Chairman, Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention
As co-founder of Gateway, Inc., Ted Waitt helped revolutionize how people use technology to live, work and play through pioneering the direct marketing of personal computers. Labeled a maverick by national business publications, he has since gone on to form multiple enterprises: Avalon Capital Group, Inc., a wholly-owned, billion-dollar private investment company with diverse interests; the Waitt Foundation; and, the Waitt Institutes. Through the Waitt Foundation, Ted has become one of America’s 50 most generous philanthropists, according to Business Week. Established in 1993, the Foundation initially focused on community development in “at-risk” communities. After investing millions of dollars in various programs in multiple communities, Ted concluded that the Foundation’s work in domestic violence had the most measurable impact on those at risk today. The creation of the Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention and the Waitt Institute in 2005 has allowed the Foundation to broaden its program interests. Today, in addition to funding the two institutes, the Foundation funds a variety of environmental and scientific programs with an emerging focus on ocean exploration, conservation and rejuvenation. Ted has served as the Chairman of the Founding Fathers campaign of the Family Violence Prevention Fund. He also serves on the Board of Trustees and the Council of Advisors of the National Geographic Society and as vice chairman of the Salk Institute for Biological Studies, in La Jolla, Calif. Born January 18, 1963 in Sioux City, Iowa, Ted is the son of a fourth generation cattleman. He attended the Universities of Colorado and Iowa from 1981 to 1984. After a nine-month stint working in the PC industry in Des Moines Iowa, he and Mike Hammond co-founded Gateway in 1985 on the Waitt family farm. With a $10,000 loan secured by Ted’s grandmother’s CD, they grew Gateway from “2 guys in a barn” to become a Fortune 500 company. Over the years, Ted has earned a number of prestigious honors, among them: the Young Entrepreneur of the Year award from the U.S. Small Business Association, two Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards, Marketing Computers Marketer of the Year, and a Ten Outstanding Young Americans (TOYA) award from the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce. He was appointed by Congress to serve on the Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce, and he received an Honorary Doctor of Science from the University of South Dakota.
Executive Director, Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention
Cindy Waitt serves as Director of the Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention, a board member of the Waitt Foundation, and the Kind World Foundation. Prior to her 20 year career in philanthropy, she worked with at risk youth and their families for 10 years. Cindy serves on the National Advisory Board for the Future’s without Violence International Center to End Violence, has been a member of the Clinton Global Initiative since 2006, and served as a judge in the Ashoka Changemaker’s 2007 competition “No Private Matter”. Under her leadership, WIVP has been a lead supporter of the strategy of engaging men and boys in violence prevention through her support of Futures without Violence’s awareness and on ground campaign, “Coaching Boys into Men” and Jackson Katz’s “Mentors in Violence Prevention” . She sponsored a five year violence prevention in- school and community research project called the “Sioux City Project” and co sponsored the first workplace bullying Zogby poll in America in 2007.
She is an Executive Producer, with Gloria Steinem and others, of the HBO documentary “Private Violence,and is the Executive Producer of the award winning documentary “Bully”.Cindy has been directly involved in three national Ad Council Campaigns from 2002-2006 and is a co sponsor, with AOL, Facebook, and Marlo Thomas’s “Free to Be” foundation, of a new 2012 Ad Council anti bullying national campaign.
Alan Heisterkamp, Ed.D
Education Consultant and Researcher
Alan Heisterkamp, Ed.D., president and CEO of Cultivating Minds, Inc. has served as an education consultant and researcher with the Waitt Institute for Violence Prevention since 2007. He is also the director of the Center for Violence Prevention at the University of Northern Iowa. Dr. Heisterkamp worked on a four-year study (Sioux City Project) of local secondary students’ attitudes and behaviors toward violence and bullying. He has presented to over 10,000 students, adults, and community organizations on gender violence prevention strategies and has trained over 500 high school student leaders in the Mentors in Violence Prevention Strategies (MVP), founded by Jackson Katz and Northeastern University in Boston, MA. Dr. Heisterkamp served the Sioux City Community School District as a secondary mathematics teacher, athletic coach, school counselor, and school administrator for 22 years. He holds a masters degree and an advanced studies certificate in educational psychology and counseling, and secondary school administration, respectively. In 2002, Heisterkamp earned his doctorate degree in secondary education administration from the University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD. He resides with his family in Sioux City, Iowa