Due to my Instagram post in June, I have had a lot of people ask me what exactly Entrepeneur of the Year is and what it is all about. With that being said, I am going to give you a little background history. Andy and I moved to Texas from Provo Utah in August 2009 just after graduating from college. At that time, Andy started working for a company called TWG, selling insurance. We moved to Texas with two other couples that we met through the company and grew to love dearly. Andy was excited for his first opportunity in the world of having a career and I was excited for the adventure of moving to Texas. In December, I started work as a nanny and was 12 weeks pregnant with our first son. We both enjoyed our jobs and loved the experiences we were having in Texas. At that time, neither of us had any idea how long we would end up staying in Texas and to be honest, I really would not of thought it would have been this long. When we were moving into our first apartment, we had a guy from our church help us move in. His name was Jeremy, he lived in the apartments across the way from us and we liked him right away. We learned about his family and knew that we would become fast friends. As we got to know Jeremy and his wife better, we learned of a company that Jeremy and his partner Robby had just recently started, as the story always goes, they had started out of a garage. At the time we met, they were barely starting up and were sacrificing much of their time and energy to get this company going. Jeremy would talk to Andy about the company and was slowly planting the idea in him to come on board. I saw the sacrifices that Lindsay was going through as the wife of an entrepreneur, and wasn’t sure that was my cup of tea. Well, a year later in August 2010, Andy and I decided to buy in and join the company as a partner. I was very hesitant at the time since we just had our first baby and were no longer going to have insurance and we took a pay cut. Andy continually told me that he felt good about Clarus and really thought it would blossom. Andy joined the Clarus team which consisted of Jeremy, Robby, and Riley who was running production. Well to make a long story short, they went from four employees to one hundred in four years and continued to have amazing growth every year. The guys put in hours upon hours of work and really reaped the benefits. With that being said, it has never been easy for me as the wife and Mother to never have a husband/father at home and to have to tell my kids OVER and OVER again that they will see daddy on the weekend or maybe a glimpse of him in the morning. It has also been a large sacrifice for me, but I am PROUD of Andy and all of Clarus for their hard work. He has been a major contribution to Clarus and has put his heart and soul into that company.
In early 2014, the company had started to look into some investors and additional partners so they could continue to grow the business at such a rapid rate. During this time Jeremy and Robby took more of an advisory role with the business and Andy took on the heavy role of being the President. Taking on this role, he with the rest of the amazing people there (some of which are our dear friends) continue to put hours in and effort into making the company successful. Andy often tells me of the talented people he works with and how grateful he is to them for their hard work and dedication to Clarus. In March 2015, Clarus received a large investment from a private equity firm called Bertram Capital. Andy’s role is still the same and continues to put much effort into this company that he has helped grow.
Now back to Entrepeneur of the Year. In the spring of 2015 Jeremy, Robby and Andy were nominated for Ernst and Young’s Entrepeneur of the Year. On June 27th 2015, we had a gala event in Dallas where we were to find out if they were winners in their category. The event was hosted by Ernst and Young and they hold the event every year. There were 51 individual finalists, including Glenn Beck as one of them and American Airlines CEO Doug Parker as another. They were all in different categories. The finalists were chosen by a panel of independent judges, some of which were former winners, CEO’s, Presidents, Co-founders and Leading Chief executive officers. If they were to win that night, they would go on to compete for EY’s national awards which would be held in California.
Given the talent that was there that night, Andy made me to believe they most likely didn’t have a chance at this thing. I don’t know if that was him being modest or if he really believed that.
Now the events of that day and night, It was a pretty fancy event and required a lot of getting ready for. I woke up that morning, which was the morning after my birthday and we were at the Gaylord Texan. We packed up and left. We got some lunch and Andy dropped me off to meet a friend at Nordstrom where we got our makeup done. I have to spend a moment on this part. Now I’m not sure if this happens to other people, but for some reason every time I get my makeup done, I somehow end up looking like a dare I say “entertainer” of sorts. They CAKE the friggin stuff on. My eyes are always loaded with eyeliner and I have dark eyes as it is. Somehow I come out looking like i’m about to perform on broadway (and not a classy broadway), while my friend who got her makeup done next to me looks elegant and ready for a gala.
I wasn’t exactly happy with the look I was given, but with the amount of time I had, I couldn’t do much about it. It took forever for my makeup and by the time I got home to do my hair, my time was out. So I ended up with hair I wasn’t planning on either. Oh well, it happens. The night was still very enjoyable. We started the night off with pictures, then we went into a beautifully decorated room where we would eat dinner and watch the planned program.
I forgot to take a picture of the actual dinner and all of our Clarus Glassboards peeps sitting around the table. There were a couple of speakers at the beginning one of which was Glenn Beck.
That was neat to hear him speak. He also received an award for Entrepreneur of the Year. When the speakers were finished, the program was divided into different categories in which they would select a winner in each category. When it came time for our category, I got a little nervous for some reason although many people we had met there were making it sound like they really thought our guys had a big chance. They put the three of them up on the screen and explained their company and showed a video clip about Clarus.
then it came time to announce. When they called their names, at first I was thrown off, but I couldn’t be more proud then I was at that moment.
All of their hard work, sacrifices, hours after hours of being at the office, had now been recognized. It was a fun moment to be a part of and I am grateful that I got to be there.
Now that they won here in Dallas, they will be going to California in a couple of weeks to compete for EOY’s national awards. There the guys will get to attend a few days of classes and then that weekend the wives will join them and go to a concert put on by One Republic ( I LOVE them) and then it will end with the Gala hosted by Seth Meyers on Sat. Should be a good time. If you’re interested in finding out exactly what Clarus Glassboards is all about, this is their website. http://www.clarusglassboards.com/