Jill Griffin

Author, Board Seat Coach, Loyalty Expert, and Vice Chair Luby’s/Fuddruckers

Luby's, Fuddruckers logos

I am passionate about helping women (and men) rise as leaders into Senior Management and onto Corporate Boards.

Through personal coaching, keynotes, and workshops, I train individuals, leaders, and teams to tap into their passions and make change happen.

I know of what I speak:  For over a decade, I have served as an Independent Board Director for Luby’s/Fuddruckers Restaurants (NYSE: LUB). Because I am constantly saturated with new learning, my board experience has made me a better leader and, best of all, a better person. I want others to have the same privilege!

I grew up in rural North Carolina surrounded by talented teachers who taught me the love of writing. In the late eighties, I launched a solo customer loyalty consultancy smack dab in what I now know was Austin’s biggest business downturn. While teaching part-time at UT’s business school, I began working on what I intuitively knew could be my best company brochure:  a published book. Little did I know that it would take me seven long years of setbacks and unthinkable twists and turns. Many times, I thought of giving up. But with the release of Customer Loyalty:  How to Earn It (Lexington Books, 1995), I finally became a published author. Right off the bat, the book became “hot” and put me on the map both nationally and internationally. Even Red McCombs, the UT powerhouse and oft-quoted billionaire, read my book and contacted me. Five business books have followed.

My alma mater is the University of South Carolina Moore School of Business. There, I earned my Bachelor of Science in Business (Magna Cum Laude) and was determined to get my MBA. That’s when I learned a valuable lesson: Ask for the money!  Internships and a fellowship followed, and I graduated debt free. Two decades later, it was my turn:  I established the Moore School’s Jill Griffin MBA Fellowship to give a leg-up to needy students (sorta like me).

Out of grad school, I joined RJ Reynolds Tobacco Company. Day-after-day, generous bosses and mentors helped me learn the business. I did my part by often working “double shifts.” My bosses noticed and rewarded me with promotion after promotion. I learned first-hand how to build valuable brands, how to co-create and critique Madison Avenue advertising and most importantly, how to lead teams that build strong bonds with cross-functional partners. When I resigned to join an Austin start-up, I was at the helm of RJR’s largest brand, Winston.

Loving the city of Austin as I do, I was delighted to serve eight years as Chairwoman of. VisitAustin.org. Trust me, it was the best pro-bono job on the planet!

My hobbies include “being there” for my circle of family and friends, acrylic painting, World War II history and, I’ll be candid… recreational shopping!

Through personal coaching, keynotes, and workshops, Jill Griffin trains individuals, leaders, and teams to tap into their passions and make change happen.


Jill Griffin is a NYSE Corporate Board Director, Forbes.com Contributor, Harvard Working Knowledge author of five business books. Earn Your Seat on a Corporate Board and Women Make Great Leaders are her most recent releases.

Jill is founder of Jill Griffin Executive Learning whose mission is to help professionals, particularly women, rise to executive leadership and on to corporate boards.

She serves as Independent Director for Luby’s-Fuddruckers (NYSE: LUB). The dual companies employ nearly 10,000 staff and Fuddruckers is globally franchised. Jill is Chairwoman of the Corporation’s Talent & Administration Committee overseeing Digital Marketing, Management Succession, Store Operations, Human Resources and Corporate Branding

Jill was privileged to serve as Chairwoman of Visit.Austin.org for eight years and learned first-hand how to globally market ATX. She represented Austin on the inaugural British Airways flight to London and served internationally as an ATX Ambassador.

Jill is a magna cum laude graduate, MBA scholarship recipient and Distinguished Alumna  of the University of South Carolina Moore School of Business where she earned her undergraduate and MBA degrees.

Jill began her career in Brand Management at R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company where she rose to manage the corporation’s largest brand, Winston.

Jill’s hobbies include camping, biking, yoga and acrylic painting and charcoaling. 

Jill Griffin uniquely, captures what all of us should know about passion, vision, courage and leadership.

Arthur R. Emerson
CEO KLRU, San Antonio, TX

Jill Griffin pushes past the myths and misconceptions, and provides smart insights about how professional advancement and achieve-ment really works.

Dorie Clark
Adjunct professor, Duke University Fuqua School of Business

Thank you Jill for highlighting the true impact of women in lead- ership roles outside the home and community.

Ada-Renee Johnson
Head of SWE & Diversity Pipeline, Google, Inc.

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