Mark Keillor has gained more than 30 years of practice and knowledge in community, economic, and business development. He has taken his many and varied experiences and incorporated them in to The American Pie Seminar, an intriguing, valuable, and understandable lesson in community economics. The seminar has also been recognized by the United States Patent and Trademark Office as ““A new and innovative approach to teaching economics and civics.”
For most people in most cultures, our personal financial situations are strongly connected to the economic opportunities and conditions in the places where we live. Throughout most of human history, residents, businesspersons, and entrepreneurs actively participated in building and expanding business and community growth. Economic and political changes throughout the 18th, 19th, and 20th Centuries transferred much of this engagement, power, and control to the large business and political sectors.
Keillor brings back the importance of individuals and small businesses … and their contributions to personal, family, and community wealth … by starting with an explanation and discussion of the American Dream. From there, he transitions into community and economic principles (not theories and academics) by introducing the sources of ingredients for the American Pie including the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, and individual expectations that arise from our consumer economy and constant, mass advertising.
Participants in The American Pie Seminar have been varied and diverse. The youngest have been in 6th grade, the eldest have been well past retirement age with college degrees. A majority have been minorities, the bulk of these resided in economically challenged communities. The design, format, and presentation of the seminar encourages questions, comments, participation, and individual economically responsible action at the local level.
Prior to developing this unique educational opportunity, he assisted small business and entrepreneurs as an Advisor for a Small business Development Center, a chamber of commerce director, and private consultant. His current mission is to take his experience to the public and help build economically sustainable communities filled with empowered residents. Among his areas of expertise are business planning, strategic marketing, budget development, marketing materials design, new product development and provisional patent applications, and proposal development. He has also successfully received four provisional patents for his own product creations.
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