Financial summit draws big names, big crowds

HOUSTON - Top experts offered advice and tips to help Houstonians get ahead of the financial game.

At a time when many businesses are struggling to keep their doors open, many are looking for help to improve finances, leadership and ideas.

Dawn Wilson said her goal is to help people become healthy and wealthy. With nationwide unemployment at more than 8 percent, Wilson said she's selling popular lifestyle products that have given her financial freedom.

"I'm in a position here where I can show and educate these people on how to have a home-based business and empower themselves right from home," said Wilson.

Former GOP presidential contender Herman Cain was the featured speaker at the International Financial and Leadership Summit. The former chief executive officer of Burger King and Godfather's Pizza challenged the crowd to reinvent their professional and personal goals.

"Everybody is chief executive officer of self first," Cain said.

In the Houston area, unemployment hovers around 6 percent. One recent study showed that opportunities in oil and gas are giving business and job seekers an advantage. But many at the summit hoped to become self-employed.

"It's conversation. How do you turn idea into success? There's no shortcut. Take an idea, market and sell it and meet people's needs," said state Rep. Sylvester Turner.

The Empowerment Summit will continue through the weekend with many other top experts giving advice on how to survive through the economic recovery.

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