Gary Nelson is a forward thinker whose passion, creativity, and determination make him a visionary in business. A graduate of San Jose State University with advanced work in industrial relations, Gary had ten years of experience in human resources before founding Nelson in 1970. He continually explores new ways to provide value to clients and to maintain his company’s standing as a clear leader in the workforce management and human capital industry. He believes in a personal-touch approach with both clients and job candidates and instills this practice in his businesses. His wealth of industry experience has earned him recognition as an expert. He is regularly asked to speak at human resource-related events and conferences and has shared the stage with many industry leaders and dignitaries, including Dr. Henry Kissinger, Lloyd Bentsen and Scott Cook of Intuit. In 2011, he was listed in SIReview’s Who’s Who: The Staffing 100 as an influential leader in the field of staffing. In his local community, Gary is recognized as an outspoken advocate for healthcare and education. As a community activist and philanthropist, he has spearheaded efforts to open and support public charter schools. He was a leader in developing Sonoma’s “Field of Dreams” project to create a major youth baseball and soccer complex. Additionally, Gary and his wife, Marcia, established the Gary and Marcia Nelson Emergency Care Fund in support of emergency room services in Sonoma Valley.
Amy Miller is an actress, a singer and a dancer, she is originally from Cincinnati Ohio. Her passion is in Broadway musicals and musical theater. She spent a lot of time in New York City and around the United States performing. She was in the production of 42nd Street, and did over 800 performances of that.
In 2011 Amy became a founding member of The Transcendence Theater Company. They have drawn 57,000 visitors and raised more than $187,000 for Jack London Park, but their work doesn’t stop there. They spend many hours on community projects such as workshops for grieving children and performances for the developmentally disabled and the elderly.
As Cisco’s Vice President, Worldwide Services Strategy & Innovation, Rajat Mishra is responsible for driving strategy and innovation for Cisco's $12B services business. His charter spans organic growth, acquisitions, alliances, market intelligence, ecosystem-wide idea generation, start-up incubation and horizon 2/3 emerging technology. He is also the executive sponsor for Cisco's Distinguished Services Engineer community.
Rajat's portfolio of skills includes profit-and-loss responsibility, strategy, software, analytics, consulting, and sales. He has held leadership roles at a variety of companies, including startups, global consulting firms, software companies, and Internet companies.
Prior to joining Cisco, Rajat held the position of General Manager at Mu Sigma, a Sequoia-backed data and analytics "unicorn" helping Fortune 500 organizations make data-driven decisions. He has held leadership roles at McKinsey & Company, where he was a leader in the strategy and technology practices working with senior clients across North America, Europe, and Asia. Rajat’s experience also includes leadership roles at Microsoft and Google.
Outside of Cisco, Rajat advises early-stage analytics startups and is on the board of PreZentium Inc. He is a member of UC Berkeley's Sutardja Center of Innovation and Adruta Children's Home (an Indian orphanage supporting 400+ children). He is a loving dad, voracious reader and an avid poker player.
Rajat holds an MBA degree in strategic management from Wharton, graduating with Director’s List honors, and a BSc degree in computer science and engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, where he achieved Dean’s List honors. He holds 2 patents.
Rajat has also published several articles featured in McKinsey & Company Quarterly magazine http://www.mckinsey.com/quarterly/overview
LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rajatmishrawharton
Jean-Charles Boisset was born into the world of wine in the village of Vougeot, Burgundy, France. His lifelong passion for wine began as a child, growing up above the cellars and within view of the centuries-old vineyards of Château du Clos Vougeot.
Jean-Charles leads the family firm with passionate commitment to fine wine, history, quality and a deep respect for the environment. He implemented organic and Biodynamic farming at all of the family’s estate vineyards in Burgundy and California. Together with his sister Nathalie, he created Domaine de la Vougeraie, uniting the family’s Burgundy vineyards into one of Burgundy’s leading domaines.
In 2003 Jean-Charles brought DeLoach Vineyards, a pioneering producer of Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Zinfandel in Sonoma’s Russian River Valley, into the family collection. He immediately recognized the similarities to Burgundy: each boast a confluence of river, mountains, and soil that is perfect for growing world-class Pinot Noir.
Under his vision, Raymond has become a leading producer of luxury fine wines, implemented organic and Biodynamic farming on its 100 acre Rutherford estate, and become among the most dynamic winery destinations in California, earning “Winery of the Year” honors from Wine Enthusiast magazine. In 2011, Jean-Charles’ dream of championing California wine history became a reality when Buena Vista Winery, California’s first premium winery, founded in 1857, became a part of the Boisset Collection. From this great foundation of historical, pioneering wineries in France and California, Jean-Charles’ sets forth a vision of the wine world centered on family, passion, history, innovation, a commitment to fine wines, and a dedication to sustainable winegrowing.
At the young age of 30, Sal Chavez has already launched a restaurant and a spirits distribution business and has been elected board chair of the Sonoma Valley Unified School District. In 2009, while completing his economics degree at Sonoma State University, Chavez collaborated with his parents to open Picazo Cafe, a hot spot in Sonoma Valley where business is bustling and locals frequently bump into someone they know. One customer he became friendly with was Camerino Hawing, a UCLA-educated Sonoma County architect and native of Mexico, who after seven years was resigning early from his post as a trustee on the Sonoma Valley school board. In 2012, at age 26, he took the leap and applied for what was at first an appointed position replacing Hawing. He interviewed with the board and was chosen over a man decades older, with a lifetime of experience in the business world.
We're bringing in former New York City Attorney Jay Rooke to shake up how we pursue entrepreneurship.
Jay will walk us through the main takeaways of Entrepreneurial DNA, which explores the concept that we all have different ways we're hard-wired in a business setting. By better understanding our (and others') natural tendencies and dispositions, attendees will walk away from the evening with a better understanding of their areas of giftedness as well as their blind spots. Jay will share actionable insights that innovative entrepreneurs can apply to their business or within their organization. His goal is to provide you with the tools to move from status quo to optimal performance.
Attendees are encouraged to take this brief complimentary entrepreneurial assessment, based on the BOSI methodology, which is laid out in the book Entrepreneurial DNA and announced at a prior TEDx event. Entrepreneur Magazine named Entrepreneurial DNA as one of the top 14 books to read, and Seth Godin wrote "Not all entrepreneurs are the same. Neither are all businesses...this engaging [methodology]...helps you sort it all out and find the path that's right for you." After spending a decade in corporate and launching a restaurant, Jay now serves as an Executive Coach in Sonoma, where he helps accelerate the growth of early stage entrepreneurs.
His talk will be followed by music, appetizers, and drinks to celebrate our new AWS Loft location.
When: Tuesday, 1/17, 5PM-7PM
Where: AWS Pop-up Loft: 1446 Market Street, San Francisco, CA
A tip o' the hat to you, my friend--It's been a long year! What does the entrepreneur in you want for 2017? Come celebrate what you've helped co-create this year with old friends and new. We're going to pass on a speaker this month in favor of enjoying more one-on-one time.