A Kansas City area native, Barnett Helzberg, Jr. received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Michigan. He is the former Chairman of the Board of Helzberg Diamonds (est. 1915) and expanded the company from 15 units in 1962 into the third largest jewelry retailer in 23 states which was sold to Berkshire Hathaway (Warren Buffett) in 1995. Barnett is the creator of the I Am Loved® theme and co-creator with Dr. Rich Davis of the book titled “I Am Loved”® published in 2001. He is the author of the book titled “What I Learned Before I Sold to Warren Buffett” published in 2003. He also wrote, with Deborah Shouse, the book, “Entrepreneurs + Mentors = Success; 22 Convincing Stories” published in 2012.
Barnett is currently the Chairman and founder of the Helzberg Entrepreneurial Mentoring Program and Co-founder and Board Member of the University Academy K-12 Charter School in Kansas City, Missouri. He is Co-founder and a Partner of PhonyInvoices.com, a fraud protection company.
Barnett established the Helzberg Leadership Fellows (a program to train young Jewish leadership) and has been an Adjunct Professor at Rockhurst University for more than 17 years.
Barnett lives with his wife, Shirley, and they have two adult sons, Barnett III and Bush, and six brilliant grandsons, and one gorgeous and brilliant granddaughter.