I wanted to post on Olympians turned entrepreneur, but Forbes beat me to it. I had a great time looking through their list (and making assumptions about who’d had work done…) What surprised me, however, was that nearly all the world class athletes they profiled were working in sports related fields – all but one. Among the oar designers, gymnastics coaches, and boxing promoters, you’ll find Mary Mazzio, the most interesting Olympian you’ve never heard of.
How did Mazzio get to be so interesting? Could be the diverse education. First she got a B.A. in philosophy and political science, followed by a J.D., then it was on to graduate studies in film production.
Mary Mazzio competed on the 1992 US Olympic Rowing team before becoming a partner in Boston law firm, . She has since left to found her own film production company, 50 Eggs, and win awards for the documentaries she writes, directs, and produces.
Lemonade Stories chronicles the impact of mothers of wildly successful entrepreneurs was featured by USA Today, Forbes.com, Christian Science Monitor, ABC News.com, CNN Money, UPI, NPR, Bloomberg Radio, Fast Company, Boston Globe, CNN Headlines News. All that attention helped to get Lemonade Stories into the curriculum for educators at the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship.
Apple Pie is about high profile athletes and their moms. (Okay, so she’s not totally divorced from the world of sports, but she’s removed to a degree.) It was hailed by the New York Times, and Sports Illustrated among many others when it on ESPN Classic, Oxygen, WTSN-Canada. It is also shown classrooms nationwide.
Other films include A Hero for Daisy and the recently completed we are BlackRock.
Mazzio sums up the entrepreneurial experience in this quote to the Wellesley Weston:
“Being an entrepreneur can be very rocky—lots of ups and downs,” said Mary. “Working at a large law firm includes a lot of luxuries. Now when there are copies to be made, I make them! But I have really enjoyed working for myself and being able to choose film projects that will be successful and impactful.”
Did I mention Mazzio didn’t take home the gold? Or the Silver? No Bronze either. She told Inc.com this month:
“I think we live in a society that doesn’t tolerate failure. Even kids today think they are born Michael Jordan, but it’s the kids that become real champions that have failed but figured out how to get back up.”
Mazzio has proved herself a truly deserving role model. And I wish more of us had heard of her.