Derek Notman has scuba-dived the cold depths of Lake Superior, braved the streets of Johannesburg, launched a new career in Vermont, and holds dual Irish-American citizenship.
Now he’s settled in Madison, where he founded a business providing financial services to entrepreneurs and launched a charity to funnel some of the revenues from his business to support budding entrepreneurs.
Notman is 37 and lives with his wife and soon-to-be 6-year-old son. Among the other highlights of his biography are surfing in the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans and the Caribbean and Celtic seas.
I wanted to have more meaning towards what I was doing and I wanted it to be connected to what I’m doing on a day-to-day basis. I work with entrepreneurs through all stages of their business. I get paid, my business generates revenue from working with these entrepreneurs. So why not start a charity that I can donate money from my core business to this charity and then support charitable organizations?
What efforts does the charitable group support?
Through the (Wisconsin Technology) Council there’s something called the Wisconsin YES! competition. It’s a statewide contest where it’s mainly high school kids, but I think some junior high kids do enter. But they have these startup businesses that they’re working on, usually with classmates and teachers and parents. So my wife and I judge some of those, along with a lot of other judges, and we also donate some money to the winner to help them start their business. Read the full story here.