The Art of Creating Renaissance

The Art of Creating Renaissance

This Tuesday’s discussion will be the “The Art of Creating Renaissance” and features Paul Grangaard, the Chairman and CEO of Faribault Woolen Mill Co. and former CEO of Allen Edmonds, two roles he assumed after leaving senior leadership roles in financial services. Paul’s leadership has transformed these iconic businesses, which are also the cornerstones of their home communities. His leadership ensured that those families dependent on the success of these enterprises could continue to be engaged and employed in the craft they love in a sustainable way.

Meet the Faculty

Presented by Tom Schreier

Tom Schreier ’84

Founding Director, Inspired Leadership Initiative

Tom Schreier ’84 oversees the Inspired Leadership Initiative as its founding director where since 2016, he has had the privilege of working with the leadership, faculty and staff of Our Lady’s University to develop a distinctive program for accomplished leaders who have completed their traditional careers and are looking to pivot to become an even greater force for good.

Currently, Tom serves as chairman of the Allina Health Board, a Director of Piper, Sandler Companies, and also serves as a trustee of the Minneapolis Institute of Art. He is a member of the Applied Investment Management Advisory Board for the University of Notre Dame and a founding investor in Granite Global Ventures. While in the investment industry, Tom was a long-standing member of the Board of Governors of the Investment Company Institute (ICI) and served on its Chairman’s Council. Additionally, Tom is the former chairman of the Saint Thomas Academy Board of Trustees and continues to serve on its Finance and Investment Committees.

Introducing Paul Grangaard, Chairman and CEO of Faribault Woolen Mill Co.

Presented by Tom Schreier

Tom Schreier, Founding Director of the Inspired Leadership Initiative, provides an introduction to this weeks’ topic and conversation with Paul Grangaard, Chairman and CEO of Faribault Woolen Mill Co. 

Paul Grangaard

Presented by Tom Schreier

Chairman and CEO, Faribault Woolen Mill Co.

Paul Grangaard is the Chairman and CEO of Faribault Woolen Mill Co., which was founded in 1865 and is Minnesota’s oldest manufacturing company. Paul and his co-founder merged their start-up men’s apparel developer, retailer, and content provider — CircleRockLLC — into FWMC in February 2020 and began a renaissance of the 155 year old brand. Creating and sustaining American jobs through Made in USA production is a key commitment in the combined company’s strategy.

Prior to CircleRock, Paul served as President & CEO of Allen Edmonds Corporation from September 2008 through August 2017. He led a major turnaround and subsequent rapid growth phase at the company — returning AE to significant profitability by nearly tripling revenues. During Paul’s tenure, the company was sold twice, once in 2013 to a second private equity owner and again in 2016 to Caleres, Inc., a leading NYSE-traded shoe company.

Prior to Allen Edmonds, Paul spent three years as a partner at Goldner Hawn Private Equity and 19 years at Piper Jaffray Incorporated — first in consumer investment banking, then as Head of Investment Banking, and lastly as a Management Committee Member and President of Private Client Services. He began his career at The First National Bank of Chicago, starting in its Chicago headquarters and then in its branch in Frankfurt, Germany. Active in the community, Paul has served as Chair and a Life Director of the Minnesota Orchestra Board of Directors, on the Board of Family & Children’s Services of Minneapolis, on the Board of the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, and two elected terms on the Edina Board of Education. He is a member of the Andersen Corporation board of directors and chairs its finance committee. Andersen, a private company, is the nation’s leading manufacturer of residential windows and doors. Paul is also currently a Regent of St. Olaf College.

While at Allen Edmonds, Paul was twice a finalist for the Milwaukee Business Journal’s CEO of the Year Award and was named Milwaukee BizTimes’ CEO of the Year in 2013. In 2012, he was a regional winner of Ernst&Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award.  

Paul graduated from Stanford University in 1980, where he received a B.A. with Distinction in Economics, and he received an M.B.A. in Finance and International Business from the University of Chicago, Graduate School of Business, in 1983. He was elected to the Phi Beta Kappa and Beta Gamma Sigma honor societies in college and business school, respectively. Paul and his wife of 38 years, Margot, met in college and have four adult children. 

View the Event

Presented by Tom Schreier

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Featured Speakers: 

  • Tom Schreier, Co-Founding Director, Inspired Leadership Initiative
  • Paul Grangaard, Chairman and CEO, Faribault Woolen Mill Co.

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