Amy Hilliard

Amy Hilliard, a native Detroiter and honors graduate of both Howard University and the Harvard Business School, is the founder and CEO of The ComfortCake Company®, makers of “poundcake so good it feels like a hug!™” The Company also produces Sugarless Sweetness®, their proprietary sugar substitute for baking, as well as other baked goods and whole grain pizzas. Launched in 2001, ComfortCake® is distributed nationally through foodservice and retail channels and through their website ( Customers have included United Airlines, 7-Eleven, Walgreen’s, Jewel-Osco, Dominick’s, Rush Medical Center and the Chicago Public Schools. The ComfortCake® Company is also an approved supplier to McDonald’s. Shortly, the company name will be expanded to The ComfortCake® Kitchen.

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ComfortCake® has been featured on CNN, Fox, The Food Network, AOL, Home Shopping Network, Fortune, Black Enterprise, Essence and other national publications. After just two years in business, ComfortCake® was selected as the Emerging Minority Enterprise of the Year by the U.S. Department of Commerce. The Company has since been honored by Jewel-Osco, Safeway and Chartwells-Thompson, a division of Compass Group.

Amy Hilliard is a former senior marketing executive with leading Fortune 500 corporations and entrepreneurial firms including Bloomingdale’s, Gillette, Pillsbury, L’Oreal and Burrell Communications Group. Additionally, Ms. Hilliard owns The Hilliard Group, a strategic marketing consulting, product development and speaking firm whose clients have included IBM, American Express, HBO and Gap.

Ms. Hilliard was named a 2009 Business Leader of Color by Chicago United, was selected for the Clinton Foundation’s Entrepreneurship Program, and is a graduate of the Chicago Urban League’s nextONE program. Amy Hilliard was the first African-American elected to the board of the National Association of the Specialty Food Trade, and currently sits on the Multi-Cultural Advisory Board of PepsiCo and on the Board of Trustees of Howard University where she serves on the Academic Excellence, Finance and Development committees.

A proud mother of two young adults, Ms. Hilliard is an internationally recognized speaker and author of “TAP INTO YOUR JUICE” – Find Your Gifts, Lose Your Fears and Build Your Dreams, which has been endorsed by Michelle Obama.

A recognized social activist in the Chicago community, Ms. Hilliard established the HUGS Foundation to further develop the entrepreneurial spirit in others through mentorship and scholarship programs. The mission of the HUGS Foundation is to inspire Humble, Unbelievable, Greatness and Success. Ms. Hilliard’s latest book, “POUNDING CAKE INTO A BUSINESS” will be released soon.