Dean DeBiase


Serial Rebooter, Author, Speaker  and  Director @AKTA, @DonorPath , @IXchat, @KINGlobal and @1871Chicago, Dean DeBiase is the cofounder of  Reboot Partners – which blends entrepreneurial talent with corporations to reboot innovation and growth, Boardroom Innovation – enabling the next-generation of digitally savvy corporate directors and Startup Partners – helping emerging growth companies disrupt, scale and grow faster.

A digital thought leader and regular media guest, Dean was a recent CEO Guest host on NBC’s The Celebrity Apprentice and a co-author of the best-selling book The Big Moo with Seth Godin and Malcolm Gladwell.  Active in global governance and education, he is a Senior Fellow at Northwestern University’s Kellogg Innovation Network, and a Board Leadership Fellow at the National Association of Corporate Directors                                                             

Dean is a Silicon Valley veteran with a track record scaling emerging growth companies, starting-up new ventures and embedding entrepreneurial-grade talent into multi-national corporations.  He has built leading brands in media, social/local/mobile commerce, games and entertainment, retail and distribution, big data, technology, consumer electronics, Cable TV and Internet services industries—and led global organizations through startup, expansion, turnaround, roll-up, spin-out, M&A and IPO operating phases.

Dean is the Executive Chairman of AKTA, a next-generation digital design studio and has been chief executive of a dozen private and public corporations and Fortune 500 subsidiaries including: Entertainment  Promotions, expanded into mobile platforms;  TNS Media, a roll-up of media and insights companies acquired by WPP;  Fathom Online, a MIXX award winning digital agency; Autoweb, which he built into the most popular digital auto brand and took public and The Imagination Network, a social media games company which he sold to AOL.

As Chairman of Reboot Partners, a growth acceleration group bringing multi-national corporations and emerging digital media organizations together to tackle their most challenging issues and inspire people to deliver on the next generation of innovation, he has served in various Chairman, CEO, lead director and advisory board roles including: Amway,  Donor Path,   Akoo sold to RMG Networks, Donlen sold to Hertz, Centerpost sold to West Corporation, and Excelligence Learning sold to Thoma Bravo; and he has served in interim leadership roles, including CEO of Free Drive,  a media sharing network, acquired into AOL; and CEO of CatchTV, an interactive ad platform, acquired into Liberty Media.

Previously, Dean was the CMO of Zenith/LG, leading global brand strategy  while turning-around the Cable TV division which invented cable modems.  Earlier, he served as Entrepreneur-In-Residence, CMO and President of two Anixter  operating units which won the NCTA’s Vanguard Award for innovation; and as one of the youngest Managing Directors at FedEx, he operated two divisions and helped pioneer the company’s efforts into digital services.

Supporting entrepreneurial and innovation organizations, Dean has served on public & private boards including  Northern Illinois University, Keller Graduate School/DeVry,  Entrepreneurial Center & its incubator 1871, Security Innovation Network, and actively participates in a variety of industry groups,  including the National Association of Corporate Directors (NADC), Association Of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB), Turnaround Management Association (TMA), the National Speakers Association (NSA) and TechNet, a CEO network that partners with policy makers to advance America’s global leadership in the innovation economy.

With a reputation for scaling/optimizing organizations, launching new ventures and mentoring entrepreneurs, Dean is noted for his keen ability to lead strategic-execution while seizing emerging global expansion opportunities, through a collaborative management style which attracts and inspires people and partners to drive profitable growth.  His teams have been acknowledged for industry-shaping innovation and digital disruption, through the development of next-gen products and ventures that produce award-winning services, media, advertising, content, programming, brands, trademarks, technology, software, patents and IP.

He received a BS in Marketing from Northern Illinois University, an MBA from Keller Graduate School of Management and completed the MBA-Plus Program at the University of Chicago.


Recent work include:

1.       Reboot Your Yourself – Semper Paratus “Always Ready” Commencement (video)

2.       Reboot Your Company -  Out of the Ashes (Interview)

3.       Coauthor of the best-selling book, The Big Moo (Interview)