The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

QAD founder shares story to success

Students and entrepreneurs have the opportunity for a “fireside chat” with Pamela Lopker, a self-made woman on the Forbes list of 400 wealthiest Americans.

City College’s Scheinfeld Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation will host the event at 2:30 p.m. April 16 in the Fe Bland Forum. Lopker will discuss her rise from start-up to success after she founded QAD in 1979 when she was only 25 years old.

“She’s been on my list for awhile,” said Melissa Crawford, director of City College’s Scheinfeld Center. “We try to get the best.”

Lopker is the chairman of the board and president of QAD, a global software company that allows manufacturing and distribution companies to track every aspect of their business. She graduated from UCSB with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. Forbes magazine named her “Hero of U.S. Manufacturing” and has profiled her four times. In 1997, she was inducted into the Women in Technology International Hall of Fame.

Story continues below advertisement

“We are very excited to have her come and say how she became such a success,” Crawford said.

Bonnie Chavez, professor and chair in the Business Administration department, will prompt Lopker with questions, then open up the floor to audience questions. The “casual chat” will include between 15 and 20 minutes of networking at the end of the session.

Crawford said networking played a key role in attaining Lopker as a guest speaker.

Last April, the Scheinfeld Center’s Enlightened Entrepreneurship Series hosted Doug Otto, co-founder of Deckers Outdoor Corporation, a successful footwear company that originated in Santa Barbara in 1973. The other founder, Karl Lopker, is Pamela Lopker’s husband, as well as the CEO and Director of QAD since 1981.

This power couple leads QAD’s global enterprises from headquarters right here in Santa Barbara. Networking and a good pitch helped Crawford hook Pamela Lopker as the first guest speaker of the Enlightened Entrepreneurs Series for the new decade.

The National Association of Women Business Owners will be the first premier sponsor of the Enlightened Entrepreneurship Series.

“Pam Lopker is a great role model for women business owners, so we are happy to sponsor this event,” said Cathy Feldman, executive director of women’s association. The Santa Barbara Chapter began this month three years ago with about 10 women members, Feldman said. Now there are 85 women members.

City College’s Scheinfeld Center Enlightened Entrepreneurship Series will host “A Conversation with Pamela Lopker” free of charge. Reservations are required.

More to Discover