The REDI Speaker Series seeks to bring voices from outside Columbia who operate at a high level to push our ecosystem forward. Special thanks to Hawthorn Bank for its support of the Series and Missouri Cures for arranging our speaker, Maxine Clark.
About Maxine Clark:
Maxine Clark is the Founder of Build-A-Bear Workshop®, a teddy-bear themed retail-entertainment experience. Founded in 1997 in St. Louis, MO., today there are over 400 Build-A-Bear Workshop stores worldwide, more than 150 million stuffed animals have been sold world-wide and global revenues have exceeded $5 billion. Maxine stepped down from her CEO position in 2013 to dedicate her time to investing in women and minority entrepreneurs and to use her entrepreneurial skills to help reinvent K-12 education in St. Louis. Launched in 2015, is her first product, Blueprint4SummerSTL, a free and easy-to-use mobile app designed to help ALL families navigate the best summer activities for their children. Her latest venture is the Delmar DivINe™—the transformation of a neighborhood eyesore, the historic St. Luke’s Hospital, into a multi-use real estate development to open in 2019.
Maxine is a Founding Managing Director of Prosper Women’s Capital, a St. Louis based accelerator for women led businesses and the Board of Advisors of Lewis and Clark Ventures. Maxine is a member of the Build-A-Bear Workshop, and Footlocker, Inc Boards of Directors. Maxine is also a member of the Parents As Teachers and PBS national boards. In 2017 Maxine was named to the Missouri Public Affairs Hall of Fame and in 2015 was named Women of the Year by the Greater Missouri Leadership Foundation.
Maxine is a graduate of the University of Georgia, and holds an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree from St. Louis University and an Honorary Doctor in Human Letters from the University of Missouri St. Louis. In 2006, she published her first book “The Bear Necessities of Business: Building a Company with Heart.”