Mark Willis, CEO of Forerunner Companies and Ex-CEO of Keller Williams Realty International
Westlake resident, Mark Willis is a conscious business leader, investor, speaker, author and lifestyle activist.
As former CEO of Keller Williams Realty International, Willis is one of the most highly respected and admired industry leaders in real estate. During his tenure, Keller Williams grew from a regional company with 700 agents in Texas to over 150,000 agents worldwide. It was under Willis’ leadership that KW became the largest real estate company in North America. Additionally, Willis owned 3 franchises, and according to RealTrends, those offices were collectively the top producing in the country, selling more than 3 billion dollars in real estate transactions a year with more than 2000 agents. When Willis retired in 2015,
he was named the number 8 most influential person in real estate by Swanepol Trend Report.
Willis now focuses his time as the CEO and Managing Director of ForeRunner Companies; portfolio of real estate, consumer product companies and experiential retail investments. Included in the portfolio is BRAIN JUICE, an all-natural
cognitive stimulant energy drink and brain booster supplement. Also, Good Society which is an experiential retail and lifestyle hub based in Austin that integrates personal fitness, yoga, mastery classes, events, and a networking lounge. Additionally, Mark conducts Conscience Business Coaching for business leaders globally. Later this year, Willis is set to launch the MARK WILLIS FOUNDATION, a charitable organization dedicated to eradicating homelessness.
Gay Gaddis, CEO and Founder of T3—The Think Tank
In 1989, Gay started her company after cashing in a $16,000 IRA. Today,
T3 has offices nationwide and creates innovative digital marketing programs for Fortune 200 clients. T3 is a top ranked innovation firm and one of the largest agencies owned by a woman. Gay has been nationally recognized for the unique family-friendly policies she has initiated at T3.
Gay serves on the Board of Directors of Monotype Imaging Holdings, Inc.
(NASDAQ: TYPE), sits on the Dean’s Advisory Council to The University of Texas McCombs School of Business, is the first female Chairman of the Texas Business Leadership Council and is former Chairman of The Committee of 200 (C200),
a top women’s business organization that advances women’s leadership in
business. She and her husband own the historic Double Heart Ranch in the Texas Hill Country.
An active spokesperson, writer and artist, Gay is a regular contributor to Forbes and part of Fortune's Most Powerful Women Insider Network. She has received numerous awards and honors including Fast Company’s “Top 25 Women Business Builders,” Inc. Magazine’s “Top 10 Entrepreneurs of the Year” and C200’s Luminary Award for Entrepreneurial Excellence. Her bold Texas landscape paintings have hung in New York City gallery shows and earned her distinction by Texas Monthly magazine as one of the top ten artists to collect now.
Mike Haggerty, Co-Owner of Thundercloud Subs
Mike was a ThunderCloud Subs customer in 1977 when he met the founders at the original ThunderCloud Subs on Lavaca St. near campus.
Mike opened the first franchise on Lake Austin Blvd. in 1981 (They stopped franchising in 1999).
Born in Dallas, Mike attended Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, a community college in Illinois while working in the Chicago area, and received his bachelors in business at the University of Texas.
Mike’s role at ThunderCloud includes spreading the ThunderCloud brand and culture outside of the central Austin area and developing systems that ensures that they maintain their quality, personality, and service. Their office owns and operates 15 locations: 12 in the Austin area, two in San Antonio, one in New Braunfels, and one in Georgetown.
Mike and his wife of 37 years, Jeanie, have two sons and two daughters—all are involved with Thundercloud. Jeanie does thorough in-store reviews of all the shops every month (They call her “The Inspector General.”). His two sons, Ben and Jack, work part time in ThunderCloud shops. Jack also designs their specials posters. Rachel is instrumental in managing the Turkey Trot, and Ellie also helps with the Turkey Trot. His favorite activities include sailing, golf, and being with my family and friends.
Ben De Leon, President of De Leon Washburn & Ward, P.C.
Born and raised in Austin, Ben first joined the firm as a law clerk in April 2004, and
was eventually named President in 2012. He practices in the areas of real estate,
construction, administrative an d business law. Ben is fluent in Spanish, and
has represented numerous clients pro bono through Volunteer Legal Services of Central Texas since 2005.
In 2010, Ben was elected as a Fellow to the Texas Bar Foundation, one of the highest honors that can be bestowed upon a member of the State Bar of Texas. He has also been selected as a “Texas Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine every year since 2011. He served as a Big Brother in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program of Central Texas for nearly 7 years, and was named the 2009 National Big Brother of the Year out of more than 250,000 mentors nationwide.
Ben was named an Outstanding Young Texas Ex in 2012 by UT Ex-Students’ Association, and received the Austin Under 40 Award in the Youth & Education Category in 2011. He currently serves as Secretary on the Communities In Schools of Central Texas Board of Directors, President on the Board of Directors of A Legacy of Giving, and is a Member of the Texas Law School Alumni Association Executive Committee. Ben is married to Shannon De Leon; they are the proud parents of daughters, Anna and Winnie, and son, Henry – all of whom attend Forest Trail Elementary School.
Moderator, Kent Hutchison of CJBaxter Group
C.J. Baxter Group is an employee development firm specializing in front line leadership, team building, customer service, sales, and communication topics.
Founded in 2003 by Kent Hutchison, their team of consultants works with thousands of business leaders globally to improve their respective organizations.
They also offer customized employee development programs, assist with strategic planning, facilitate trainings and speakers.
Westlake Community Luncheons
Occur Quarterly at Austin Country Club.
The remaining luncheons for 2018:
Friday, May 11
Friday, August 24
Friday, November 9
*Advanced reservations are required.
The Community Luncheons are a formal plated lunch featuring a speaker, panel discussion, workshop, or presentation. It is a way to bring the community and Chamber members together while educating and informing everyone on topics pertaining to the Westlake
area. Members and non-members are welcome to attend, but advance reservations are required.
Sponsor a Community Luncheon
So that your business will get maximum recognition, we are limiting this opportunity to only 1 Sponsor per luncheon.
- Your flyer or postcard at each place setting on the tables
- Opportunity to speak at podium
- Business logo will be included in all pre and post-luncheon promotion
- Logo recognition on powerpoint
To sponsor a luncheon, contact the Chamber office at 512.327.3088 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Area Info