About the Hayek Group

What is The Hayek Group?

The Hayek Group is a 501c3 non-profit with the mission of promoting freedom and the prosperity freedom brings. Among social organizations, this local charity is one of the best charities to donate to in Northern Nevada. Hayek Group monthly dinner meetings feature speakers on a wide variety of topics that inform, challenge, and develop those who attend. The Hayek Group K-12 financial education outreach places the Dave Ramsey Foundations in Personal Finance program in Northern Nevada schools, recognizing sound money management provides financial freedom. The Hayek Group Hobnobber Program provides college aged youth with a Hayekian education, financial education, and the opportunity to network with accomplished Hayek Group members. The Hayek Discussion Group provides participants the opportunity to discuss the issues of the day. In all it does, The Hayek Group seeks to arm people with the understanding of why freedom is both fair and fruitful.

Why is the organization called The Hayek Group?

The Hayek Group adopts the name of the late Austrian economist Friedrich Hayek because we embrace his central premise: Freedom is not only an end worth pursuing, but also a primary means for producing prosperity. At the end of his ROAD TO SERFDOM book, Hayek said, “A policy of freedom for the individual is the only true progressive policy.” The Hayek Group seeks to inform, challenge, and develop its members and guests by providing thoughtful speakers at dinner meetings, by providing opportunities to mix with people who value freedom, and by engaging in meaningful outreach that extends freedom and its benefits.
Friedrich Hayek



The topics of dinner meetings vary widely. They often inform those who attend about the social or economic issues facing us, though some provide insight about how to achieve personal, business, or organizational development. Everyone is invited to The Hayek Group dinner meetings. You do not need to be a member to attend. Because many interesting people attend from all walks of life, the dinner meetings provide a great opportunity to meet new people and socialize. That is, The Hayek Group is one of the best social organizations in Northern Nevada.


It is well understood that many people are less free and less prosperous because they never learned how to manage money and credit when they were young. The Hayek Group is partnering with the Ramsey Group and with Northern Nevada schools to place the Dave Ramsey financial literacy curriculum into Northern Nevada schools. Since 2017, The Hayek Group has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to augment the financial literacy of youth, serving thousands of students at more than 25 schools.


The Hobnobber Program provides college aged young people the opportunity to develop themselves. For one year, College aged participants are subsidized to attend The Hayek Group dinner meetings, where they can benefit by networking with the many interesting attendees. Hobnobbers receive a Hayekian Education (to understand why freedom is fair and fruitful) and a financial literacy education (so they exit with a short term and long term financial plan).


The discussion group meets monthly by zoom giving those who attend an opportunity to discuss some issue of interest.

Get Involved!

The Hayek Group is operated by an all-volunteer board, and implements its programs entirely through donations. To support our monthly dinner meetings, you can become a Hayek Group member. Member donations primarily fund the travel and honorariums of speakers who come from outside Northern Nevada. To support our financial education program for youth, you can become an educational Ambassador at a donation level of $2500 or more. Or, you can make a donation of a lesser amount. To support a Hayek Group Hobnobber, you can make a $300 charitable donation.


The Hayek Group has funded the Ramsey curriculum for some classrooms in 13 schools in Northern Nevada that are not in the Washoe County School District.

One big accomplishment was the negotiation and funding of a 7 year site license of the Dave Ramsey Foundations in Personal Finance curriculum for the Washoe County School District. This ensures up to 5000 seniors per year will have access to quality financial education. The curriculum is also being used in innovative ways, like in a 9th grade math class to motivate students to learn how to use percentages. The current effort is to extend the efforts in these and other Northern Nevada schools to reach more students. Site licenses are the best way to reach all students at the lowest cost. They must be negotiated and funded one school at a time.

Meet the Hayek Group Team

The Hayek Group Board is a dedicated group of volunteers who take on various roles in order to execute the activities that pursue the mission of The Hayek Group.
Mark Pingle
Mark Pingle

Mark Pingle is a professor of economics, a member of the University of Nevada, Reno Department of Economics since 1990. He received his B.S. degree in economics from Southern Oregon State College in 1983. He received his M.A. in 1984 and Ph.D. in Economics in 1988, both from the University of Southern California. He appreciates the Hayek Group's commitment to promoting freedom and the prosperity it brings, including the prosperity the Hayek Group promotes by helping young people learn how to effectively manage their finances.

Vas Kamyshanov
Vas Kamyshanov

Award-winning business leader with 15 years of marketing and sales experience. Developed strategies that resulted in $1 billion in sales for Nestle, Kraft, SAB Miller.

Tracy Turner
Tracy Turner

Tracy Peterson Turner, PhD, has been working in the charitable realm in the Reno, Nevada, area since 2003. Through membership in a local service club, Tracy learned first hand about the significant support nonprofits provide in the northern Nevada area. Tracy worked for 10 years with the community foundation—first as Program Officer and then as Chief Philanthropy Officer, where she got to know hundreds of nonprofits and their work. Now as a philanthropic advisor to individuals and private foundation trustees, she is a resource to donors as she helps them make wise giving choices.
Tracy holds a PhD in 20th Century American Literature from University of North Texas, a Masters in English Literature, and a Bachelors in English—both earned at Texas A&M University-Commerce. She is a veteran of the United States Air Force. She enjoys cycling, hiking, traveling, and exploring.

Kellie R. George
Kellie R. George

Kellie George is a certified human behavior consultant and a certified John C. Maxwell leadership speaker and trainer; she brings over 34 years of experience in public speaking, business development, sales, marketing, and business management. She specializes in helping companies retain their talent with internal development. Kellie is actively involved in multiple community organizations, and provides leadership training and financial education to youth and adults.

Parky May
Parky May

Parky May is the Vice President and Grand High Poohbah of Bergdahl Associates, a small, woman-owned business in Reno that specializes in aerospace and industrial adhesives, sealants, dispensing systems and cleaners. He is a national expert on both sticking important things like airplane parts together, and getting them unstuck again later, when the need arises. With over 50 years’ experience as a manager and leader, small business owner, general contractor, Red Cross disaster services volunteer and consultant to industry and non-profits, he brings to Hayek a passion for service, a commitment to excellence, and a dedication to the importance of financial literacy as a stepping stone to success. In addition to Hayek, Parky is a patron of the arts, actively involved with the Reno Philharmonic Orchestra and Artown. He has an AAS Degree in Computer Sciences from American River College.

Jonathan Breiter
Jonathan Breiter

Jonathan is a professor of business at University of Nevada, Reno, who focuses on teaching entrepreneurship, marketing, and management. He has 35 years of business experience. He worked on advertising campaigns for Wendy’s hamburgers and Yoplait yogurt, among many others. At Hasbro, he launched Barney and Elmo, along with about 150 other products. He left Hasbro to start his own company which he later sold to an international conglomerate that he joined. At that company, he helped launch Teletubbies, Pokemon, and SpongeBob Squarepants. Today, is greatest joy and interest is teaching.

Emily Mimnaugh
Emily Mimnaugh

Emily Mimnaugh is a Reno-based attorney. In 2019 she opened the Nevada Office for a non-profit law firm dedicated to defending fundamental freedoms including religious liberty and other civil rights. Before coming to Nevada, she practiced law overseas with a focus on debt and equity capital markets. Emily grew up in Northern California where she became a lifelong tennis fan and supporter of traditional jazz. She received her B.A. from Yale University, her M.Phil. from the University of Cambridge and her J.D. from the University of Michigan. Go Blue!

John Phillips
John Phillips

John Phillips volunteers his audio-visual expertise to the Hayek Group, allowing those who cannot make dinner meetings to still examine the talks of the many great dinner meeting speakers.


The following are excerpts from two emails sent by Tom Motherway in mid November 2008 to a few others. These excerpts express the heart and intention of the genesis, and these still animate The Hayek Group today.

“I’ve mentioned to some of you the possibility of getting a group … together for discussion of current topics of interest to our society in economics, politics, education, finance, social mores, etc. My interest is to hear intelligent voices from varying backgrounds with the common interest in the values upon which our country was founded, liberty and democracy. All this, in an atmosphere of comradery and fun. … The common link is a desire to see the country governed properly.”

“Our nation’s future is in grave danger given the one-sidedness of the educational establishment and the fourth estate. This coupled with the educational level of the average voter does not augur well for our country, children and grandchildren. Recall the Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times.”

“The majority have responded affirmatively in favor of regular periodic get-togethers to discuss topics of interest … . I therefore propose a regular mid-week early dinner group …. We could agree on different times, places and formats if the discussion concept has legs after the first couple of meetings. Our “interesting times” present a wealth of opportunity to learn, debate and discuss important issues of the day. The group itself brings a wealth of experience to the effort. … Best to all,”

Tom Motherway

Join Our Monthly Dinner

There are still other students in other high schools to reach in Northern Nevada, plus we are seeking to move into enhancing the financial fitness of college aged students (though not necessarily in college). Consequently, we still need you to join our effort.