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How to EnterCompany: TRUSTe, San Francisco, California
Entry Submitted By: Access Communications
Company Description: TRUSTe is the recognized authority on online privacy practices and policies. Founded in 1997 by the EFF and Commerce.Net, TRUSTe currently certifies and monitors the privacy practices of 2,468 Web sites, including many of the most respected and heavily trafficked, such as Disney, HP, eBay, Apple, and the NFL, benefiting more than 240 million consumers daily.
Nomination Category: Individual Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best Executive – Service Businesses – up to 100 Employees

Nomination Title: Fran Maier, CEO

Describe for the judges the activities and accomplishments of the nominated executive during the eligibility period (up to 500 words):

Fran Maier has been a leader and influencer in the online world, focusing on
building brands, building trust and consumer privacy for over 15 years. As the CEO
of TRUSTe, the leading trustmark and privacy authority on the Internet, Fran helps
over 2000 companies – from small businesses to Fortune 500 – build trust by
ensuring consumer choice over their personal information.

Founded in 1997, TRUSTe,  under Fran’s leadership has grown to the leading
privacy trustmark and authority serving thousands of companies and millions of
consumers. In 2007, after 6 years at the helm, Fran recognized that TRUSTe was
at a pivotal point:  On one hand, the brand and business were growing rapidly;
clients, consumers, and regulators were looking for more.  Online privacy issues
were only becoming more difficult to solve.  On the other hand, as a non-profit
industry association, TRUSTe could not effectively access capital to make
investments in needed technology, infrastructure and marketing to drive TRUSTe
to greater impact. 

In July of 2008, despite several hurdles and naysayers, Fran successfully raised
significant capital from esteemed venture capital firm Accel Partners and led
TRUSTe through an unusual transition from a non-profit to a quasi-internet-startup.

Fran has wasted no time in using the new found capital to drive TRUSTe serve
more clients and consumers.  This year, recognizing that small businesses make
up nearly 99% of all U.S. employers - TRUSTe launched inexpensive and effective
privacy services solutions specifically tailored to the needs of small businesses. 
In early 2009, TRUSTe’s aquired Haute Secure, a small security company founded
by ex-Microsoft employees, to expand its ability to scale its services and bringing
innovative innovative scanning and malware detection tool to help establish, build
and protect the reputation of trustworthy TRUSTe sealholders and hundreds of
millions of their users.  TRUSTe is also working with its clients to deliver
enhanced notices to consumers regarding online advertising practices.  Fran draws from her
experience as founder and GM of Match.com and her role at TRUSTe to help
clients the myriad of privacy issues brought on by social networking.  As an
innovator, Fran understands the privacy arena is an ever changing landscape and
is keenly in tune to the developing demands and needs in the market.

Fran’s also acts as an industry thought leader, to lead the charge in the
pursuit of best privacy practices, and to educate and share her knowledge with consumers,
businesses, and policy makers.  In the past 12 months, she has spoken at
industry conferences including RSA, Tech Policy Summit, and AlwaysOn
Summit.  She has also appeared before the Federal Trade Commission and the
US Department of Commerce and has testified before the U.S. House of
Representatives Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection.
Fran is also an active member of the Stanford GSB’s Women in Management
organization and the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives encouraging
and mentoring young women.

I would like to nominate Fran Maier for this award because in past year alone, she
has led the company through a critical transition, grown TRUSTe despite one of
the toughest economies in decades, and has continued to establish herself as an
innovator and thought-leader.

List the URLs (web addresses) of any online news stories, press releases, or other documents that you would like the judges to see that support your entry. IMPORTANT: List each URL on a separate line, begin each URL with http://, and enclose each URL in square brackets. For example, [http://www.yourcompany.com/pressrelease.html]:


Provide a brief biography of the nominated executive (up to 100 words):

Fran Maier is a recognized authority on privacy best practices on the internet
today. She is an industry expert known for her insights regarding online privacy,
behavioral targeting online and marketing to women. She joined TRUSTe in 2001
and has since grown the company significantly, taking it from non-profit to
for-profit status.

Prior to joining TRUSTe, Fran founded Match.com, establishing credibility, safety
and trust in online dating. She has also held executive marketing roles at
Women.com and Kmart’s BlueLight.com subsidiary.

Fran holds a BA and MBA from Stanford University. She lives in Alameda, CA with
her husband and two sons.

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