About the WEL Institute
The Kendra Scott Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute (WEL Institute) at The University of Texas at Austin will strengthen the next generation of courageous, creative female leaders who will change the world — in business and beyond.
Through an environment of community, diversity, inclusivity and empowerment, we will redefine leadership and entrepreneurship by growing the number of women-owned and women-led businesses.
Kendra Scott is a loving mom, a driven entrepreneur and a passionate designer who believes the truest form of success is giving back in a meaningful way.
She started her company in 2002, just three months after her first son was born, with only $500. Known for her dynamic use of color and genuine materials, Kendra’s commitment to innovation, quality and detail has brought her from a small startup to a billion-dollar brand that has won over loyal fans, media and celebrities alike. With over 2,000 employees, Kendra Scott boasts a thriving web business and over 100 stand-alone stores, and has expanded beyond fashion jewelry into fine jewelry, home décor and beauty.
Since she began her company, Kendra has lived by three core values: Family, Fashion and Philanthropy. She created a brand and culture that authentically values giving back and making a positive difference in the community. The Kendra Scott company maintains a focus on its customers and the causes close to their hearts, having donated over $30 million to local, national and international causes since 2010.
Kendra is a member of the board of directors for the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. She has been awarded with the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 National Award and the Breakthrough Award from the Accessories Council Excellence Awards, named Outstanding Mother of the Year by the Mother’s Day Council, awarded Texas Businesswoman of the Year by the Women’s Chamber of Commerce, listed by Forbes as one of America’s Richest Self-Made Women, and named one of the Top 100 Entrepreneurs of the Year by Upstart Business Journal and Best CEO by Austin Business Journal. She is a member of the Council of Fashion Designers of America and maintains her position as chairman of the board of Kendra Scott, LLC.