Keynote Speakers

Chieh Huang, CEO and Co-founder, Boxed

Chieh Huang is the CEO and a Co-founder of Boxed, a warehouse-club delivery service that launched in 2013. Eight years later, the company delivers anywhere in the Continental USA, with revenue now in the hundreds of millions.

Prior to Boxed, Chieh earned his J.D. from Fordham University and his Bachelor of Economics degree from The Johns Hopkins University.  After law school, he took a position as a corporate attorney at Proskauer where he quickly discovered that a career in law wasn’t for him.  He promptly moved into his friend’s attic and helmed a mobile gaming company called Astro Ape which drew the attention of games giant, Zynga. 

Prior to its eventual IPO, Zynga acquired Astro Ape in 2011 and installed Chieh as the director of their New York office where he led the fastest and most efficient game team within the company.  In 2013, seeing an opportunity in mobile commerce, he started Boxed from his parents’ garage.  Since then, the company has raised over $300 million dollars, and invested heavily into its technology.  Boxed writes its own software, runs its own state of the art fulfillment centers and builds its own automation robotics in-house.

Chieh is an innovator, a serial entrepreneur, and a philanthropist.  He personally pays for the college tuition of his full-time employees’ children, recognizing he wouldn’t be where he is today if not for the education he received.  Boxed has also taken a stand against the “pink tax” by refusing to charge extra for products specifically marketed to women.

Huang’s personal honors include being named to Bloomberg Businessweek’s 50 people to watch, and to National Retail Federation’s list of People Shaping Retail’s Future.  Huang was also chosen as one of Crain’s “40 Under 40” and for Goldman Sachs’ list of “100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs.” Finally, Entrepreneur Magazine included Chieh on their list of “The 50 Most Daring Entrepreneurs.”

Huang is a board member of the Museum of Chinese in America, as well as an advisory board member of McLaren Racing.

Jimmy Ferguson, Owner/Operator, J-C's McD's Ltd. Small Business Champion

Jimmy and his wife, Cindi, have owned and operated 23 McDonald’s restaurants in Austin, and other central Texas cities for the past 27 years. Prior to owning McDonald’s franchises, Jimmy held the position of assistant vice president and dean of students at Arkansas Tech University in Russellville, AR.

As a college administrator, Jimmy served the National Association for Campus Activities (NACA) as the chairman of the board of directors and held an appointment by Gov. Bill Clinton to the Arkansas Governor’s Advisory Council on Volunteerism.

During his Career with McDonald’s, Jimmy has served as the chair, vice chair of the Asian McDonald’s Operators Association (AMOA) and West Division President for AMOA. Jimmy has also served as the chair of McDonald’s Asian Business Vision Team, president of Central Texas McDonald’s Operator’s Association, Chairman of McDonald’s Houston Region Leadership Council, member of West Division Leadership Council, member of National Leadership Council, and chair of the McDonald’s National Asian Consumer’s Marketing Team.

Jimmy is currently serving as the Past Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Asian/Pacific Island American Chamber for Commerce and Entrepreneurship, member of Board of Director for Asian/Pacific Island American Scholarship Fund, Advisory Board for the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce, and AAPI Business Finance Council. He is a tireless advocate for the growth and health of small businesses, as he personally knows the daily challenges of operating a small business.

As the Chair of National ACE, Jimmy has led to conduct a national survey, jointed by the US Black Chamber, the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce – How COVID affected their minority owned small business. Among its key findings, more than 84% of AAPI business owners say Covid-19 has had a negative effect on their business. Jimmy also led AANHPI small business roundtable discussion with leaders such as Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Senator Ben Cardin, and WH Senior Advisor Cedric Richmond to help AANHPI to recover from the impact of the Pandemic. The discussion also provides a full understanding of the severe damage these acts of anti-Asian bias and hate have had on the business leaders and their employees.

In 2015, Jimmy was a US Delegate to APEC (Asian Pacific Economic Council) SME, Summit in Makati City Philippines.