Amy Simmons

A native of Ann Arbor, Michigan, Amy Simmons originally wanted to go into medicine. While in school and after, she worked at Steve's Ice Cream, launching new stores in Manhattan and Coconut Grove, Florida until it was sold. Simmons then decided to start her own company where she could focus on the quality, community and customer service values that first lured her into the ice cream business. Finding Texas most hospitable, she opened Amy's Ice Creams in 1984 in Austin. Based on the philosophy of "making people's day", Amy's Ice Creams has grown to 15 stores in three cities. The success of Amy's is known worldwide from featured articles in Inc., Southern Living, Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, People, Fast Company, and features on Food Network, ABC and multiple reference university textbooks. In 2003, Simmons founded Choose Austin First, an alliance of locally owned businesses dedicated to fostering and promoting the city's unique lifestyle and sense of community. In 2007 she founded Phil's Ice House, a burger concept, which also thrives on the concept of being a gathering and giving place for the community. Her deep-rooted concern for community motivated her to run for and be elected to Westlake Hills City Council Place 3 in May 2007 where she served as Mayor Pro Tem. Simmons attended the University of Texas and received her Option II M.B.A. in 1992, where she received the Dean's Award.