Julie Haack

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Winner Tag

Location: Charlotte, NC
Founded: 1981
Industry: Fine jewelry/diamond brokering

Julie Haack

Donald Haack Diamonds, Inc.

“My father was a diamond and gold miner in South America in the 1950s,” says Julie Haack, president of Donald Haack Diamonds, Inc. “I watched him and my mother with their serial entrepreneurial abilities, and learned from them how to source well-cut diamonds and fine gemstones, how to find one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces and how to run a business ethically while having fun and giving back to the community.”

Quick Tip: “Surround yourself with good, level-headed people who are like and unlike you. Hire a great team and you will have a great business.”

Haack experienced her most challenging time as a leader during the recent recession, when high-level management staffers left and took employees with them. “I learned how to have a backbone and realized that [leadership] was not a popularity contest,” she says. “I learned that loyalty and honor are more about me and the way that I treat people and respond to them, than it is about their character and their behavior.”

Donald Haack Diamonds supports Opera Carolina, and Haack sits on the board of advisors. She has also served on numerous other boards over the years, including for the Metrolina Business Council and the Salvation Army.