Business models, building brands and ethics

Marquette CIRCLES in Seattle

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Diane Irvine
President, chief executive officer and director, Blue Nile, Inc.

Founded in 1999, Blue Nile is the largest online retailer of certified diamonds and fine jewelry — bigger than the next three largest online jewelers combined, according to Internet Retailer Magazine. As CEO, Irvine executes Blue Nile’s strategic growth plan while continuing to build on the success of the company’s retail operation.

Jim Murphy
Executive vice president of international operations, Costco Wholesale

As EVP, Murphy is responsible for directing the activities and expansion of Costco’s operations outside North America, as well as the U.S.-based Global Buying and Export groups. He joined Costco in 1987 as warehouse manager in Portland, Ore., and has held a variety of positions in the company.

James F. Nordstrom, Jr.
President, Nordstrom Direct Division
Executive vice president, Nordstrom

Nordstrom has held his current positions since February 2005. Recently, he was involved with the company’s acquisition of HauteLook, Inc., a leader in the online private sale marketplace, which will enable the company to increase innovation and speed in the way it serves customers.


This Seattle CIRCLES panel was moderated by Mike Flynn, Jour ’62, of Mike Flynn & Associates, LLC.  The panelists answered questions about the business practices of companies they admire most and reflected on the ways in which their own companies implement Jesuit ideals in the workplace.


CIRCLES: This lecture was part of CIRCLES, an innovative business networking program that connects Marquette alumni with people doing business in fields such as health care, finance, journalism and real estate.





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