka, Founder, Torchy's Tacos

Mike has been devoted to the culinary industry for the last 27 years. From his introductory gig at Popeye's Chicken to his current task of restaurant founder and owner, he's a man with a passion for damn good food. He's been the executive chef for the World Bank, Enron, Disney, MTV Studios, and more. In 2006 he ditched the executive affairs and started Torchy's Taocs, which now operates over 40 locations throughout Texas, Colorado, and Oklahoma.

Jeff Turnas
365 by Whole Foods Market

Jeff Turnas, President, 365 by Whole Foods Market

Jeff Turnas, the new president of 365 by Whole Foods Market, was appointed to lead the new retail store brand in June 2015 after working his way up the Whole Foods corporate ladder since 1998. The stores, which aim to turn the grocery industry on its head, began opening this year and offer convenience and quality with everyday low prices on natural and organic products that meet Whole Foods Market's industry-leading quality standards.

Maria Rodale
CEO and Chairman
Rodale, Inc.

Maria Rodale, CEO and Chairman, Rodale, Inc.

Maria Rodale  is the CEO and Chairman of Rodale, Inc., the world's largest independent publisher of health, wellness, and environmental content and the largest independent book publisher in the United States. She is the third generation of the Rodale family to lead the company, which was founded by her grandfather J.I. Rodale in 1930 and later led by both her father, Robert Rodale, and mother, Ardath Rodale.

Roy Spence
Co-Founder & Chairman
Roy Spence is Co-Founder and Chairman of GSD&M

Roy Spence is Co-Founder and Chairman of GSD&M, a leading marketing communications and advertising company based in Austin. He is also Co-Founder and CEO of The Purpose Institute, a consulting firm that helps people and organizations discover and live their purpose. Along with Haley Rushing, Roy co-authored the Wall Street Journal bestselling book, "It's Not What You Sell, It's What You Stand For: Why Every Extraordinary Business is Driven by Purpose." And, most recently he authored "The 10 Essential Hugs of life," a collection of heartwarming reminders about the need for gratitude, love and goodness.

Under Roy's leadership, his agency has helped grow some of the world's most successful brands like "Don't Mess with Texas," Southwest Airlines, Wal-Mart, DreamWorks, the PGA TOUR, BMW, the U.S. Air Force, L.L.Bean and the Clinton Foundation. Roy has been a trusted advisor to legendary leaders including Sam Walton and Southwest Airlines founder Herb Kelleher. His counsel has also been sought by U.S. presidents and leaders in the State Department.

Roy has received a lifetime achievement award from the Austin Advertising Federation and was named Adman of the Century by Texas Monthly magazine. He was inducted into the McCombs School of Business Hall of Fame in 2012.

Walter Robb
Whole Foods Market
Walter Robb, CO-CEO, Whole Foods Market

With a long and varied entrepreneurial history in natural foods ranging from retailer to farmer to consultant, Walter Robb joined joined Whole Foods Market in 1991 and in 2010, was named Co-CEO along with John Mackey at which time he joined the Whole Foods Market Board of Directors. He is on the Board of Regents for the University of the Pacific and serves on the Board of Directors for both the Whole Planet Foundation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association. He serves as Chairman of the Board for the Whole Kids Foundation.

Robb is an ardent organic advocate; he works his own organic garden and has served on the Board of Directors of the Organic Trade Association and the Organic Center for Education and Promotion.

He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University in 1976 and is a proud father and grandfather with two sons, a daughter, and four grandchildren.

Patrick Terry
P. Terry's Burger Stand
Patrick Terry, Founder, P. Terry's Burger Stand

Patrick Terry along with his wife, Kathy founded P. Terry's Burger Stand in July of 2005 at the corner of Lamar and Barton Springs in Austin, TX.   As the first restaurant in Austin to offer all-natural beef and chicken along with fresh cut french fries, P. Terry's quickly established itself as an alternative to regular fast food fare.  Today there are nine P. Terry's locations with four more planned in 2015, all in the Austin area.  

A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Patrick began his career in advertising at Tracy-Locke/BBDO in Dallas where he worked on the accounts of Philips Petroleum, Ben Hogan Golf and Frito-Lay.  Patrick came back to Austin in 1985 as the Director of the Texas Sesquicentennial  Commission where he oversaw Texas' 150th birthday in 1986. Before opening P. Terry's he created Rizano's Italian restaurant with two locations which he sold in 1993.

Patrick is married to Kathy, they have two children, Kate and Caroline.

Michael Hsu
Principal Architect
Michael Hsu Office of Architecture
Michael Hsu, Principal Architect, Michael Hsu Office of Architecture

Michael Hsu Office of Architecture, formerly Michael Hsu Design Office, was formed in 2005 with the goal of producing locally-engaged, design driven architecture and interiors in Austin.  Hsu's work has yielded head-turning structures for beloved brands such as Amy's Ice Creams, Uchi and Uchiko, P. Terry's Burger Stand and the ZACH Theater, leading to a 2013 ABJ cover story that deemed Hsu as the designer of Austin 2.0.

Alejandro Ruelas
CMO and Managing Partner
Alejandro Ruelas, CMO and Managing Partner, LatinWorks

Alejandro Ruelas has been an important player in the world of multicultural marketing for the last two decades. His track record as a thought leader in the space dates back to his days as head of ethnic marketing at Anheuser-Busch; a record that has continued through his role as co-founder of advertising agency LatinWorks.

Terry J. Lundgren
Chairman, & Chief Executive Officer
Macy's, Inc.
Terry J. Lundgren, Chairman, & Chief Executive Officer, Macy's, Inc.

Terry Lundgren became chairman and CEO of Macy's in January 2004 after having served as president and chief merchandising officer since 1997. Lundgren began his retailing career in 1975 as a trainee with Bullock's, a Los Angeles-based division of Federated. He held positions of increasing responsibility over the next decade and ultimately joined Neiman Marcus in Dallas, where he served briefly as executive vice president and shortly thereafter was named chairman and CEO. Lundgren led Federated's acquisition of The May Department Stores Co. in August 2005 to double the size of the company. Today, Macy's Inc. is a premier national omnichannel retailer with more than 840 stores in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Guam and Puerto Rico.

Ingrid Vanderveldt
Empowering a Billion Women by 2020 (EBW2020)
Ingrid Vanderveldt, Founder, Empowering a Billion Women by 2020 (EBW2020)

Ingrid Vanderveldt is the founder and chairman of Empowering a Billion Women by 2020, Vanderveldt Global Investments and Ingrid Vanderveldt LLC. She is on a mission to empower a billion female entrepreneurs and just announced the first big step: $100 million in credit available to women. From 2011 to 2014, Vanderveldt was the Entrepreneur-in-Residence for Dell Inc. and she created and hosted CNBC's original primetime series "American Made."

Joseph Kopser
CEO and Co-Founder
Joseph Kopser, CEO and Co-Founder, RideScout

Since the app launched in 2013, RideScout is in over 69 cities in the U.S. and Canada. It earned the 2014 U.S. DOT Data Innovation Award and Kopser was recognized as a White House Champion of Change. RideScout was acquired in 2014 by a subsidiary of Daimler AG, the maker of Mercedes-Benz. Prior to RideScout, Kopser served in the Army for 20 years earning the Combat Action Badge, Army Ranger Tab and Bronze Star.

Laura Roberts
CEO and Co-Founder
Pantheon Enterprises
Laura Roberts, CEO & Co-Founder, Pantheon Enterprises

Laura Roberts is the co-founder and CEO of the dynamic chemical company Pantheon Enterprises. Dubbed "The Toxic Avenger" by Forbes Magazine, she formed Pantheon Enterprises with a fierce commitment to shattering the myth that green technologies were less effective and more expensive. Before being steered into the business world after her father died, she was an elementary school teacher and staunch critic of business and capitalism.

Joel Trammell
Chief Executive Officer
Joel Trammell, Chief Executive Officer, Khorus

Serial entrepreneur and author Joel Trammell is a successful CEO and entrepreneur with a 20-year career in IT-related software companies, most notably NetQoS. He is currently CEO of Khorus, which provides a business management system for CEOs, executives, managers, and individual employees. He is also chair emeritus of the Austin Technology Council and co-founder and managing partner of private equity firm Lone Rock Technology Group. Joel also serves on the boards of several nonprofits and public and private companies.

Dr. Richard Garriott de Cayeux
Co-Founder and CEO
Dr. Richard Garriott de Cayeux, Co-Founder and CEO, Portalarium

Dr. Richard Garriott de Cayeux is an icon in the online gaming field, having created iconic computer games such as Ultima for more than 35 years. His visit to the International Space Station as a private astronaut and his recent proposal to fight Austin traffic with a "Personal Rapid Transit" system continue to make headlines.

Richard Anderson
Delta Air Line
Richard Anderson, CEO, Delta Air Line

Richard H. Anderson, became Chief Executive Officer of Delta Air Lines on Sept. 1, 2007 after serving as a member of the Board of Directors since April 2007. Anderson has over 20 years of aviation experience. He entered the industry in 1987 at Continental Airlines, where he ultimately served as staff vice president and deputy general counsel. In 1990, Anderson began a 14-year career at Northwest Airlines where he served as vice president and deputy general counsel; senior vice president of Technical Operations and Airport Affairs; executive vice president and chief operating officer; and from 2001 to 2004, as chief executive officer.


Kendra Scott
Founder and CEO
Kendra Scott Jewelry
Kendra Scott, Founder and CEO of Kendra Scott Jewelry

In 2002, Kendra Scott combined her love for fashion with her creative talent and began her own line of jewelry out of the spare bedroom of her home. Her initial investment in the company was a mere $500, but combined with her design talent, passionate determination and fearless selling skills, Kendra Scott Design Inc. has become a multimillion dollar company sold to retailers around the globe such as Neiman Marcus and Nordstrom as well as her own stores in Austin, Beverly Hills, Dallas, Houston Scottsdale and with many more to come.

Chad Dickerson
Chad Dickerson, CEO of Etsy

Chad is CEO of Etsy, an online marketplace for unique goods. Under Chad's direction, Etsy raised $40MM in May 2012 in order to accelerate growth internationally and expand offerings to Etsy's community of independent, creative businesses. Etsy also became a Certified B Corporation™, publicly committing to grading ourselves for the long term based on employee, community and environmental interests. Prior to becoming CEO in July 2011, Chad was CTO of Etsy.
From 2005-2008, Chad led Yahoo!'s Brickhouse and Advanced Products team, and the Yahoo! Developer Network. Notably, Chad created the Yahoo! Hack Day initiative, the first internal innovation program for engineers and developers of its kind. The Hack Day concept has been adopted by organizations ranging from small startups to governments to large public companies.
Before he joined Yahoo!, Chad held various positions at media outlets including InfoWorld Media Group, Salon.com, CNN, CNN/Sports Illustrated, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and The News & Observer (Raleigh, NC). Through mostly self-taught web technology expertise, Chad was an early advocate for the power of the Internet as a disruptive platform for information delivery. Chad holds a BA in English literature from Duke University.

Leon Chen & Tiffany Taylor Chen
Tiff's Treats
Leon Chen & Tiffany Taylor Chen, Co-Founders, Tiff's Treats

Leon and Tiffany started Tiff's Treats in 1999 as sophomores at UT, out of Leon's college apartment. They took the business full time upon graduating in 2001 and have remained the  the CEO and COO, respectively, since that time. The company currently has 13 retail locations throughout Texas with two more under construction and employs over 250 people on staff. The pair were married in 2010 in Austin, Texas and currently reside in North Austin.

Doug Guller
Founder and CEO
ATX Brand
Doug Guller, Founder and CEO of ATX Brands

While Doug is perhaps most famous for Bikinis Sports Bar & Grill, Austinites also enjoy The Parish, The Parish Underground, The Historic Scoot Inn, Pelons Tex Mex, 609 Trinity, 508: Tequila Bar, Chicago House, and The Zorro Food Truck as well as the Austin Santa Pub Crawl and Operation Turkey. Doug Guller grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio and attended Villanova University. After visiting Austin in 2005, he knew it was his next home. Seven years later, Doug Guller has made an indelible mark on the Austin restaurant, bar, and live music scene.

Rod Favaron
CEO of Spredfast

Sam Decker
CEO of Mass Relevance
Rod Favaron, CEO of Spredfast
Sam Decker, CEO of Mass Relevance

On the heels of their head-turning merger, Mass Relevance CEO Sam Decker and Spredfast CEO Rod Favaron — both tech veterans who came up at industry giants — will discuss how and why they brought their two Austin-based companies together. Mass Relevance develops front-end social media campaigns and Spredfast develops the back-end products to measure the effectiveness of social media.

Alan S. Knitowski
Chairman & CEO
Phunware, Inc.
Alan S. Knitowski, Chairman & CEO, Phunware, Inc.

Alan runs the fastest-growing company on the ABJ's 2013 Fast 50 list and one that sits on Forbes' list of the most promising companies in America. His company is on the cusp of the mobile revolution. Alan is a successful serial entrepreneur with multiple exits over a 15-year period to companies including Cisco Systems, Level 3 Communications and Internet Security Systems (now IBM). He is a 2014 Finalist for the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Award for Central Texas and has been a founder, executive, angel investor and fund manager throughout his career in the private sector after serving in the United States Army as an Airborne, Air Assault and Ranger qualified Captain in the Corps of Engineer.

Steve Leveen
Chairman &

Steve Leveen, Chairman & Co-Founder, Levenger

Steve Leveen is the chairman and co-founder of Levenger, a consumer products company whose overarching purpose is to create meaningful products for professionals. Levenger was founded in 1987. Come hear Steve's story in a compelling interview with ABJ Editor Colin Pope.

Hugh Forrest
Director, South by Southwest Interactive Festival

Hugh Forrest, Director, South by Southwest Interactive Festival

Hugh Forrest serves as the Director of the annual South by Southwest Interactive Festival. Scheduled March 13-17, 2015 in Austin, this event brings together more than 30,000 digital creatives from across the United States and around the world. These digital creatives are inspired by five days of panels, presentations, brainstorming, networking, deal-making, socializing, creating, innovating, and fun. Forrest was named "Austinite of the Year" in February 2012 by the Austin Chamber of Commerce (along with fellow SXSW Directors Roland Swenson, Louis Black and Nick Barbaro). In addition to his work at SXSW, he is part of the National Advisory Board for the Poynter Institute in St. Petersberg, Florida.

Forrest majored in English at Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio. Before joining the SXSW team, he founded a small alternative publication called The Austin Challenger and wrote for several other newspapers.

Chris Loughlin
Chief Executive Officer, Travelzoo, Inc.

Chris Loughlin, Chief Executive Officer, Travelzoo, Inc.

Chris Loughlin is CEO of New York City-based Travelzoo Inc., a publicly traded global Internet media company that delivers travel, entertainment and other local deals to an audience of 26 million subscribers as well as mobile app users and social media followers. The Travelzoo brand operates in 11 countries and the company now has more than 425 employees worldwide.

Since Loughlin was appointed Travelzoo CEO in July 2010, the company's annualized revenue has grown 55 percent and annualized operating income has more than tripled.

He joined Travelzoo in 2001 as vice president of marketing and moved on to subsequent executive roles, overseeing the launch of the Travelzoo brand in the UK, Germany, France and Spain before becoming CEO. In 2009, he was named the 2009 Young Entrepreneur of the Year by the British Travel & Hospitality Industry Hall of Fame.
Loughlin has an MBA from Columbia University Graduate School of Business. He lives in Austin with his wife and two daughters.

Chuck Gordon
Co-founder and CEO, SpareFoot

Chuck Gordon, Co-founder and CEO, SpareFoot

Chuck Gordon is co-founder and CEO of Austin-based SpareFoot, which helps people find and book self-storage units. He holds a bachelor's degree in fine arts from UCLA, where he specialized in ceramic sculpture. SpareFoot originated as Chuck's cheap alternative to traditional storage while he studied abroad in Singapore during his junior year at UCLA. Chuck co-founded SpareFoot with Mario Feghali in 2008; a year later, they moved the company to Austin to join Capital Factory. Since its inception, SpareFoot has collected $26 million in venture capital. As of mid-September 2014, SpareFoot employed more than 180 people in downtown Austin.

Tony Hsieh

Tony Hsieh, CEO, Zappos

In 1999, at the age of 24, Tony Hsieh (pronounced Shay) sold LinkExchange, the company he co-founded, to Microsoft for $265 million. He then joined Zappos as an advisor and investor, and eventually became CEO, where he helped Zappos grow from almost no sales to over $1 billion in gross merchandise sales annually, while simultaneously making Fortune Magazine's annual "Best Companies to Work For" list. In November 2009, Zappos was acquired by Amazon.com in a deal valued at $1.2 billion.

Doug Levy

Chuck Gordon, Co-founder and CEO, SpareFoot

Doug Levy is an author and CEO of digital marketing agency MEplusYOU. His agency serves some of the world's most beloved brands, including Procter & Gamble, The Coca-Cola Company, Pizza Hut, Louisville Slugger, Wells Fargo and more, and Doug serves as chairman of the Conscious Capitalism board.

John Mackey
Co-Founder and
Whole Foods
John Mackey, Co-Founder and Co-CEO of Whole Foods

Opening one of the first supermarket-style natural foods stores in the country turned out well for this environmentally and socially conscious entrepreneur. He parlayed a $10,000 loan from his father into a well-respected chain that has more than 350 stores around the globe. Last year, Whole Foods reported a revenue of $11.7 billion.

Amy Simmons
Amy's Ice Creams
Amy Simmons, owner of Amy's Ice Creams

Amy Simmons is the owner of Amy's Ice Creams. Described by the Austin Chronicle as a "quintessentially Austin institution" which "dominates the local ice cream scene." Amy will share her secrets to success and how she keeps Austin weird on the corporate side.

Liz lambert
Chief Creative Officer
Liz Lambert, Chief Creative Officer, Bunkhouse

Liz Lambert is not your typical hotelier, and it's not only because her background includes prosecuting street crime in the Manhattan District Attorney's office. What makes her perspective unique to the industry is how she learned the business. She bought the Hotel San Jose 15 years ago with little more than guts and a vision. When Liz settled down on South Congress it was not the trendy shopping and dining district it is today. At best, it was run-down; at worst dangerous. Over the years, Liz built a hotel both unique to Austin and uniquely Austin. Praised in feature articles in national magazines and coffee table books, the renovated San Jose became a not-quite-overnight success. Since then, she has amassed a budding empire of novel holdings, including the popular Jo's Coffee and Hotel Saint Cecilia in Austin and amazing getaways elsewhere, such as the Hotel Havana on San Antonio's Riverwalk.

Gary Keller
Co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Keller Williams Realty
Gary Keller, Co-founder and Chairman of the Board of Keller Williams Realty

Professionally, Gary Keller's ONE Thing is teaching. He excelled as a real estate salesperson by teaching clients how to make great home buying-and-selling decisions. As a real estate sales manager, he recruited agents through training and helped them build their careers the same way. As cofounder and chairman of the board, he built Keller Williams Realty International from a single office in Austin, Texas, to the one of the largest real estate companies in North America by using his skills as teacher, trainer, and coach. Gary defines leadership as "teaching people how to think the way they need to think so they can do what they need to do when they need to do it, so they can get what they want when they want it."

Martha Stewart
Founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia
Martha Stewart, founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia

Martha Stewart, founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and Emmy Award-winning television show host, entrepreneur and bestselling author, is America's most trusted lifestyle expert and teacher. Millions of people rely on Martha Stewart as a source of useful "how-to" information for all aspects of everyday living - cooking, entertaining, gardening, home renovating, collecting, organizing, crafting, holidays, healthy living and pets. Her namesake company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, which she founded in 1996, reaches approximately 66 million consumers across all media platforms each month with an expansive portfolio that includes television and video programming, award-winning magazines, bestselling books, innovative websites and apps. The Company also has a growing retail presence with 8,500 products in thousands of retail locations, including the Martha Stewart Living line of home-improvement products at The Home Depot, the Martha Stewart Collection of home products at Macy's, the Martha Stewart Home Office line with Avery at Staples, Martha Stewart Pets products at PetSmart, Martha Stewart Crafts at Michaels and Jo-Ann Fabric & Craft Stores, Martha Stewart Clean with Hain, among others. MSLO entered into a strategic alliance with J.C. Penney Company, Inc., and will launch products in jcp stores in Spring 2013.

Hector Ruiz
Former CEO of AMD and founder of Advanced Nanotechnology Solutions

Hector Ruiz, former CEO of AMD and founder of Advanced Nanotechnology Solutions

Dr. Hector de Jesus Ruiz is a founder of Advanced Nanotechnology Solutions Inc. and serves as the company's chairman. A luminary in the field of technology for nearly three decades, he is an accomplished engineer, corporate strategist and chief executive perhaps best known for his leadership at AMD. Listen to him tell the story of rising through the ranks of Texas Instruments, Motorola and AMD before starting his own venture.

Gordon B. Logan
Founder and CEO of SportClips Haircuts

Gordon B. Logan, founder and CEO of SportClips Haircuts

Gordon Logan started capitalizing on the huge potential, and relative lack of competition, in the men's and boys' haircut market in 1993 after owning and operating salons throughout Texas. Since that first SportClips opened, more than 1,000 others have followed, and Logan's Georgetown-based company is lauded as one of the nation's best franchises. Hear how this former Aircraft Commander and retired CPA revolutionized the salon business and why he's regarded as one of the country's top franchising minds.

Gary Hoover
Founder of Bookstop, Hoovers Inc. and Bigwig Games

Gary Hoover, Founder of Bookstop, Hoovers Inc. and Bigwig Games

Gary Hoover is known for doing big things. At 30, he created pioneering book superstore Bookstop, which was sold to Barnes & Noble for $41.5 million when it was 7 years old. Gary then started Hoover's Inc., which became the world's largest Internet-based directory of businesses. It went public and then was bought by Dun & Bradstreet for $117 million. Since then, Gary has embarked on other entrepreneurial adventures and devotes much of his time to teaching aspiring entrepreneurs.

Cotter Cunningham
Founder, President, and CEO of RetailMeNot, Inc.

Cotter Cunningham, Founder, President, and CEO, RetailMeNot, Inc.

Cotter Cunningham is the founder, president and CEO of RetailMeNot Inc., the world's largest online coupon and deals marketplace — and a company that just went public. Founded in 2009, RetailMeNot has 330 employees with offices in the U.S., United Kingdom, Germany, France and the Netherlands. Prior to RetailMeNot, Cotter was the COO of Bankrate Inc. for seven years, taking the company public and growing its revenue eight-fold. He wrote the book Your Financial Action Plan: 12 Simple Steps to Achieve Money Success. He has an MBA from Vanderbilt University and lives in Austin, Texas.

Gay Gaddis
CEO and Founder, T3

Gay Gaddis, CEO and Founder, T3

Gay Gaddis is CEO and founder of T3 (The Think Tank). She started her company in 1989 with a $16,000 cashed-in IRA and two employees. Today, T3 is the largest independent advertising agency owned by a woman in the country. As a collaborative think tank, T3 works with clients including Allstate, Coca-Cola, JPMorgan Chase, UPS, 7-Eleven, H-E-B and Windows Phone.

Gay speaks around the world — and on Forbes.com — on marketing issues, innovation and entrepreneurship. She was named as one of Fast Company's "Top 25 Women Business Builders," and Inc. magazine's "Top 10 Entrepreneurs of the Year". In 2011, Gay won the Austin Business Journal's Best CEO Award for a medium-sized company.

Dan Graham
Founder and CEO,

Dan Graham, Founder and CEO of BuildASign.com

Dan Graham is the founder and CEO of BuildASign.com. This native Austinite has spent the past seven years bootstrapping the Internet-savvy sign builder into one with operations in four countries, more than 220 employees and $40 million in revenue. Due to Dan's big heart for philanthropy, BuildASign.com has contributed more than $600,000 worth of in-kind donations to over 500 nonprofits, plus it has provided $8.5 million worth of free signs to families of military veterans.


Dr. James Truchard
Co-Founder & CEO of National Instruments

Dr. James Truchard, Co-Founder & CEO of National Instruments

James Truchard cofounded National Instruments in 1976 and has pioneered the way scientists and engineers solve the world's grand engineering challenges.

As one of Forbes' America's Favorite Bosses, Truchard has led the company as president and CEO from a three-man team to a multinational organization recognized as a Fortune 100 Best Places to Work and one of the top 25 World's Best Multinational Workplaces"by the Great Places to Work Institute.

Under Truchard's leadership, the company's long-term vision, known as the 100 year plan, and focus on improving the world by providing tools that accelerate productivity, innovation and discovery, has led to strong, consistent company growth and success of its broad base of customers, employees, suppliers and shareholders.

Truchard's personal passion for gardening and photography has led him to writing a gardening book that he plans on giving to nonprofits so they can use it as a fundraising tool.


Roy Spence
Co-Founder and Chairman,
Roy Spence is Co-Founder and Chairman of GSD&M, a national and leading marketing communications and advertising company.

He is also now Co-Founder and CEO of The Purpose Institute, a consulting firm whose purpose is to help people and organizations discover and live their purpose. Along with Haley Rushing, Roy co-authored the Wall Street Journal bestselling book, It's Not What You Sell, It's What You Stand For: Why Every Extraordinary Business is Driven by Purpose.
Under Roy's leadership, his agency has helped grow some of the world's most successful brands like "Don't Mess with Texas", Southwest Airlines, Wal-Mart, DreamWorks, the PGA TOUR, BMW, the U.S. Air Force, LLBean and the Clinton Global Initiative. Roy has been a trusted advisor to legendary leaders including Sam Walton and Southwest Airlines founder, Herb Kelleher. His council has also been sought by U.S. presidents and leaders in the State Department and Department of Defense.
Roy has been named Ad Man of the Year and Idea Man of the Century.

Roy has been married 33 years and has three children--Courtney, Ashley and Shay. He is a member of the board of directors of the Conscious Capitalism Institute, the Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation and is a Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Texas.

And finally, Roy's passion is entrepreneurship. He deeply believes that entrepreneurship is the Miracle of America. His mantra is "Don't Do Mild" in work or life; follow your dreams, follow your passion and follow your purpose.

Kip Tindell
Chairman & CEO,
The Container Store
Kip Tindell has been at the helm of The Container Store since it first opened its doors in Dallas in 1978 - creating the first ever store devoted solely to storage and organization products. The company has locations from coast to coast, a thriving Web site and 2011 fiscal year sales projected to approach $650 million. But for Tindell, the goal never has been growth for growth's sake. Rather, it's to adhere to a fundamental set of corporate values centered around an employee-first culture, strict merchandising and superior customer service. Success has been the natural and inevitable result. Tindell continues to embody the unique corporate culture he created, and has nurtured a fierce employee loyalty that has landed the company on FORTUNE magazine's list of "100 Best Companies to Work For" 13 years in a row.

Tindell is actively involved in the community dedicating time and resources to the Salesmanship Club of Dallas and Dallas' Save the Cathedral campaign. Tindell also serves on the board of Whole Foods Market (WFMI), the National Retail Federation's executive board and chairs the National Retail Federation's Foundation. He is a leader and passionately involved in Conscious Capitalism, Inc., a community of like-minded business, thought and academic leaders working to facilitate knowledge sharing and networking, in service of advancing the broader Conscious Capitalism Movement.

David Gardner
Co-founder & Chief Rule Breaker,
The Motley Fool
One of the country's most respected and trusted sources on investing, David Gardner co-founded The Motley Fool with his brother, Tom, in 1993. As Chief Rule Breaker, David wears many hats including innovator, stock picker, author, lecturer, and media personality. David graduated as a Morehead Scholar from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1988, and wrote for Louis Rukeyser's Wall Street newsletter before starting The Motley Fool. He has received the University's prestigious "Distinguished Young Alumni Award." Since 1999, David has been a member of the NYSE's Individual Investors Advisory Committee. Since 2004, David has served on the Board of Governors of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C. Among his many accomplishments at The Motley Fool, David is perhaps most proud of his conception and development of Motley Fool CAPS.

Clayton Christopher
Co-Founder & CEO,
Deep Eddy Vodka
Clayton Christopher, the founder and former CEO of Sweet Leaf Tea, is busier than ever with his new venture: Deep Eddy Vodka.

Clayton took a $10,000 investment when he was 25 and turned it into Sweet Leaf, which was bought by Nestle last year for a hefty sum. He went a long way from brewing his tea with Wal-Mart pillow cases in 50-gallon crawfish pots.

Now the dynamic entrepreneur and avid sailor is making waves in the liquor industry with Deep Eddy Vodka, another company becoming the epitome of Austin business.

Come hear Clayton's inspiring and amazing stories of entrepreneurship and get to know him like never before at April's Face 2 Face event.

Brett Hurt
Founder, CEO & President,
Brett Hurt is a serial Internet entrepreneur at the helm of one of America's fastest-growing companies: Bazaarvoice.

As the founder, CEO and president, Brett took this dynamic Web startup public this year after it grew to power customer reviews on thousands of retailers' websites - 50 billion user-generated reviews and counting.

Brett's commitment to the ultimate corporate culture makes Bazaarvoice a perennial winner of the Best Places to Work contest, and he's not shy about sharing the ingredients to his secret sauce.

Tim League
Founder & CEO,
The Alamo Drafthouse
The Alamo Drafthouse Cinema was recently named "the best theater ever" by Time Magazine, and the chain is growing coast-to-coast. Hear founder and CEO Tim League share his exciting story of leaving the oil fields at a young age to turn a love for movies into a career. It was a long, sometimes ugly road that put him on a path to success. In addition to the theaters, Alamo Drafthouse is emerging as a mini-movie empire and has spawned Drafthouse Films, Fantastic Fest, BadassDigest.com, Rolling Roadshow Tour and a collectible art boutique called Mondo.

Jose A. Zaglul
EARTH University
Jose A. Zaglul is the president of EARTH University, an international nonprofit in Costa Rica that trains people to be civic and entrepreneurial leaders. Since EARTH opened in 1990, it has reached out to the poor in rural communities throughout Latin America. Zaglul and his team offers them an education, instills values, and spurs entrepreneurial thinking with a strong social and environmental focus so they can return to their countries and communities as agents of change.

Brian Sharples
Co-founder & CEO,
Sharples co-founded HomeAway with Carl Shepherd in February 2005. Since then, he has raised nearly $405 million in private funding and acquired 17 websites, to create the world's leading online marketplace of vacation rentals.

Sharples is the former president and chief executive officer of IntelliQuest Information Group, a supplier of marketing data and research to Fortune 500 technology companies. While there, he pioneered the development of subscription-based statistical research services and electronic survey systems. He also completed two successful public offerings and the subsequent sale of Intelliquest.

An expert in technology brand strategy, Sharples has counseled several leading companies, including Apple, Microsoft and Dell. He also created the IntelliQuest Brand Tech Forum Conference, which became an industry-leading symposium, and served as a consultant at Bain & Company early in his career.

He earned a bachelor's degree in math and economics from Colby College and a master's degree from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Sharples serves on the Board of Directors for KAYAK, WhaleShark Media, Austin Habitat for Humanity and KLRU.

Matt Chasen
Founder & CEO,
As CEO, Matt leads uShip's executive team in the company's mission to create the most efficient marketplace for shipping that has ever existed.

The idea for uShip was hatched in 2002 when Matt moved from Seattle to Austin in a half-full rented moving truck and has since grown into a global online transport marketplace. In 2010, Matt was a finalist for Ernst and Young's Entrepreneur of the Year in Central Texas, and in 2011 earned top honors in the Austin Under40 business and entrepreneur category. Prior to founding uShip, Matt spent five years in business development and engineering roles at The Boeing Company in Seattle, Wash. He helped assess the technical and financial viability of new ventures including broadband in-flight Internet access and a theater ballistic missile defense system. Matt also led the avionics integration effort for the F-22 fighter aircraft and evaluated research proposals for NASA.

Matt attended the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin where he earned his MBA in May 2004. During business school, while turning the uShip idea into reality, Matt interned for the Austin office of Hunt Ventures where he evaluated new investment proposals. In addition to his MBA, Matt has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin. uShip is currently in their second season of filming A&E's Shipping Wars which airs Tuesdays at 9/8c.

Bert Jacobs
Co-Founder & Chief Executive Optimist,
The Life is good Company
Bert Jacobs is co-founder and Chief Executive Optimist of The Life is good Co. in Boston. This private business spreads positive vibes through its colorful collection of apparel and accessories and through its social mission to help kids overcome poverty, violence and illness. In 1994, with just $78 in the bank, Bert and his brother John officially launched Life is good. Today, Life is good products are sold by over 4,500 retailers nationwide - proving that "optimism can take you anywhere." Bert has appeared on CNN's Tips from the Top, CNBC's Business Nation, and The Donny Deutsch Show. Life is good has been featured on ABC News Nightline, NBC's The Today Show, in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Inc Magazine, and Body + Soul, among others.

John Paul DeJoria
Paul Mitchell Systems and Patron tequila
John Paul DeJoria's rags-to-riches tale is one of the most inspiring in America. This Austinite parlayed a $700 startup, Paul Mitchell Systems, into a $900 million-a-year hair care heavyweight that has put him on Forbes magazine's list of global billionaires. He is an instrumental backer of exciting ventures such as the Circuit of Americas F1 track and Patron tequila, a brand he co-founded 20 years ago that created the "ultra-premium" market for what was once seen as a bottom-shelf spirit. A devoted father and husband, DeJoria devotes his time and resources to several noble efforts, including the landmine-ridding UK nonprofit MINESEEKER.

Walter Robb
Whole Foods
Walter Robb, Co-CEO, joined Whole Foods Market in 1991 operating the Mill Valley, CA store until he became president of the Northern Pacific Region in 1993 where he grew the region from two to 17 stores. He became Executive Vice-President of Operations in 2000, Chief Operating Officer in 2001 and Co-President in 2004. In 2010, Robb was named Co-CEO along with John Mackey and joined the Whole Foods Market Board of Directors at that time. An avid organic advocate, Robb is on the Advisory Board for the Organic Center for Education and Promotion. He is also on the Board of Regents for the University of the Pacific. Robb is on the Board of Directors for both the Whole Planet Foundation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association. He serves as Chairman of the Board for the Whole Kids Foundation.