AMY GRAY, FOUNDER and CEO & ALFRED WILSON, BUSINESS ADVISOR
New Leaf Speaker Management is a boutique speaker management company that serves as the trusted advisor to each of their clients. A recent profile of New Leaf appeared in Boston Voyager magazine – have a look.
New Leaf Speaker Management was founded in 2001 by Amy Gray, as a favor to famous former hacker Kevin Mitnick. Amy, then a conference producer for Giga Information Group, hired Kevin to keynote at her company’s CIO Summit after seeing him on the cover of WIRED magazine. In 2002, she agreed to serve as his speaking agent to negotiate with his publisher on the number of speaking appearances he’d do in support of his first book, The Art of Deception. For the first five years in business, New Leaf was devoted solely to Kevin, and Amy learned the ropes of the representation business via the school of hard knocks.
In the early days, New Leaf was just Amy, typing away in her brother’s unheated basement, using a ten pound laptop and dial-up internet service. Her connection to the web was a thirty-foot phone line that extended out the bulkhead, through the first-floor kitchen window and into the house’s only phone jack. Her two year old nephew loved to unplug the line, causing her internet connection to go down without warning, taking email drafts and crucial site updates with it.
This situation led to duct-taping the line into the jack.
Amy’s desk was a coffee table propped up on four coffee cans. Conference calls were done from the driveway in her car- the only place that was quiet, air-conditioned and had good cell signal. The neighborhood was rough. On any given day, you might hear the sounds of a drunken brawl between neighbors, or the bells on the local ice-cream truck.
Thankfully, cash flow has improved since then.
Beginning in 2006, New Leaf began adding other clients to the mix with the addition of best-selling author and life coach, Martha Beck, Apple Co-Founder, Steve Wozniak, pioneering athlete, actor and model, Aimee Mullins, rockstar and Kickstarter phenom, Amanda Palmer and conscious capitalism pioneer, Blake Mycoskie.
In 2011, Alfred Wilson joined Amy to lead New Leaf. A native of Walsall, England and a graduate of the London School of Economics, Alf brings a seasoned perspective to the organization. He spent nearly twenty years in teaching, most recently spending nine years as the Farm Program Director at The Hillside School, a private boarding school for boys, located in Marlborough, Massachusetts. As co-owner of New Leaf, Alf is an integral sounding board, offering a balanced view on strategic decisions. He’s disarming, unflappable, relaxed, a superb conversationalist, intensely curious, an enthusiastic rock climber, birder, organic gardener and a life-long soccer player. He also knows that a proper cup of tea requires boiling hot water and five minutes of steeping, followed by a splash of milk, not cream.
Amy is a native of Bangor (Orono), Maine and is 1994 summa cum laude graduate of Babson College in Wellesley, Massachusetts with a Bachelor of Science degree with concentrations in women’s studies and entrepreneurship.
The Gray-Wilson family resides on the north shore of Massachusetts with their son, Cooper, and their rescued pit bull, Pilot.