May 20, 2016
Fran Tarkenton is a serial entrepreneur and NFL Hall of Fame quarterback, and the founder of Tarkenton Companies. During his NFL career, Tarkenton set every major record for quarterbacks: wins, completions, pass attempts, touchdowns, passing yards, and rushing yards. He led the Minnesota Vikings to three Super Bowl appearances and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1986.
But starting even before his NFL career began, he was an entrepreneur. Over more than 50 years in business, Tarkenton has built more than 20 successful companies, all from the ground up. For the past 20 years, he has helped small business entrepreneurs across the continent through GoSmallBiz.com and the Tarkenton Institute, providing business education and tools. As the founder of the Tarkenton Institute, Fran created the Tarkenton Certificate in Entrepreneurship in partnership with the Terry College of Business at the University of Georgia, his alma mater.
In 2003, Fran founded Tarkenton Financial, which is dedicated to helping retirees make informed and educated choices about their retirement plans. Fran only works with a select group of authorized, trusted advisors who share Fran’s values of always putting the customer first.
Fran has been honored many times for his entrepreneurial endeavors. He was the keynote speaker at the SBA’s National Small Business Week 2013 event in Washington, D.C., and the keynote speaker and recipient of the Entrepreneurial Spirit Award at DECA’s 2014 International Career Development Conference. He is also an author, with a number of successful business and sports books to his name, most recently The Power of Failure: Succeeding in the Age of Innovation from Regnery Publishing.
Tarkenton Companies is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, where Fran and his wife Linda make their home.