Earlier this week I had the pleasure of emceeing (is that really a word... it looks so odd) the Portland SHOP/o8 event! Chris Van Dyke, the CEO of Nau, kicked off the day followed by incredibly talented panels of local entrepreneurs sharing their secrets. Judith Spitzer wrote a fabulous review of the event on her Oregon Live Blog.
I have to share with you that I was quite the giddy girl with pixie dust in my eyes as I introduced myself to Chris Van Dyke (that's his photo above). He's possibly the closet thing I'll ever get to the real Mary Poppins. Yes, Chris is Dick Van Dyke's son and he's quite the accomplished business man. But noooooo, the little girl in me didn't compliment him on his accomplishments... but went straight into "I just loooovvvee Mary Poppins" mode. Do you ever do that... get all giddy around someone?
You may recall this post in which I took out a small family trying to get my photo taken with Mary at Disneyland. And now that I look at the photo, I swear the kid dressed as Bert or is it Burt, is a former student of mine. So if you aren't getting the connection here... Dick Van Dyke played Bert the Chimney Sweep. Chris is Dick's son, whom I am sure had to have mingled with Mary, aka Julie Andrews, somewhere along the way. So here is the coolest thing... Chris shared with me that HE was in Mary Poppins... as a boy he was quite tall and fit into a chimney sweep costume quite well.
So now that I'm no longer floating on air... I am really impressed with Nau's mission statement. As Chris shared the company philosophy I realized that Chris was really in touch with his feminine side... Nau's approach to business is quite impressive. Then it dawned on me... Chris must have had one hell of a mother. So thank you to the Mrs. Van Dyke's out there that raised their boys to run their businesses with heart.