Vera Bradley Co-Founder Speaks at the Beatty Center

Patricia Miller, co-founder of Vera Bradley

Patricia Miller co-founded the Vera Bradley company in 1982 with her business partner, Barbara Bradley Baekgaard.  This semester, she shared her inspirational entrepreneurship story with students, faculty and the business community.

In her presentation, “Friendship, Fashion and Philanthropy”, Bradley related the lessons learned as a business pioneer in an untapped market of stylized handbags and luggage.  She shared with students how her business that once started in a garage with a few yards of fabric, creative mindsets and determination, grew into a publicly traded company with revenue exceeding $360 million in 2010.

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Vera Bradley accessories, handbags, paper and gift items have been spotted on Desperate Housewives, Brothers and Sisters, Entourage, Modern Family and in more than 20 feature-length films, as well as in celebrity gift lounges at the 2010 Tony Awards, 2010 Primetime Emmys.

Patricia Miller’s visit to the School of Business was part of the George G. Spaulding Distinguished Executive Speakers Series.  The School of Business has a 25 year history of bringing prominent, influential business leaders to campus as part of the Speakers Series.

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