As I settle into my new role as the Salt Lake Chamber president and CEO, I have come to realize what an amazing opportunity I have been given to unpack and discover the secrets behind Utah’s economic success—the real stories of the men and women who make up Utah’s diverse and thriving business community. Over the past month, I have met with numerous Chamber members in an effort to better acquaint myself with the Chamber community. It has been an inspirational and eye-opening experience.

Recently I sat down with Fred Lampropolous of Merit Medical, a company many of us are well aware of, but one that did not start out as many of us would have imagined. Thirty years ago, Fred started the worldwide, medical device company by scratch, with only three partners, and a single idea for a stronger, safer, disposable syringe. Over time, it has grown into the global behemoth that it is today, and has helped to bolster the life science industry in our state.

Out of all the amazing things that I heard, including the story of Fred’s humble beginnings that included sleeping in the car with his family after they first arrived in Salt Lake City, the most impressive was how Fred’s leadership style was formed by his time as a Special Forces Officer. This experience taught him how to lead, take charge and make decisions. He has since continued to develop and implement these leadership principles in his daily life as the CEO.

These meetings remind me that everyone’s story is different and that most include hard-earned lessons that many in our business community could benefit from. Which is why, I am excited to announce that in the coming months I will be starting a podcast to share these stories of success. Each episode will feature a different local leader, their story and the leadership lessons they have learned.

Let us continue to share our stories to build relationships and grow our Chamber, community and state together.

Derek Miller
President and CEO
Salt Lake Chamber