Longtime entrepreneur William Pickard featured speaker at Wayne State University, Nov. 10

William Pickard, longtime successful entrepreneur, will talk about his experiences as a major franchise owner, investor in media operations and gaming industry ventures, and the challenges he has faced during his 40-year career.

The fireside chat, sponsored by Innovation Warriors (formerly Blackstone LaunchPad), Wayne State’s School of Social Work and Mike Ilitch School of Business, will be held from 4-6 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 10, at Wayne State University’s Midtown TV Studio, located in the Maccabees Building, 5057 Woodward, on the first floor.

Tickets are free but seating is limited and reservations are required. RSVP through EventBrite now! 

A former School of Social Work faculty and Board of Visitors member, Pickard is not a stranger to the normal pitfalls of business startup, as well as the major setbacks. His entrepreneurial journey has taken him through four decades of challenging activities. He established Global Automotive Alliance as a parent to several suppliers that manufacture plastic parts for the automotive industry. He has owned McDonald’s franchises; participated as an investor in Real Times Media; owned the Michigan Chronicle; and was an investor in the MGM Grand Detroit.

He also has faced notable challenges that African American entrepreneurs have experienced in the past. 

Pickard’s humble beginnings influenced his strategies for success which he outlines in his instructional and personal journey in his upcoming book, “Seven Principles of Entrepreneurship.”

“The Seven Principles of Entrepreneurship are not only a testimony of my life lessons, but also a testament of life learnings,” said Pickard. “The valuable lessons I’ve learned throughout my career have formed the tapestry of my life and I look forward to sharing these teachings.”

The fireside chat, which is part of the speakers’ series titled Humble Beginnings, will be moderated by a staff member and student of Wayne State’s entrepreneurial hub, Innovation Warriors.

This Humble Beginnings also falls within a local initiative called Black Business Infrastructure, focusing on having the important and sometimes uncomfortable conversations about uncovering the issues black businesses face and finding the solutions as a collective. 

For more information, contact Aubrey Agee at 313-577-1533. Register to attend online

Innovation Warriors

Innovation Warriors (formerly Blackstone LaunchPad) is Wayne State’s entrepreneurship hub. We encourage and support students, alumni, faculty, staff and our community at every stage of their entrepreneurial journey. Innovation Warriors is funded by Wayne State University, the New Economy Initiative (NEI) and the Blackstone Charitable Foundation. To learn more, visit innovationwarriors.wayne.edu

Wayne State University School of Social Work

The School of Social Work at Wayne State University is a premier institute of research and practitioner preparation, offering training at the bachelor’s, master’s, and Ph.D.-level, graduate certificates, dual-title degrees and continuing education. Currently nearly 900 students are studying social work at Wayne State University, either on campus, at extension centers, or online, and more than 9,000 social work graduates are working across the United States and internationally to improve the human condition. To learn more, visit socialwork.wayne.edu.

Wayne State University the Mike Ilitch School of Business

The Wayne State University Mike Ilitch School of Business prepares students for challenging and rewarding careers, advances the boundaries of scholarly and practitioner knowledge, and enhances the economic vitality of the city of Detroit, the state of Michigan and beyond through its programs, research and community engagement. Established in 1946, the business school was renamed in 2015 in recognition of a $40 million gift from Mike and Marian Ilitch. Thanks to this lead investment, a new state-of-the-art building is slated to open in the heart of the District Detroit in 2018, and entrepreneurial programming and collaboration with city businesses are expanding. For more information, visit ilitchbusiness.wayne.edu