Kieran and Sherri Murray want their fellow Pierce County residents to be inspired to make improvements, be it to their business, family or community. So they created something to provide space for that inspiration to occur. They are the founders of Ignite-U, a series of events that combine motivational speakers and networking opportunities.
About 350 attended the last event in Lakewood in August. One speaker was Chris Caillier, who became inspired by a speaker at an Ignite-U event in March. It led him to fly to Africa, where he spent several months meeting with families in need and raising funds to assist them.
The Murrays own a marketing company. Sherri said they both closely observed the recession and the impact it had, causing many businesses to shut down. That made them ponder how many were victims of the economy or fizzled out due to other factors, such as a death in the family, a divorce or a dispute with a business partner.
The couple has traveled to seminars in the past 10 years, where they have been inspired by a variety of speakers. “We wanted to bring those speakers up here to the Northwest to give people here the same exposure we had,” Sherri said. The goal is for attendees to “be ignited” by what they hear.
The next event is the Ignite-U Business Expo on Sept. 13 at Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma. This is the fifth event in 2012. Sheri said each event has a different nature, so those who attend will all get a different experience each time.
This next event will differ in that it will not have speakers. It will be more about mingling and networking, according to Sheri Murray. There will be $6,000 worth of appetizers and Harmon Brewery will bring a special Ignite-U brew. The event is free to the public to attend, as are all in the series, which is funded by sponsors, she noted. This event is meant to showcase the sponsors.
Sherri Murray said people who attend the events include business owners to human resources professionals as well as people who may be looking for work who want to interact with such people. “They are open to anyone. We want people to have fun, move forward and think bigger.”
The expo event will feature music by Johnny Cash tribute band Folsom Prism.