By Linda Wisch-Davidsohn
A conversation with a mensch — Daniel Pidgeon
A few days prior to Rosh Hashanah, I received a “lead” from Zona Pidgeon regarding her son, Daniel, who will soon become the youngest chairman of the executive board for the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA).
I contacted Daniel to set up an appointment, and we had the opportunity to engage in a long conversation. By the time the “conversation/interview” was completed, I felt as though I had made a new friend. Although there is a difference in our ages, we found multiple similarities.
Dan grew up in Des Moines, Iowa, the son of Zona and Barry Pidgeon, and the youngest of four brothers, Steven, Michael and David. The Pidgeons, who came to Dallas in 1993, previously owned a furniture and home furnishings store in Des Moines.
Dan fondly remembers working his way up the ranks — from working in janitorial, the warehouse as well as the loading dock, jumping on the rolls of carpet, testing the mattresses, until he finally was able to work the sales floor. Customer service was inculcated within him at an early age. As he matured, he began to see with clarity the importance of customer service as well as other elements that it took to make a business succeed and thrive.
I asked Daniel what the greatest influence in his life has been thus far — to which he quickly replied: “ …his Jewish upbringing in Des Moines, combined with the innocence of his hometown and having the opportunity to work alongside his parents who inculcated a strong sense of Jewish values, family and developing a strong work ethic.”
Dan is a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin, where he received a degree in economics and also served as president of ZBT. Actress Renee Zellweger, was a ZBT “little sister” during Dan’s stint at UT. While at UT, he met his wife, the former Mindi Michaelson, daughter of Frankie and Dr. Jerold Michaelson.
In 1995, Dan (co-founder and chairman) founded Starpower Home Entertainment Systems, Inc. Starpower, a luxury brand electronics retailer and custom installer in Dallas and Scottsdale, Arizona, also owns Ed Kellum & Son Appliance Company, which is based in Dallas.
Starpower is one of the largest custom installers in the country, performing thousands of installations across the U.S. Starpower has been recognized for excellence in the Consumer Electronics industry achieving such awards as Dealerscope Magazine’s “Best of the Best” and being named “Best Specialty Audio Video Company” by the industry trade publication twice, along with many other trade and retail organizations.
Daniel is the current vice chairman and next chairman of the executive board for the CEA which is the producer of the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES), held in Las Vegas each January. The CES is Las Vegas’ largest retail trade show having over 160,000 attendees and more than 2 million square feet of exhibits from innovators all over the world, such as Apple, Microsoft, Sony, Samsung and many others. The CES is almost 50 years old and it is believed that Dan is the youngest chairman of the CEA, which boasts a membership of more than 2,000.
Dan is also a member of CEA’s board of Industry Leaders, a member of the Dallas Chapter of Young Presidents Organization, (YPO), a board member of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) National Consumer Technology Board and active as a board member of multiple startup enterprises and charitable organizations. He is also the co-owner of the largest privately held floor covering companies in the United States, Star Floors. He was also a participant in Season II of the Aaron Family JCC’s Dancing With the Stars event.
Dan is a frequent speaker on issues relating to the Consumer Electronics Industry. Over the summer, he visited Poland and Auschwitz. In Poland he spoke to members of the Polish press on the Consumer Electronics Industry. The event was held in Warsaw at the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, which opened Sept. 10.
Prior to concluding our conversation, I asked him what he considered his greatest success? Without hesitation, Daniel replied: “Rearing my two wonderful children, Madison, 17, and Max, 14, who always wake me up with a smile.” The pair are students at Greenhill. He added that “the joy of running into work, watching the business grow and observing his customer’s faces light up with happiness.”
As mentioned earlier, there is undoubtedly something remarkable about Dan Pidgeon — his menschkeit, patience shine clearly in all that he does.
Morton Lewis AZA holds Neon Dance
On Saturday, Sept. 6 Dallas BBYO AZA Chapter Morton Arthur Lewis held its annual Neon Dance fundraiser. Each year the members of Lewis hold a dance for the entire North Texas- Oklahoma Region of BBYO and raise money for their “Stand Up” cause.
In the past, Lewis has raised money for breast cancer research and The Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children. This year, the members of Lewis decided to use the dance to earn money for the Israeli Defense Forces and collect cans for the Jewish Family Service Food Bank. After all expenses were paid, Lewis raised over $3,300 for the IDF.
In addition, all the cans collected have been distributed and donated to the Jewish Family Service Food Pantry.
AJC welcomes new assistant regional director
Good wishes to new assistant regional director of The American Jewish Committee of Dallas, Casie Squires.
Casie has returned to her passion for advocacy for Israel, following a two-year career with Nordstrom, most recently as a department manager.
Prior to working for Nordstrom, Casie served as campus coordinator for The David Project in New York. During her time at The David Project, she brought numerous innovative Israel-related programs to over 25 college campuses. She helped combat anti-Israel sentiment on campuses such as Israel Apartheid Week and BDS.
Her passion for Israel was ignited when she attended a Birthright/March of the Living trip in 2006. This experience led Casie to spend her senior year of college abroad at the University of Haifa, where she studied Hebrew and Middle Eastern Studies.
Casie interned for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee and the Jewish Federation of Southern Arizona.
Casie holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication from the University of Arizona with minors in Jewish studies, business and dance.