On March 6th, PeopleFund welcomes BuildASign Co-Founder & CEO, Dan Graham to share his journey of forming a company that is empowering expression around the world. Build-a-Sign employs more than 200 and made more than $42 million last year.
As always, lunch is included with the cost of registration. Join us as we learn from one of our community’s most successful entrepreneurs and participate in Q&A.
- When: Thursday, March 6th
- Where: Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Village
- When: 11:30am
- Cost: $15 (includes food and beverage)
Dan Graham oversees the growth strategy of BuildASign.com and plays a key role in the company’s philanthropic efforts and talent acquisition. Dan co-founded BuildASign.com in March 2005 and has since bootstrapped the company to great success. Dan is a winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2013 Central Texas award. He is also a recipient of the Austin Business Journal’s 2012 Best CEO Award, and was named 2012 Austinite of the Year and the Business and Entrepreneurship category winner by Austin Under 40, recognizing his success as a business owner as well as his commitment to philanthropic work. As a native Austinite, Dan personally gives back to the Austin community through participation on the Board of Directors for numerous philanthropic organizations in Austin including United Way for Greater Austin, Caritas of Austin, Citizen Generation and the Austin Chamber of Commerce among several others. He also acts as a mentor to aspiring young entrepreneurs, working with Capital Factory, Incubation Station and The University of Texas at Austin’s 1 Semester Startup. Dan earned undergraduate degrees in computer science and philosophy from The University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from The University of Texas at Austin School of Law.
Past PeopleTalk Speaker Series Leaders – Tim League of Alamo Drafthouse
In 1995, Tim League and his wife Karrie loaded a truck with 200 seats, a projector, screen and speakers and headed to Austin, Texas to start the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, where he remains as CEO today. League also co-founded Fantastic Fest, the largest genre film festival in the United States; and Drafthouse Films, a distribution label which released the critically acclaimed Jihadi-comedy Four Lions in 2010.
When asked about his motivation in opening a movie theater in the first place, “What we set out to do in the very beginning was to make a movie theater by fans for fans. And we got into the business because we love movies and we got a little frustrated with our options as to what the movie theater experience was all about”.
Past PeopleTalk Speaker Series Leaders – Roy Spence and Judy Trabulsi of GSD&M
In 2012, PeopleFund welcomed Roy Spence and Judy Trabulsi of GSD&M and The Purpose Institute to discuss how they formed their own business and the impact of the new presidential administration on small businesses in our community. As chairman of GSD&M, Roy continues to inspire the folks at the agency. In 2008 he and Haley Rushing coauthored 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 in 2010 he launched his hot sauce line.
Under Roy’s leadership, GSD&M has helped grow some of the world’s most successful brands like Southwest Airlines, Walmart, DreamWorks, the PGA TOUR, BMW, the U.S. Air Force, Hallmark and the Clinton Global Initiative. Roy has been a trusted adviser 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
and the Department of Defense. Roy has been married 32 years and has three children. 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.
Past PeopleTalk Speakers:
- John Paul DeJoria, entrepreneur, philanthropist and renaissance thinker. Founder of Paul Mitchell Systems and the Grow Appalachia Project.
- Evan Smith, former editor of Texas Monthly Magazine and founder and editor of The Texas Tribune.
- Dr. Mohammed Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank and an internationally renowned leader in micro-lending
- Dr. Manuel Pastor, a nationally recognized expert on equitable community development
- Jeremy Nowak, CEO of The Reinvestment Fund in Philadelphia, a leading organization for revitalizing low-income areas in the Northeastern United States
- Dr. Angela Blackwell, Founder and CEO of PolicyLink and a leading expert on race relations and equitable development
- Professor john a. powell, Executive Director of The Kirwan Institute of the Study of Race and Ethnicity
- Cecilia Estolano, Cities Strategist for Green for All. Click here for a transcript of her presentation.