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Family Money Health Work Play Shop Expert Advice
Home >Follow your bliss
The MyPrimeTime story starts with three little words:

"Follow your bliss."

That advice was given by renowned author and comparative religion professor Joseph Campbell in a PBS documentary that I first saw in April 1994. I was spellbound. And soon my pal Helen Whelan and I were sharing ideas about how to bring Campbell's message to a mass audience.

For years, we kicked around the idea of creating a media company based on empowering people. We made a few false starts, but we kept moving forward; I produced a TV pilot, focusing on transformational moments in people's lives. We spent much of our summer vacations working on our ideas. But it wasn't until the explosion of the Internet that we saw a way to bring together the broadcast, online and business pieces that would make such a venture commercially viable.

Starting this past winter, Helen quietly but doggedly convinced Craig and me that building a multi-media company that empowers Ann Winbladproactive adults was a phenomenal idea. Lou Dobbs (our boss at CNN) agreed. Craig (who tripled the traffic at CNNfn.com) came up with a strategic roadmap. Don Currin of Arthur Andersen (and an angel investor) focused us on baby boomers. And before any of us could say, "We're heading for the coast," we had funding from venture capital firm Hummer Winblad.

With little more than an outline for a business, and a conviction that this could be a big winner, Craig and Helen lined up one of the best names in venture capital. Hummer Winblad looks at over 3000 business plans a year and funds fewer than ten!

While Dobbs crossed town to launch his space site, Craig and Helen landed in San Francisco on July 4, 1999. Talk about independence! I followed on July 12, 1999. We camped out at Hummer Winblad and started hiring. As of Nov. 1, 1999, we have 50 co-owners, a TV partnership with PBS' Nightly Business Report , a major sponsorship with Fidelity Investments and a second round of financing on the way. We're more convinced than ever that our timing couldn't be better, that 80 million people age 35-54 have more opportunity than limitation and that myprimetime.com can be their home on the World Wide Web. And that by following our bliss, we can help you follow yours.

Donald Van de Mark
Cofounder, VP and Editorial Director

Helen Whelan
Cofounder, President

Craig Forman
Cofounder, CEO




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