MALS2023 Day One: Building On JR’s Legacy

The 2023 Market America Leadership School started off today with an incredible tribute to our founder, mentor, and hero – JR Ridinger. Loren spoke from the heart during a touching segment celebrating JR’s life and legacy. JR built a truly incredible business because he was one of the few people to really see the full potential of people power. But more importantly, he helped others see the potential within themselves. When he combined people power with the UnFranchise system & vertical profitability & SHOP.COM, JR created a dynamic entrepreneurial opportunity unlike any the world had ever seen.  

While JR’s vision, generosity, authenticity, and leadership will be forever missed – he left us all a truly amazing business opportunity and blueprint for profound economic empowerment. We all have the opportunity to take what JR gave us and create amazing legacies of our own!

After Loren’s powerful tribute to JR, we then focused on something JR loved – hands-on experiential learning and leader-building designed to help UnFranchise owners excel in business. Kevin Buckman and Andrew Chee led a powerful segment along with Katherine Yin which focused on the importance of defining your why. Kevin and Andrew led a great workshop assignment where UFOs wrote down and reflected on their goals and plans to achieve them. It’s just great to see JR’s vision carry on without missing a beat. What he built for us all is truly a legacy we all share! 

Kevin followed that segment with another powerful presentation on leadership with Amber Yang and Johnny Huang. Kevin & the team stressed the importance of duplicating the result-producing activities within your organization to amplify success – something JR was a huge believer in. It’s about doing the right things, leading by example, and working together as a team. We often mistake confidence for competence so it’s important to have a team that always keeps you grounded while still pushing you to be your best. More than anything, it’s about embracing the challenges and difficulties you face in life and business because they ultimately make you a better leader and a more experienced person.

We were later treated to an amazing presentation from Marc about the importance of time management – something which plays into the success of each and every entrepreneur. Marc’s a huge believer in starting each day fresh, finishing strong, and always showing up prepared. As Marc says “Proper preparation prevents poor performance.” Something that resonates in nearly all pursuits! One of our favorite takeaways from Marc’s presentation was to show up to every meeting as if it were the second meeting – meaning you’re so well prepared for your meeting that you’re already working on the next steps in your mind. Be prepared and treat the business as a business and you’ll make it happen. 

Following Marc’s powerhouse presentation, Andrew Weissman spent time highlighting some of the different skits and Magic Moments from JR’s remarkable career which highlights the various aspects of success, leadership, mindset, belief, and determination which made JR such a dynamic and unparalleled leader. It was amazing to see JR’s famous closing highlights from past conventions like climbing the stairs to success, crossing Niagara Falls on a tightrope, programming the brain, and breaking free of the endless hamster wheel. JR’s invaluable lessons live on in the hearts, minds, and experiences of our UnFranchise. Family – and remain every bit as profound as the day he first introduced them. 

Elizabeth Weber-Walliser delivered a touching tribute in the form of a beautiful poem highlighting JR’s impact on her life and the magic moments shared together. It’s a truly beautiful thing to witness this level of respect, love, friendship, and admiration – something which rings true for everyone lucky enough to have ever known JR.

We brought Day One of MALS2023 to a close with a heartfelt talk from Fat Joe about life’s ups, downs, and opportunities. Joe spoke in depth about his experiences and what Market America and the Ridinger family mean to him. It all comes down to being there for one another through thick and thin, and staying true to yourself. Being an international rap legend, Joe isn’t your average UFO – but he builds the business the same way, and with the same passion and belief that we all share. It’s incredibly uplifting to see this business inspire and uplift people from all walks of life! 

Stay tuned for more updates tomorrow as we lock in for more impactful presentations and empowering perspectives on Day Two of MALS2023! 


Andrew Bonner, Lead Social Media Writer

Andrew Bonner, Lead Social Media Writer


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