No star ever rose or set without influence somewhere. -Lord Lytton
What would America be without the influence of business magnate John D. Rockefeller; or Henry Ford, pioneer of the mass-market automobile; or J. P. Morgan, a father of modern finance? What would Utah be without the legacies of Jon Huntsman, Larry Miller, James Levoy Sorenson or Ray Noorda? This month, Utah Business honors these and other influential Utahns. We consulted a community panel to determine a list of entrepreneurs, non-profit leaders, artists, politicians, university presidents and others who are working to create a robust economy and a better quality of life for Utah. Some of their impacts are direct and tangible (company revenues, people employed, economic impact or capital deployed), while others are less direct (positive impact on quality of life, improvement of the business environment or facilitation of business).
Alan Ashton, co-founder, Word Perfect; founder, Thanksgiving Point
Ashton invests in many companies and has donated money to develop Thanksgiving Point, a place dedicated to education and the renewal of mind and spirit.
Gary L. Crocker, president, Crocker Ventures; chairman & CEO, AnzenBio
Crocker has played key roles in four of Utah’s largest health care operations including Theratech, Inc. and ARUP Laboratories. He has helped create thousands of jobs and negotiate company transactions with cumulative market value of about $1 billion. He was a Utah Entreprenuer of the year in 1999.
Other dream job: Teaching wind surfing on the north shore of Kauai
Best advice ever received: “Never fight a fair fight, have a strategic advantage in any business you invest in.”
Spence Eccles, philanthropist
Eccles is an entrepreneur and leading philanthropist. The Eccles estate began when Eccles’ grandfather David pioneered more than 30 businesses. Eventually the estate was divided and the fortune held in various charitable foundations and trusts.
Robert H. Garff, CEO & chairman, Garff Enterprises, Inc.
Ken Garff Automotive Group grew substantially in 2003: $700 million in sales, 22,000 vehicles sold, more than 360 jobs added. He is an advocate of education and is serving on the State House of Representatives.
Other dream job: cattle rancher
First car: 1953 Oldsmobile Super 88 Rocket
Robert Earl Holding, Sinclair Oil, Little and Grand America Hotels
Holding created a fortune in oil, hotels and real estate. He is known as a leading philanthropist and a ski benefactor, spending millions of dollars for on-mountain improvements in Sun Valley, Idaho, and Snowbasin near Ogden.
Jon Huntsman, founder, Huntsman Chemical Corp. and the Huntsman Cancer Institute
Huntsman has become one of the state’s most successful entrepreneurs. His donations are legendary and are highlighted by the recent opening of the Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah.
Larry H. Miller, owner, Larry H. Miller Group
As owner of the Utah Jazz, multiple automobile dealerships, and many other ventures, Miller is one of Utah’s most-recognized businessman and has created a huge influx of jobs and commerce to the state.
Ray Noorda, founder, Canopy Group
As a former CEO of Novell, Noorda led the company’s growth to its evolution as a leading global computer networking company. During his storied career, he developed and inspired a host of technology and industry leaders in Utah.
Robert Redford, owner, Sundance
Redford and the Sundance name have generated worldwide interest in Utah. The annual Sundance Film Festival is one of Utah’s biggest claims to fame. Redford has also actively lobbied to help protect Utah wilderness and gave 860 acres as a conservation easement to Utah Open Lands.
Blake Roney, founder, NuSkin
Blake Roney built one of the world’s leading direct selling companies, operating in 38 countries with 5,000 employees. Revenue will exceed $1.1 billion in 2004. Its $250 million IPO in 1996 was Utah’s largest to date.
Other dream job: A rodeo clown or a photographer
Best advice ever received: Love and serve others to be happy.
First car: Datsun Pickup
James Lee Sorenson, vice-chairman, Sorenson Development, Inc.
Sorenson is a nationally recognized business leader, entrepreneur and philanthropist. His numerous companies and achievements deal in such diverse arenas as real estate, healthcare and environmental testing.
James LeVoy Sorenson, chairman, Sorenson Development, Inc.
Sorenson is a world-renowned inventor and developer of medical devices. His innovations, such as the disposable catheter, are commonplace in operating rooms around the world. He is also a champion of genomics research.
Entrepreneurs & Extraordinary Execs
Kirk A. Benson, chairman & CEO, Headwaters Incorporated
Benson helped build an environmentally-responsible company with revenues in excess of $500 million. Two of Headwaters companies include Headwaters Energy Services and Headwaters Resources, America’s largest manager and provider of coal combustion products.
Rodney H. Brady, president & CEO, Deseret Management Corporation
The holding company oversees a portfolio of for-profit ventures for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. This includes 20 radio stations, several television stations, the Deseret Morning News, Deseret Book Company, life insurance, hotel, restaurant and property management services.
Greg Butterfield, president & CEO, Altiris
Since Butterfield became CEO of Altiris, the company growth has skyrocketed from about $3 million to $30 million. Altirus helps companies reduce costs and complexity of managing information technology.
Patrick M. Byrne, CEO, Overstock.com
Byrne has put Utah on the e-commerce map and has contributed both money and products to Utah non-profits. Worldstock.com empowers artisans in developing countries to become entrepreneurs.
Proudest accomplishment: Worldstock
A her Warren Buffett
Best advice ever received: “Don’t you never quit at nothing.” Coach Joe, my highschool wrestling coach.
Shelli Gardner, cofounder & CEO, Stampin’ Up!
Gardner’s commitment to employees has earned her company recognition as one of Utah’s top ten family-friendly companies. Stampin’ Up! was recently recognized for its contributions to its home base of Kanab. Corporate charitable giving includes more than
$1 million raised for 9/11 alone.
An influence: My grandmother Wanda Goodfellow continues to influence my actions, even though she passed away years ago.
Thomas L. Guinney, partner & director of operations, Gastronomy, Inc.
Guinney is a 25-year veteran in the food service industry and operates seven clubs and restaurants in Salt Lake City. Gastronomy is one of the most successful and well-respected food corporations in the United States.
Hunter Jackson, Ph.D., CEO, president & chairman, NPS Pharmaceuticals
Jackson is one of the most prominent in the pantheon of storied Utah scientist entrepreneurs. He has helped put Utah on the global pharmaceutical map.
Carl R. Kjeldsberg, M.D., chairman & CEO, ARUP Labs
Kjeldsberg created a company that is a leader in medical diagnostics, and has been recognized both locally and nationally as one of the best companies to work for.
Proudest Accomplishment: I climbed Mt. Everest and cycled Tour de France (before race)
Best advice received: from my father, “Every day is a gift.”
Fred Lampropoulos, founder, chairman & CEO, Merit Medical Systems, Inc.
Under Lampropoulos’ leadership, Merit Medical is regularly one of the nation’s fastest medical device companies. He is active in politics, community affairs and philanthropy.
Scott Marquardt, President of Management & Training Corporation (MTC)
Under Marquardt, MTC operates 23 Job Corps Centers and 12 correctional facilities across the country. No other public or private agency manages more centers.
Peter D. Meldrum, president, CEO & director, Myriad Genetics, Inc.
Meldrum has led Myriad Genetics to prominence in identifying disease-related genes and treatments and has brought financial resources and credibility to Utah’s Life Sciences. He was also the former president and CEO of Founders Fund, Inc.
Kent H. Murdock, president & CEO, O.C. Tanner Company
“A tireless servant to his community, Murdock’s compassion and energy have touched and inspired many.” Adrian Gostick, director of marketing, O.C. Tanner Co.
A her Mohandas K. Gandhi
A favorite book: The Last Hero, by Peter Forbath
Kelly Olsen, Tahitian Noni
Olsen is the marketing visionary that made Tahitian Noni one of the fastest growing companies in American history. In eight years the company has grown from about $6 million, on course to exceed $500 million this year.
Richard A. Parkinson, president & CEO, Associated Food Stores, Inc.
Parkinson has been the catalyst behind Associated Food Stores’ growth, including many new stores and an increase of more than $700 million in sales in 11 years.
Other dream job: To own a Harley-Davidson dealership
Tom Stockham, president & CEO, MyFamily.com, Inc.
Stockham led in the revitilization of MyFamily.com from a company whose existence was in doubt to one of the world’s most visited Internet portals.
Lane Summerhays, president, CEO & director, Workers Compensation Fund
His contributions to WCF have resulted in a 31 percent decrease in reported accidents, and an anti-fraud program that saves in excess of $6 million annually.
Myron Wentz, founder, USANA
In the 1970s, Wentz founded Gull Laboratories in Salt Lake City, where he developed. among others, the assay for the Epstein-Barr virus. He founded USANA Health Sciences, Inc. in 1992; current annual revenue is approximately $265 million.
An influence: Dr. Albert Schweitzer
Other dream job: Music Conductor
Will West, president & CEO, Control 4
West founded three technology companies in six years, creating more than 500 jobs and raising more than 10 percent of the total private equity that has come to Utah. He is chairman of the Utah Capital Investment Corporation, a mentor for young entrepreneurs at Utah’s major universities, and serves on numerous Utah boards.
Best advice ever received: From my mother: “The difference between success and failure is a little bit.” I never want to find myself on the wrong side of that little bit.
Dollars and Sense
A. Scott Anderson, president & CEO, Zions First National Bank
Anderson has been involved not only in state’s largest bank, but also as chairman of the Salt Lake Chamber and downtown revitalization projects. Under Anderson, Zions Bank employees contribute more than 50,000 hours a year to organizations throughout the state.
A her My father, Aldon S. Anderson, who was a great example of integrity, virtue, and wisdom.
Other dream job: Farmer.
A favorite historical figure: Cleopatra - from a relatively weak position, she became one of the most powerful and colorful figures in early history.
My passion: My wife Jesselie
Kim Briggs, managing director, Marsh Inc.
Briggs has been with Marsh Inc., the world’s leading risk and insurance services firm, for 14 years. He is also involved in the community and participates in many programs and boards in Utah.
Proudest accomplishment: Convincing my wife that she should marry me
A favorite book: The Endurance, Alfred Lansing
Fraser Bullock, co-founder & managing director, Sorenson Capital.
Prior to his involvement with the Sorensen Capital venture fund, Bullock was president and COO, CFO and CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the Olympic Winter Games of 2002.
Rick Craig, president & CEO, America First Credit Union.
The 65-year-old credit union has over 357,000 members and $2.8 billion in assets. It is the 13th largest credit union in assets in the United States.
Gordon R. Dames, president & CEO, Mountain America Credit Union
Mountain America is the credit union for state and local government employees. It also serves employees of Questar, AT&T, Qwest and Novell.
Scott G. Davis, president & CEO, Mountain West Small Business Finance
Formerly known as Deseret CDC, the small business lender has played a major role in strengthening Utah’s economy.
Robert A. Hatch, President & CEO, Wells Fargo Utah
Under Hatch, Wells Fargo Utah serves nearly half a million customers with more than 3,500 team members in 70 Utah communities. Wells Fargo employees have donated countless hours of volunteer service; their charitable giving totaled more than $1.4 million in 2003.
Other dream job: A plastic surgeon for Project Smile
My passion: Life.
Best advice ever received: Do not take yourself too seriously.
Howard M. Headlee, president, Utah Bankers Association
Headlee became president in 1997. Prior to his presidency, he served six years as vice president of the Utah Taxpayers Association. He has been particularly instrumental in encouraging bank employees to create one of the most powerful grassroots organizations in the state.
Other dream job: White House Chief of Staff
My passion: Public policy
Best advice ever received: Never stop taking risks.
Ed Leary, commissioner, Utah Finance Institutions
Leary helped create a legal and regulatory climate that has spurred Utah’s development as a global leader in financial services. “The FDIC has said the regulatory system for state chartered nationwide banks in Utah will become the model for all banks in the future.” George Sutton, Callister, Nebeker & Mc Cullough.
Bill Moreton, president, Fred A. Moreton & Co.
Bill Moreton is the fourth generation of the Moreton family to lead one of the largest insurance brokers in the Western United States. The business was founded in 1910 and serves clients ranging from small businesses to publicly traded corporations.
Dinesh Patel, co-founder & managing partner, vSpring Capital
Approximately 80 percent of the venture capital company’s investments have been in Utah. Patel is a national figure in the life sciences and medical devices investment world and a community activist.
Harris H. Simmons, chairman of the board, Zions Bancorporation
Zions is one of the nation’s premier financial services companies, operating more than 400 full-service banking offices in eight states. It employs approximately 2,300 people in Utah and Idaho.
Todd Stevens, managing director, Wasatch Venture Fund
Stevens oversees four venture capital funds with assets of more than $150 million. He has raised capital and invested over $500 million in private and public companies.
A favorite book: The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
Best advice ever received: Align your interests with the entrepreneur's interests.
Ralph J. Yarro, III, president & CEO, Canopy Group
Yarro runs a host of tech companies, and as CEO of Canopy Group, Yarro has invested in more than 120 national and international companies, and now focuses on Utah. Yarro used to be a graphic artist who worked on computer games.
Movers and Makers
Jerry C. Atkin, chairman, president & CEO, SkyWest, Inc.
Atkin has led SkyWest from a company with annual revenues of less than $1 million to a publicly held company with $772 million in revenue and more than 5,400 employees, all since 1975.
Tim Campbell, executive director, Salt Lake City International Airport
Campbell manages the bustling Salt Lake City International airport, which processed 18.5 million passengers in 2003 and was served by 17 scheduled airlines with 397 daily departures to 69 nonstop destinations.
A favorite historical figure: The Wright Brothers
Best Advice: “Focus on the doors that are opening, not the ones that are closing.”
Wilford W. Clyde, president, Clyde Companies, Inc.
Clyde guided the construction company from 200 employees and $18 million in sales in 1983 to more than 800 employees and $120 million in sales today.
Daniel E. England, CEO, C.R. England Trucking
England leads the second-largest refrigerated freight company in the nation, with 2,600 trucks and more than 4,000 refrigerated trailers serving the United States, Canada and Mexico.
John M. Inglish, general manager, Utah Transit Authority
Inglish has garnered international recognition for UTA. He federally funded and built three light rail projects ahead of schedule and under budget, and was key in the purchase of 175 miles of Union Pacific Railroad Corridor. In 2004 he was named American Public Transportation Association Chair of Research and Technology.
Clark Ivory, CEO, Ivory Homes
Ivory Homes has been Utah’s Number One Homebuilder for 15 consecutive years. It has completed hundreds of residential subdivisions.
Ted Jacobsen, chairman of the board, Jacobsen Construction
Jacobsen has directed both conventional and construction management projects. Projects include the Grand America Hotel, the LDS Conference Center and the Warnock Engineering Building at the University of Utah.
David Layton, president & CEO, The Layton Companies
Layton is president of the privately held corporation, which employs more than 600 people. Headquartered in Utah for more than 50 years, the company now works nationwide.
Jack Livingood, chairman of the board, Big-D Construction
Big-D has completed more than 100 million square feet of construction throughout the West. His philosophy parallels that of hockey player Wayne Gretsky: “The secret is not skating where the puck is, it’s skating to where the puck is going to be.”
William K. Martin, founder, partner, broker, Commerce CRG
Martin helps lead the state’s largest commercial brokerage firm, overseeing 85 sales agents and a 35-member support staff in offices across the state. He has been a board member on national and international real estate service firms.
Peter F. McMahon, president, Kennecott Land
McMahon moved to Utah in 2001 from Australia. At Kennecott Land he is busy creating a vision for 93,000 acres of land on Salt Lake Valley’s West Bench. It’s a vision of walkable, workable, livable communities.
John R. Njord, P.E., executive director, Utah Department of Transportation
Njord has led UDOT, an agency of 1,800 employees in charge of design, construction and maintenance of the 6,000-mile state system of roads and highways, since May of 2001. He was president of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials from 2003 to 2004.
Randy Okland, president & CEO, Okland Construction
For 17 years, Okland has overseen more than $2 billion in construction projects. He twice served as the director of the Utah Chapter of the Associated General Contractors.
Orluff Opheikens, founder & CEO, R&O Construction
Opheikens founded the company on the principals of completing jobs on time. R&O is now listed as one of the top retail contractors in the nation and has grown to more than 200 employees. Opheikens serves on boards around the state.
Kip Pitou, president & COO, Utah Ski and Snowboard Association
Pitou played a crucial role in marketing Utah skiing before, during and after the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. He serves on numerous tourism boards and committees statewide.
Keith O. Rattie, chairman, president & CEO, Questar Corp.
Rattie heads Questar, a $4 billion integrated natural gas company.
Other dream job: Co-lead guitar for Creedence Clearwater Revival
Best advice ever received: “Opportunity often comes disguised as hard work.”
First car: 1961 Chevy Brookwood station wagon—value $57.00
Carol Sapp, executive officer, Southern Utah Home Builders Association
Sapp represents more than 700 building industry businesses throughout Southern Utah. She’s working toward the goal of providing for safe, decent and affordable housing.
Nancy Conway, editor, Salt Lake Tribune
As the first woman editor in the Salt Lake Tribune's 132-year history, Conway has brought a new level of excellence to community journalism. A former high school English teacher, “Conway brings enormous energy and insight. . . with a keen understanding of public policy and community concerns, and with personal warmth.” Vern Anderson, editorial page editor.
A her Nelson Mandela
A favorite book: The Collected Poetry of Emily Dickinson
Other dream job: To raise and train horses or be an accomplished musician
My passion: fine literature, good music, beautiful countrysides
John Hughes, editor & CEO, Deseret Morning News
Hughes won the Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of Indonesia, and the Overseas Press Club award for best reporting from abroad for an investigation into narcotics traffic. He is noted for taking the Deseret Morning News to a morning publication last year.
An influence: George Shultz
A favorite book: On Writing Well by William Zinsser
Other dream job: owning a book store undisturbed by buyers
Bruce T. Reese, president & CEO, Bonneville International Corporation
Reese leads a diversified communications company that owns 35 radio stations, KSL 5 Television, Bonneville Communications and Bonneville Satellite Company.
Other dream job: Lead singer in a rock band
Best advice: Show up early, and work hard and smart
David E. Simmons, president & CEO, Simmons Media Group
Simmons Media Group owns and operates 14 radio stations across the West. Simmons Media companies have contributed millions to the communities they serve.
A her My father, Roy Simmons, who taught all his children great values while providing a strong business education from an early age.
Other dream job: History professor
Best advice ever received: Never fall in love with your merchandise.
Rocky Anderson, mayor, Salt Lake City
Mayor Anderson’s internationally recognized environmental programs have helped to improve air quality and quality of life. He encouraged the United States to intervene in the genocide in Sudan, and worked for a more effective criminal justice system.
A favorite book: A Problem From Hell: America and the Age of Genocide, Samantha Power
Other dream job: Human rights advocacy
Best advice ever received: Keep your eye on your goals and enjoy the way there.
Pamela Atkinson, Community Advocate
Volunteers of America honored Atkinson with their Outstanding Service Award, the Fourth Street Clinic named it’s Homeless Services Center after her, and the state Legislature last year renamed the Homeless Trust Account in honor of her.
An influence: The Dalai Lama
Proudest accomplishment: Helping to create a winter overflow shelter for homeless families and individuals so nobody freezes to death.
Lane Beattie, president & CEO, Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce
Beattie built a successful business before jumping into politics as a legislator and president of the Utah State Senate. He was then appointed as Utah’s Olympic representative and now serves the Salt Lake Chamber.
Other dream job: Flying an F-18
Robert F. Bennett, United States Senator
Reelected to a second term in the United States Senate in 1998, Senator Bennett is Chief Deputy Majority Whip, a member of the Senate Republican leadership team and a respected member of many Senate Committees.
Other dream job: President of CBS with full authority to fix it. My passion: crossword puzzles
Best advice ever received: “In college, the main thing you must do is learn how to think. The subject matter you learn may fade, but the ability to think will last a lifetime.”
Dianne Binger, president, Salt Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau
Under Binger’s leadership, the bureau helped keep the Outdoor Retailer Show in Salt Lake, a victory for tourism. The Salt Palace Convention Center has also announced expansion plans, and the bureau opened a satellite office in Chicago to capitalize on Midwestern growth.
Gary Esplin, city manager, St. George
Esplin helped St. George grow from 10,000 in 1976 to more than 65,000 today. “A former mayor once said, ‘St. George is built upon the shoulders of giants’” and Esplin is undoubtedly one of those giants.” Marc Mortensen, assistant city manager of St. George.
Other dream job: Golf course architect
Best advice ever received: “One of the few things in life we have total control over is our attitude.”
Jeff Gochnour, director, Division of Business and Economic Development (DCED)
The DCED is Utah’s home to programs and incentives in dealing with a wide array of businesses in industries all over the board.
Gladys Gonzales, publisher & editor, Mundo Hispano Newspaper
Gonzales is a voice for Utah’s Latino community as founder of Spanish newspaper Mundo Hispano, and the Pete Suazo Business Center, which assists other immigrants starting businesses.
Kermit L. Hall, president, Utah State University
In his first year as president Hall himself gave $10,000 for student scholarships to a fund now worth $900,000. He has broadened opportunities for women and under-represented groups. His building program for USU has so far produced $218 million.
My heroes: My mother and father, who never graduated from high school but insisted their two children had to go to college.
Dream Job: Managing the Cleveland Indians between 1992 and 1998.
My Passion: Justice tempered by pragmatism and fairness.
Dell Loy Hansen, president, Wasatch Property Management
Hansen has created numerous jobs in the state. He is active in improving Utah’s educational system and in community service, “He gets right to kernel of the problem. I’ve never seen anybody so focused in my life.” Bobbi Coray, Director, Cache Valley Chamber of Commerce.
David G. Harmer, executive director, Department of Community and Economic Development
Under Harmer’s leadership several pieces of legislation have been passed, promising to bring thousands of jobs and millions of dollars into the state. He is an accomplished businessman who understands how the state can create a vibrant economic environment.
An influence: My father, who taught me that what I lacked in ability could be overcome by hard work and persistence.
First car: Baby Blue 1941 Ford Coupe.
Orrin Hatch, United States Senator
Hatch is serving his fifth term as senator. He has championed a variety of legal causes and gained power and prominence on the national front. He is a member of many senate committees and is well respected among his national peers.
Gordon B. Hinkley, President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
President Hinkley is a tireless and compassionate leader. In 2004 he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civil award. He was also honored by the National Conference for contributions to tolerance and understanding.
Nolan Karras, chairman, State Board of Regents
As a member of the State Building Board and the committee overseeing Utah's 2002 Winter Olympics, Karras helped focus attention on the games. Karras also oversees Utah’s state colleges and universities as the chairman of the Board of Regents, and is the current gubernatorial running mate.
Richard Kendell, Utah Commissioner of Higher Education
Kendell is an associate superintendent for the State Office of Education and superintendent of the Davis School District, one of the largest in the state.
Rod Linton, director, Office of Technology and Science, State of Utah
Linton has assembled a world-class team to help represent Utah technology. A powerful speaker and versatile leader, he serves on the boards of some of the most touted companies in the state.
Other dream job: history professor
My passion: black and white photography
L. Alma Mansell, president, Utah State Senate
Mansell has been serving Utah in the Senate since 1994 and now is its leader. He is also a successful businessman, running his own real estate company and serving on boards and committees in that arena.
Stan Nakano, district director, U.S. Small Business Administration
Under Nakano, the Utah SBA has become one of the most effective economic development tools in the state, accounting for thousands of new jobs every year. Every corner of the state—urban and rural, male and female, minority and veteran—benefits.
Other dream job: To own a major sports franchise.
Best advice ever received: “Keep it simple”
Richard Nelson, President & CEO, Utah Information Technology Alliance (UITA)
Under Nelson, UITA has become the voice of Informational Technology in Utah with more than 2600 companies. He is sought by state government for input on key decisions.
My her My father, who accomplished much in his short life—surgeon, decorated fighter pilot who led a balanced life, and great father.
A favorite book: Good to Great, Jim Collins
My passion: Community building and inclusion
Deborah Bayle Nielsen, president & CEO, United Way of Salt Lake
The United Way brings people together to help those in need. The non-profit organization works with businesses and employees to garner volunteers and cash donations.
Chris Roybal, president & CEO, Economic Development Corporation of Utah
EDCU has led a public and private partnership that recruits new industry to Utah and assists in corporate expansion. The organization has a reputation among business leaders as an asset in helping companies succeed.
Cecil O. Samuelson, president, Brigham Young University
Samuelson began as the 12th president of BYU in May, 2003. He is former dean of the School of Medicine at the University of Utah and vice president of health sciences there. He was senior vice president of Intermountain Health Care prior to his calling at BYU.
Nancy Tessman, director, Salt Lake City Public Library System.
Tessman has helped build one of the most outstanding public library systems in the nation, with a circulation rate double the national average. She pushed for the new main library, which welcomed more than three million visitors in its first year—making it Utah’s second most popular destination.
A favorite book: Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Other dream job: Writer for National Geographic
My passion: ideas
Best advice ever received: Feel the fear and do it anyway
Michael Young, president, University of Utah
Young served on the U.S. Committee on International Religious Freedom and was Dean of the George Washington University Law School and Professor of Law at Columbia University for 20 years.
An influence: My grandfather, Wilbur Sowards, who ran a small store in Provo, Utah, and helped hundreds of young people get through college.
First car: A Plymouth, in which I got a speeding ticket and a reckless driving ticket my very first day—but I have since sincerely repented.
Olene S. Walker, Governor
Walker was sworn in as Utah’s first woman governor on November 5, 2003. She has led Utah toward improvements in literacy and education, and her prioritization of affordable housing led to The Olene Walker Housing Trust Fund.
Carey Wold, associate director, Government Contract Development for the State of Utah
Wold has brought $300 million existing, $100 million winning tax orders and a projected $50 million in government contracts to tribal IT businesses in the state. “Carey Wold has worked tirelessly to build sustainable communities and Indian Nations in Utah.” Irene Hansen Director of the Duchesne County Economic Development.
A her John F Kennedy
A favorite book: A History of Utah’s American Indians
My passion: Listening to people
Jim Jardine, attorney & managing director, Ray Quinney & Nebeker
Active in community affairs, past University of Utah Board of Trustees and outside general counsel for the Salt Lake Organizing Committee (SLOC), “Jardine is energetic and fair-minded. He persuades without being manipulative or combative.” John Adams, Shareholder for Ray, Quinney & Nebeker.
Other dream job: A writer for Sports Illustrated.
Best advice ever received: “Angels can fly because they take themselves lightly.”
Alan L. Sullivan, administrative partner, Snell & Wilmer LLP, Salt Lake City office
Sullivan is one of Utah’s most well-known litigation attorneys. He has won numerous awards and represented many top cases.
Annette Herman, CEO, UnitedHealthcare (SLC)
Herman is known for her persistence, patience and teamwork. With her help, UnitedHealthcare has teamed with IHC to let UHC policy holders receive healthcare from IHC hospitals and affiliates and helped Zions Bank roll out BeneFund, which makes healthcare benefits more affordable for small businesses.
A her Alan Davis, businessman and friend that died in an avalanche last year
Other dream job: To work in an African country establishing health education programs.
My passion: Rock climbing, cooking and antique clocks.
Scott Ideson, president & CEO, Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah
Ideson took over the reigns of Regence in December 2001. It is the state’s largest insurer, serving more than 400,000 members. The company processes almost 410,000 claims per month and has 857 employees.
Bill Nelson, president & CEO, IHC
“IHC is a major factor in Utah’s high rankings for excellent medical outcomes. Bill is an authentic ‘servant leader’ who leads by example and seeks to make himself and his organization useful to others.” Charles W. Sorensen, Jr., MD, executive vice president, IHC.
Other dream job: Having a small hardware store.
A favorite historical figure: Winston Churchill.
Best advice ever received: Seek understanding before acting.
Masters of the Arts
Fred C. Adams, founder & director, Utah Shakespearean Festival
Adams built one of the West’s most prized Theater Festivals, earning a Tony Award in the process. His professionalism and passion for the arts reverberates throughout the state, from theater troupes in public schools to professional acting groups. The festival brings $64 million to Cedar City annually.
Anne Ewers, general director, Utah Opera
Under Ewers' leadership, Utah Opera has expanded the budget from $1.5 million to more than $4 million in eight years, while operating deficit-free. She expanded the season from three productions to four and aided in the merger between Utah Symphony and Utah Opera.
Bonnie Hansen Stephens, Vice Chair, Museum of Utah Art & History
Bonnie played a major role in legislation for a county sales tax option to assist zoos, arts and parks, which generated $15.2 million in Sale Lake County last year.
A favorite book: Crossing to Safety, Wallace Stegner
Best Advice: "All things being equal, bet on the team with the optimistic leader."
Leigh Von Der Esch, director, Utah Film Commission
Von Der Esch has brought $1.5 billion to Utah in film production. "Leigh Von Der Esch has put Utah on the world map as one of the top choices for on-location filmmaking...this is no easy feat." Suzy Kellet.
Her My uncle, who at 87, golfs, dances five nights a week, and gives so much to his community and church.
An Influence: Gertrude Baccus, my highschool speech teacher