About

About

Building Companies &
Communities with Creativity,
Civility, & Longevity

From Humble
Beginnings

Raised near the wheat fields of Eastern Washington, the youngest of four children, Dwayne was raised by a loving, single mother who worked long, hard hours as a line cook. Though Dwayne is now one of Seattle’s best-known and most successful CEOs, he grew up poor with often not enough money for food. Once, when they were completely without money or food, his mother stole several potatoes from the restaurant, vowing to return them later, and made potato soup, which Dwayne ate for a week. Dwayne says that something his mother said to him about those times has stuck with him and guided his entire life:

Dwayne, no matter what you do, don’t ever forget where you came from and that you had to eat potato soup every day for a week. When you have employees, be there for them, and they will always be there for you.

Dwayne never forgot.

A Renaissance Man
& Polymath

Dwayne J. Clark is an Industry Disruptor, a Culture Curator, Artifact Collector, and Experience Creator. He is about people, places, participation, and passion. A business magnate, author, producer, and philanthropist, Dwayne is a sought-after speaker and guest of the media, appearing regularly in print and broadcast with The New York Times, Today, Inc, Forbes, The Hollywood Reporter, NBC, and many others. His many personal awards and recognitions include:

  • Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2007
  • Lifetime Achievement Award from Senior Services
  • University Mission Award by Bastyr University California, which named the “Dwayne J. Clark Healthy Aging Program” for him.

Founder of Aegis Living

Aegis Living is one of the most sought-after assisted living facilities in the country. Under Dwayne’s leadership, Aegis has grown to more than 30 locations in the Western U.S., employs more than 2,500 staff members, and to date has served more than 60,000 residents. Continuing the company’s expansion, six projects are currently in development in the Seattle area alone. Aegis has been widely recognized for its excellence of care for customers and employees alike, including:

  • Top 50 Best Places to Work in 2017 by Glassdoor, an online employee review site
  • Top 15 Places to Work with the Best Work/Life Balance in 2017 by Glassdoor
  • Best of Assisted Living Design 2015 from Senior Housing News
  • 2014 Family Business Awards Growth Award by Seattle Business Magazine
  • Best Retirement Facility by 425 Magazine (three years in a row)

Entrepreneur, Mentor,
Philanthropist

It’s no surprise that for much of his career Dwayne has focused on giving the disadvantaged citizens of society a hand up. He has won awards for his employee-first events like E.P.I.C., an annual three-day meeting to empower his team with self-learning outside of business, and provides his staff with unique office spaces and unconventional employee programs.

“Making employees number one in business – even over customers – is how companies become legendary.”

Dwayne is always conscious of his ability to impact people near and far, even beyond his own employees and residents, through events like the March for Civility or donating to the local Boys and Girls Club. Whether it’s an assisted living facility that raises the bar for the industry, a book about what it’s like to care for an aging parent with dementia, or a local cafe that gives back to the community, Dwayne has the commitment to see his visions come to life. Today he supports more than 70 local and global charities and has founded five of his own, including:

Longevity Explorer

Dwayne has held a lifelong obsession with the pursuit of health. After overseeing the care of more than 60,000 Aegis residents, he has a unique awareness of aging and death which make him more curious to learn how to live the greatest life possible. It is also why he is on a crusade to change the mindset of aging, assisted living, and longevity. With his wife Terese, he has traveled to over 89 countries exploring different healing modalities, working with doctors and alternative health specialists and engaging in mind, body, and spirit wellness practices in order to bring back new knowledge to share. You can learn some of the secrets he unearthed in his book 30 Summers More.

A Global Citizen

A Peer Mentor

Author & Playwright

Dwayne is an accomplished playwright with a passion for telling stories that inspire and uplift audiences. His first play, “Seven Ways to Get There,” is an accurate telling of his experience in a men’s therapy group. The well-reviewed production first premiered in early 2015 at Seattle’s ACT Theatre and now is being prepared for a New York City opening in 2020.

Dwayne is also five-time published author whose books include

  • Help Wanted: Recruiting, Hiring and Retaining Exceptional Staff
  • A Big Life – an interactive book for families that helps teach the art of conversation
  • My Mother, My Son – a memoir
  • Saturdays with GG – a children’s book on dealing with grandparent with Alzheimer’s
  • 30 Summers More – a health and wellness guide - with a September 2019 release
  • And his next planned book release, Competing for Culture, due out September 2020

Film Producer

Dwayne has delved head-first into film by starting True Productions, a production company that aims to share real-life stories through collaboration with writers, filmmakers, and playwrights. With his annual donations to the Seattle International Film Festival he champions the art of authentic storytelling by providing an annual $50,000 grant in support of Seattle documentary filmmakers.

His inspiring film projects include:

  • Big Sonia, the award-winning film about a 4’8 Holocaust survivor
  • 8 Borders, 8 Days, a film about a mother and her children and their escape as Syrian refugees
  • Sweetheart Deal, a film that follows women trapped in street prostitution by crippling heroin addictions
  • GOLD BALLS, an inspiring family-friendly documentary about five athletes determined to win a national championship in tennis. The catch is, they’re all over age 80!
  • Thin Skin, a music-infused dark comedy about keeping it together when you're falling apart. This story is loosely based on the award-winning Off-Broadway hit "Now I'm Fine."
  • My Mother, My Son, his memoir that is being made into a motion picture with renowned producer Cary Granat of Immersive Artistry, due out in 2020.

Artifact Collector

Dwayne believes in preserving the past by seeking out artifacts that tell the best stories and sharing them with everyone in his life. His John F. Kennedy collection serves as a reminder of the power of civility. His Wisdom Diaries memorialize the stories of extraordinary people and share the lessons they’ve learned. His books, plays, events, and social missions are all examples of how he collects “living artifacts” and displays them proudly to remind us that life is truly spectacular. And his assisted living facilities, with their beautiful architecture and innovative services and programming, are artifacts of Dwayne’s quest for longevity.

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