The L. Robert Payne Lecture Series 

Bringing Outstanding Entrepreneurs to SDSU

Not many people give back to their alma mater as generously as L. Robert Payne has. The successful SDSU alumnus built his career in real estate and development and now has been able to impact the campus through his philanthropy. The L. Robert Payne Lecture series has brought a dynamic range of entrepreneurs and guest speakers to help inspire the next generation of Aztecs. From Tony Hawk to Ralph Rubio, the lecture series’ high profile guests provide impactful experiences and sage advice, helping build an entrepreneurial community around SDSU.


Thom McElroy, Co-Founder of Volcom to Speak at SDSU

Thom McElroy

Thom McElroy grew up in Orange County, skating, surfing and wondering what he would do with his life. He struggled to find his purpose at SDSU, switched his major and launched his career in graphic design. He eventually created his own successful marketing agency, then went on to co-found Volcom. Join us on February 24th, 2021 at 7pm, in conjunction with the Entrepreneur Society club, as we present Thom McElroy whose talk will be on "How to find your purpose."  Afterwards Thom will take questions from students. Join us.






Outstanding entrepreneurs who have spoken in this series:

  • Ralph Rubio, Co-founder, Rubio's Restaurant
  • Steve Lake, Co-founder, Sector 9
  • Tony Hawk, BirdHouse
  • John Wilson, Co-founder of Stance
  • Kurt Listug, CEO of Taylor Guitars
  • Thom McElroy, Co-founder of Volcom
  • Jeff Church, Co-founder of NIKA water
  • Jim Sinegal, Co-Founder and CEO of Costco
  • Tina Nova, Co-Founder, President, CEO and Director of Genoptix, Inc
  • Norm Brinker, former Chairman of Brinker International
  • John Moores, Founder of Peregrine Systems & Chairman of the Padres
  • John Sarkisian, Co-Founder, Pat & Oscar's Restaurants
  • Irwin Jacobs, Chairman & CEO of QUALCOMM
  • Robert J. Nugent, former Chairman & CEO of Jack in the Box
  • Russell Lewis, Founder and CEO of Rhino Linings
  • Robert Beyster, Founder of SAIC
  • Ron Fowler, Chairman and CEO of Liquid Investments, Inc

 For more information, please contact Bernhard Schroeder at [email protected]