The Complete Story of RockinGrandmaMusic & Larraine Segil


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From board room executive to Rockin Grandma Music, Larraine Segil has a wide variety of interests, expertise and passions. Learn more about her and why you and your children will love her stories, music, games, and more.

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The Complete Story of RockinGrandmaMusic & Larraine Segil

  1. 1. Larraine SegilThe Story of RockinGrandmaMusic – & the Creation of Sam, The Broken Robot and The Pretend FamilyShe walked onto the stage – dressed as Sam, The Broken Robot – and began charming the 100 toddlersand their moms and caregivers in the audience right away. She knew just how to do that – asRockinGrandmaMusic, grandmother to four adorable little boys aged 4 months to 5 years, great auntand godmother to many more little girls and boys, and mentor to young women worldwide – LarraineSegil has capped her ever-changing career with a most unlikely passion. She is the embodiment of atoddler’s dream – the creator of music, songs, stories and characters that make children laugh, learn andlong for more.It didn’t start there. Born and raised in South Africa – the world of acting and music was always part ofLarraine’s life. She studied as a dramatic actress while at high school, was taught piano and dance by afamily already renowned in the art of classical music and opera, but took the traditional route ofbecoming a school teacher of Latin and English to 6th-12th graders. That was what was expected of herby her family in the conservative and paternalistic world that was South Africa in the 1960’s. HoweverLarraine was not one to be pigeonholed. She graduated high school very young (16) and graduatedcollege and graduate school at 18. Teaching in a high school although fun, was not going to be the endof her career. She taught Latin to Law Students at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg andthen switched into becoming a law student there herself. All the while, her dream was to have asuccessful career along with a family with six children of her own.As fate would have it, she married, and with her husband Clive, left to live first in Canada (Toronto)where their only child James, was born, and then after a few more years back in South Africa, theyemigrated to Los Angeles permanently in 1974.It was a challenging few years – working at night selling dental equipment through telemarketing from awarehouse in a dingy part of the city, helping her husband get settled in his career as an orthopedicsurgeon and working for him in his office, as well as raising their son and trying to make friends, with nolocal family to rely on. They also tried to have more children. Fertility intervention or adoption wereboth unsuccessful and after losing five pregnancies you can imagine the emotional toll this took.Nonetheless, Larraine continued her law school education at Southwestern University and graduatedwith her JD in 1979. She passed the bar (the first time – and said if she hadn’t, she is not sure she couldhave gone through that stressful situation again). Working as a litigation and then corporate lawyer wasnot fun for Larraine. In fact she couldn’t wait to leave that profession – and soon became anentrepreneur joining with other colleagues to start a financial services company. Learning her businessskills from that experience, Larraine was soon onto other entrepreneurial endeavors, beginning a healthcare company, raising venture capital, and growing and selling out of that business, then, after obtainingan MBA at the only school on the west coast at that time offering an executive MBA, she became CEO ofan aerospace advanced materials distribution company to both electronics and aerospace industries, acompany that she eventually turned around and sold.Her career began to expand exponentially, as shegave lectures on her developing expertise in Strategic Alliances, honed by her own business experience,and soon she was invited to become a lecturer at the Caltech Executive Education program where forthe next 24 years she taught senior executives about how to create, implement and add value from Contact information: Email: and
  2. 2. Larraine Segilstrategic and tactical alliances with customers, suppliers, across internal silos of the same organizationand a multitude of other structures – advising the Global 1000 and Fortune 100 companies acrossmultiple industries. Clients at the C-level included IBM, Intel, HP, Cisco, Juniper, Kraft, McDonalds,Disney, Blue Cross, Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, and many more of the world leaders in business.Larraine created the first global technology executives network,WorldTEN which she ran for 5 years,including CEO’s of technology companies from Asia, Africa, The Americas and Europe. And so herconsulting practice began to grow.Larraine productized her consulting services with on line distance learning programs, live televisionprograms on global management, alliances and leadership. In addition she created videos, as well asjust-in-time on –line instant advice series, as well as authoring 5 books published by leading publisherslike Random House, Times Books, John Wiley and Sons, and AMACOM on alliances, leadership andmetrics including a sixth book which was a novel, ‘Belonging’ published by Penguin Books. Appearing asa regular commentator on mergers and acquisitions on CNN, Fox and other major networks, Larrainewas profiled in Business Week, Fortune, Fast Company and Forbes among many other magazines.Finally in 2003 she merged her consulting firm, by then the leading boutique firm in Alliances consulting,into Vantage Partners, and became a full owner staying on to growthe firm.In 2006 her daughter-in-lawand two niecesall became pregnant. Although she was not destined to have more of her own children,she decided that she would not let anything come between her and the next generation of childrencoming into her family. By January 1, 2007she completed the process of leaving her consulting firm andsold out completely. Her grandchildren and grand nieces and nephews became her priority. She did,however, remain engaged in other business activities that allowed her the flexibility to be an involvedgrandmother and godmother as well as active business woman. During that time she began serving onthe board of a Fortune 1000 company – Frontier Communications, which is now a Fortune 300. Larraineserved on Audit, Nominating and Governance and Compensation until the present time (6.5 years)through the transformation of the company in tripling its size.In 2007 she turned her attention to another important appointment to the board of the World HealthOrganization Tropical Diseases Group in Geneva Switzerland – where she has served for the past threeyears. Along with other board positions ( UCLA Entrepreneurs Board, Board of the Premier WomenCEO’s Group Committee of 200, and incoming chair of its Foundation Board) Larraine filled her timegiving back – setting up two foundations for up-and-coming young women in business – The LarraineSegil Strategic Alliance Foundation for a female JDMBA Student at the Drucker School of Managementand Southwestern School of Law, and the Pepperdine Presidential Key Executive Program Larraine SegilScholarshipat Pepperdine University Business School (where Larraine obtained her MBA in 1984).In her spare time she and her husband created an organic urban farm, raising goats, chickens, quail,tilapia and 300 organic fruit trees, and Larraine began making goat cheese (camembert, ricotta, chevre,feta and yoghurt) supplying friends and family and select chefs for their own use as well as multiplejams, marmalades and relishes. She also wrote two online Cookbooks.But that was not creative enoughfor her. Contact information: Email: and
  3. 3. Larraine SegilShe spends quite a bit of time driving her grandchildren and since Larraine has been a story teller mostof her life, during their rides she plays I-spy games, sings songs and tells stories to her grandsons. InFebruary 2011 she decided to learn to play the guitar so she could play for her grandchildren. Her guitarplaying came to an abrupt halt when a spontaneous song popped into her head and she turned back tothe piano – a more familiar instrument – and started composing music with her guitar teacher MichaelLyn, to keep up with the stories she was creating for her grandchildren – and so RockinGrandmaMusicwas born.Early on, Michael Lyn and Robert E. Longley, the sound engineer working with Larraine torecord their music, came up with some interesting sounds, which they all agreed sounded like a brokenRobot.And so the character, Sam, The Broken Robot, was born. Larraine created a Pretend Family, ofcourse, with grandparents who live on an urban organic farm. They became the perfect foil for her toteach little ones about sharing, being kind to animals, living a healthy active life and more.Life is busy – Larraine is now giving shows to toddlers and their moms at a variety of locations. In herGrandma Role, she speaks for moms and parenting groups on ‘Living a Balanced Life – Work, Motherand Grandma-hood, Health and Fun’ as well as “Teaching Toddlers Good Habits with Music and Dance”.Her professional speaking career continues on the corporate level on alliances recent clients includeNorthrop Grumman and The Gartner Group where she gave Keynotes in 2011, and F-Secure fromFinland for whom she will keynote in Milan in 2012 among others. She has also joined the board of thePGA Business Women’s Council helping to expand the game of golf to more women, youth andminorities.Larraine is 63, and loving every minute of her reconstructed life. “Every day is precious – keepinghealthy, active, creative and challenged is my recipe for longevity. I expect to see those little boys (mygrandsons) grow up and am intending to dance at their weddings! A healthy diet, Pilates, swimming,weights and non-impact aerobics in the pool, as well as lots of classical music (Larraine and her husbandare Founders of the Music Center of Los Angeles) good friends, cooking and being with family are mymainstays for happiness. I am truly blessed and am so grateful for my life.” Contact information: Email: and