David M. Howitt ’90

B.A., Denison University
J.D., Lewis and Clark College

Chief Executive Officer and President
The Meriwether Group Inc.
Portland, Ore.

Citation awarded May, 2015

David M. Howitt, founder & CEO of Meriwether Group, is an inspiring thought leader and guiding mentor in the world of commerce. He is an accomplished entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience providing business strategy and brand counsel to startups and Fortune 100 companies.

Through a unique brand ethos and delivery system, he and Meriwether Group provide strategic vision and support to entrepreneurs, and provide funding for the next wave of innovative consumer-oriented companies.

His ability to foster the growth of iconic consumer brands started with him leveraging a law degree to serve as Corporate Counsel for adidas. During a nine-year tenure, he practiced the essential merging of right-brain principles with left-brain practicality, a methodology he calls Intuitive Analytics™. It is through whole-brain activation that he has achieved profound success in personal and professional endeavors. Intuitive Analytics™ and whole-brain consulting are key guiding principles of Meriwether Group’s ethos, principles David believes are essential to driving and actualizing success.

An innovator at heart and with the ability to intuit what the consumer wants, in 1994 David supported his wife, Heather, in the launch of the iconic and recognizably successful tea-based product, Oregon Chai. Together, they grew sales of their home crafted brew from $20,000 to $200,000 within their first year of business. Within just six short years, the brand had spread to 40 countries and across five continents and in 2004, Heather and David sold the company to Kelly Foods.

Following the sale of Oregon Chai, David founded Meriwether Group, a boutique private equity, business accelerator and advisory firm that supports some of the most recognizable consumer brands in the world. As CEO, he and the firm are committed to transforming the way in which human values are expressed through business. They support universal shifts in commerce by helping disruptive consumer brands and founders to “Fulfill their Journey.”

He has provided financial expertise, operational guidance and strategic vision to a wide range of companies including Oregon Chai, Stumptown Coffee, Pendleton, adidas, Voodoo Doughnut, Salomon, yogitoes, Klim, Bloch, Dave’s Killer Bread, ABC Carpet & Home, Living Harvest, and many others.

David earned his B.A. from Denison University and J.D. from Lewis & Clark Law School. He is an inspiring keynote speaker and the author of Heed Your Call––Integrating Myth, Science, Spirituality, and Business.