Debra (Debbi) J. Fields epitomizes
the American dream. From America's cherished tradition of humble
beginnings, she launched what has become one of the nation's
most visible, successful dessert empires.
She is one of the few innovators
and entrepreneurs to see their name become a product brand symbol
of quality that is known and revered worldwide. Few dream achievers
(Ford, Edison, Bell among them) live to enjoy such well-deserved
More than 25 years of entrepreneurial,
operational and managerial experience, all of it earned in a
company she built (literally) from scratch. Founder, baker,
chief cookie lover and former Chairman, of Mrs. Fields Cookies,
a $450 million company she founded in 1977. Mrs. Fields has
since sold her company, which is a market leader among fresh-baked
At the age of 20, Debbi was a
young housewife with no business experience. Yet, she had a
dream, a recipe, and a passion for sharing her chocolate chip
cookies. She managed to do what most people considered impossible.
She convinced a bank to finance a business concept which had
never before been proven and which appeared on the surface to
have little likelihood of success.
Mrs. Fields wanted to open a chocolate
chip cookie bakeshop and store. On August 16, 1977, Mrs. Fields
Chocolate Chippery opened its doors to the public in Palo Alto,
California. Twenty-plus years later, Debbi Fields' role had
expanded from managing one shop to supervising operations, brand
name management, public relations and product development of
her company's 600+ company-owned and franchise stores in the
United States and 10 foreign nations.
Debbi Fields' personal values
guide her role as a businesswoman. Her philosophy of excellence,
stated in her motto of "Good Enough Never Is," is
mirrored in a company that has earned a reputation for providing
the best in product quality and superior customer service. She
attributes her greatest success to her ability to relate to
her customers and earn their lifelong loyalty.
With expansion on the horizon
in 1989, Mrs. Fields, Inc. was among the first companies to
take advantage of dramatic computer technology advancements.
Debbi Fields led her company into the computer age, streamlining
operations and production schedules with a state-of-the-art
computer system. Her program is used as a model for business
efficiency at Harvard Business School. It remains an example
of successful application of technology in business management.
Debbi Fields' business accomplishments
and capabilities reach far beyond managing Mrs. Fields, Inc.
Today, she sits on the boards of Outback Steakhouse, WKNO (a
public radio and TV station), and The Orpheum Theater. She is
in the process of co-authoring a book called “Service
She is the author of two cookbooks
published by Time-Life. The first, 100 Recipes from the Kitchen
of Debbi Fields has sold more than 1.8 million copies and was
the first cookbook to top The New York Times bestseller list.
The second, I Love Chocolate cookbook, published in 1994, has
enjoyed tremendous success as well, posting sales of over half
a million copies. She hosted Great American Desserts, a weekly
program that aired nationally, on public television and is also
the name of her third and newest book, Debbi Fields Great American
Desserts, published by Simon and Schuster.
Debbi is the mother of Jessica
(23), Jenessa (21), Jennifer (19), Ashley (14), and McKenzie
(11). She resides in Memphis, Tennessee with her husband and