In 1996, e-commerce pioneer Danielle took a chance and moved her small chain of retail sunglass stores online. It was a tipping point that helped Thralow Inc. grow into an internet powerhouse, holding over 30 niche retail sites that became the global leaders in their categories. Thralow Inc. earned Inc. 500® status as one of the nation’s fastest-growing companies three times, was an Entrepreneur Hot 100® two times, and was awarded the Minnesota Tekne for technology leadership in 2004. By the time Thralow sold the company in 2006, it had become the world’s largest retailer in many of its niche categories. Not bad for someone who used to hawk RayBans out of a mall kiosk.
Danielle spends most of the year in Florida. Escaping the snowy weather of her native northland and getting the most possible use out of her prized peepers. Danielle enjoys running, chess, spending time with her children and speaking to groups about entrepreneurship.
Marketer / Mahout
Raised on a farm in Central Minnesota, Jon Thralow learned the value of hard work and honesty early. After finishing his degree in engineering, he joined his brother’s business, putting his knowledge of technology and statistics to work as director of marketing and technology for Thralow Inc.
Jon was responsible for building and marketing the family of websites that propelled Thralow Inc. to the top of the technological revolution. Their track record of website stability was the buzz of the open source community, and strategic, statistics-based marketing got Thralow Inc. to a combined sales volume of $30,000,000 per year before the company was sold in 2006.
Jon lives in rural Wisconsin, and loves getting outside and enjoying all the benefits of country living with his wife and four children.
Project Manager / Rockstar
A life-long musician, Aaron began his journey in audio production while in college. Since then, he has since amassed a variety of skills in nearly every area of media production. Working with everyone from writers, to actors, to post production, he enjoys the full process of bringing an idea to life. As skilled educator, author, and communicator of over 20 years, Aaron measures his success in making an essential message simple, accessible, and effective for any audience.
Aaron lives in Wisconsin with his wife, Jenny, and their four boys. In his spare time he enjoys songwriting, comedy writing, and being active in their community.
Writer / Coffee Connoisseur
Jenny Armstrong is a professional writer who has written for a wide variety of national, regional and online publications, including P31 Woman, Radiant, and the Utne Award-winning Geez Magazine. Her combination of business experience, copywriting know-how and actual saleable writing skills make her a stand-out in an industry dominated by marketers trying to write, and writers trying to market. She uses the principles of neurolinguistics and sales psychology to create compelling promotional copy, without sacrificing the quality of the text.
Jenny lives in Wisconsin with her husband and four little boys, trying to stay warm and ward off carpal tunnel. She loves reading, consuming fair trade chocolate, and squeezing in writing assignments for her favorite magazines—preferably all at the same time.
Web Developer / Code Monkey
Derek is a 33 year old web software developer and programmer, who also dabbles with graphic design, 3D modeling/animation, user interfaces and more. He has been building online backend applications and various other online solutions for nearly 15 years. During these years, he has been involved in countless projects, which range from small websites to multi-million dollar enterprise applications.