Kay Henze
Kay HenzeCEO & Executive Director, Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network (BEN)

“When in doubt, bootstrap. Using your own personal resources is the easiest way to start a business. You don’t have to convince investors about the merits of your idea. You just have to convince yourself.” -Ryan Holmes, Co-founder of Hootsuite

Kay Henze’s expertise in board service and leadership consistently showcases her ability to drive meaningful change and growth. Serving on multiple boards, her contributions are most evident at Ent Credit Union in Colorado Springs. As an Independent Board Director and Governance Committee Member, Kay’s insights have been invaluable, particularly her proficiency in strategic marketing and technological integration. As a member of the Nomination and Governance Committee, Kay has also helped to strengthen the Board, while keeping customers at the center of all decisions. At the Blackstone Entrepreneurs Network [BEN] in Denver, Kay evolved the board structure from an advisory board to a fully functioning Board of Directors with fiduciary, community, and leadership responsibility, showcasing her adaptability and strategic vision. Beyond these roles, Kay’s board contributions at Beyond Campus Innovations and Fear Free Pets have been characterized by the inception of visionary strategies and a keen focus on market adoption and corporate governance.
BEN, under Kay’s vision and stewardship, witnessed an exponential transformation. She played an instrumental role in expanding its singular revenue source to diversified categories, setting the organization on a path of long-term sustainability. Under her guidance, BEN established 94 new advisory groups since 2020 and secured $2M in funding for its innovative projects. One of her standout initiatives was the launch of “BEN Dens,” CEO peer groups that have become a cornerstone of BEN’s programming. By 2022, thanks to these and other strategies, entrepreneurs had contributed an impressive 10% of the total income, solidifying the resilience and versatility of BEN’s ecosystem. Furthermore, Kay’s foresight led to the development and launch of the first community
wide digital platform at BEN. This initiative fostered enhanced communication, collaboration, and engagement, all powered by cutting-edge technology, setting the organization apart from its peers.
Her 23-year tenure with Verizon Wireless is a testament to her enduring commitment and professional acumen. At Verizon, Kay introduced groundbreaking initiatives that yielded a remarkable 31% revenue lift and a 17% surge in customer acquisitions. Leading a $25B business unit, she oversaw operations catering to over 28 million customers across 11 states. With her proactive strategies, Verizon secured a 22% year-on-year increase in net customer acquisitions, largely by attracting customers from competitors. Her vision saw the implementation of real-time metrics across 2,000 stores, optimizing operations and maximizing market penetration.
Kay’s roles at SectorSeven and Zayo Group further showcased her capability for strategic innovation. At SectorSeven, she pioneered the e-commerce engagement model, while at Zayo Group, she spearheaded digital tools to bolster sales trajectories.
Kay graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from King College. She has achieved significant recognition throughout her career, including being a two-time winner of Verizon’s President Cabinet award and being named the Silicon Flatirons Community Member of the Year for 2019-2020. Beyond these accolades, Kay is a certified member of Corporate Directors International, a founding CEO of Colorado Inclusive Economy, and a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors [NACD].

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