Founder and CEO
Location: Denver, CO
Industry: Travel Club
Jeff S Potter is all about manifesting your destiny.
Potter, Founder and CEO of Manifest, the first members-only luxury travel club of its kind, said that leaders often view their plan as disconnected from the economic and social aspects of the current environment. Instead, Potter focuses on what could be.
Potter drew on various aspects of his career in setting up Manifest. After leaving Frontier Airlines in 2007, he worked stints as the CEO of luxuryvacation club Exclusive Resorts, ran Canadian heli-skiing company CMH where he learned more about experiential travel, and helmed Surf Air, a California club that combined the aspects of curated vacation and private air travel.
Leading over 6 companies as CEO in the airline, hospitality, and traveling sectors and have proven him well.
“I’ve been able to take all of those experiences - both good and bad - and create a company that offers travel in a way yet discovered,” he said.
Since then, he has identified over 45 markets in the US alone and expects to be in each market by 2025 and have over 10,000 members.
“I hope at that point, our commitment to excellence and execution of our member value proposition will have put us into the category of the “go to” travel provider in the luxury travel space,” he said.
Potter was named Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003 by Eastern Washington University; CEO of the Year in 2005 by ColoradoBIZ Magazine; Business Person of the Year in 2006 by the Public Relations Society of America; and received the Governor’s Tourism Award in 2007 for his individual efforts on the behalf of tourism for the State of Colorado. During his tenure at Exclusive Resorts, the company received honors as one of the Best Places to Work in Colorado from 2009 to 2011. Robb Report Magazine also recognized the company as one of the “Best of the Best” Destination Clubs, for the years 2007 to 2010. During his tenure at Surf Air, the company was named Entrepreneur Magazine’s Travel Company of the Year for 2014; one of Forbes Magazine’s Most Promising Companies for 2015; and the Association for Corporate Growth’s winner of their prestigious Business Innovation Award in 2016.
Potters best advice for being a leader is simple: Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.
“Try to never be the smartest person in the room. And, if you are, I suggest you invite smarter people - or find a different room.”
Jeff loves to grill and was once featured in a July 4th issue of the Wall Street Journal, featuring four CEOs, in an article titled "Grill Masters of the Universe".