Idaho Business Review: Most Influential Business Leaders

Melaleuca Executive Chairman Frank VanderSloot Named One of Idaho’s Most Influential Business Leaders

Melaleuca Executive Chairman Frank VanderSloot was recognized as one of the “50 most influential business leaders in Idaho” by the Idaho Business Review. The newspaper’s staff published a “Power List” of the most influential Idahoans on June 24, 2022, stating, “Frank VanderSloot has a keen eye for business and has demonstrated his dynamic leadership skills during his time as Melaleuca’s founder.”

The article attributes Melaleuca’s tremendous success to Frank’s leadership qualities and highlights his engagement as a business and community leader. Idaho Business Review mentions that Frank’s leadership was instrumental in Melaleuca ranking on Inc. Magazine’s list of the 500 fasting-growing, privately held companies in the country for five consecutive years. It also points out Frank’s vast contributions in the political arena and his service on the board of directors for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Over the last 37 years, Frank VanderSloot has become one of Idaho’s most successful entrepreneurs and innovators. He founded Melaleuca: The Wellness Company and led the development of the company’s 400+ health and wellness products. Under Frank’s leadership, Melaleuca has become one of America’s largest online retailers. Today, Melaleuca operates as the largest e-commerce company in Idaho, generating annual revenues over $2 billion and serving 2 million customers per month in 19 countries.

Frank also made an appearance in “100 Influential Idahoans 2015,” a book written by Idaho political analyst Randy Stapilus that was published by Ridenbaugh Press. This book contains the top 100 individuals who are “most likely to determine the direction of Idaho’s politics, public affairs, and education concerns.” The list was compiled in accordance with one’s abilities and levels of influence in the state, along with input from a wide variety of publicly involved Idahoans from the state.

Due to Frank’s ability to effect change, he ranked as the fifth most influential Idahoan, positioned right behind U.S. Representative Mike Simpson. Notably, Frank was the highest-ranked private citizen on the list of influencers.

In 2020, Frank was inducted into the Idaho Technology Council Hall of Fame. Each year, the Idaho Technology Council recognizes “the best and brightest technology and leadership talent in the state of Idaho” by highlighting business leaders who have made significant contributions to the tech community.

Living Melaleuca’s Mission of Enhancing Lives

Frank is constantly seeking opportunities to demonstrate Melaleuca’s mission of “enhancing the lives of those we touch by helping people reach their goals℠.” In 2001, Frank founded the Melaleuca Foundation as a way to reach out and enhance the lives of those most in need. While this nonprofit organization supports many noble causes, the Foundation’s signature cause is supporting a remarkable orphanage in Quito, Ecuador, that provides everything these children need. Its impact is felt all around the world.

Below are just a few examples of Frank’s contributions in his home state of Idaho to enhance lives, influence change, and do good where good is needed:

  • Frank and Belinda VanderSloot restored the historic New Sweden Schoolhouse at a cost of over $2 million, volunteering time and money into this massive restoration project. Once the 1920s schoolhouse was restored, the VanderSloots immediately donated the use of the building to the American Heritage Charter School. Today, the walls of this public school are once again filled with young students who are ready to learn.
  • Frank made an investment of over $4 million into a cheese factory in southeast Idaho that was going to be closed down by Kraft. As a result of the factory’s closure, local family farms and dairies would have shut down and been lost forever. Frank was determined not to let that happen. Through his impact investing, Frank saved the factory, installed solid management, bought new equipment, and worked with the dairymen — all at great personal sacrifice. He ultimately saved over 115 family-operated farms, most of which are still going two decades later, and more than 800 jobs.
  • Frank and Belinda donated $1 million to establish a consumer-protection fund that protects Idaho residents from abusive medical debt collection practices. Frank also championed a legislative remedy called the Idaho Patient Act, which successfully passed the 2020 Idaho legislature and was signed into law by Idaho Governor Brad Little on March 16, 2020.
  • Under Frank’s leadership, Melaleuca paid for a new youth event center at the Bonneville County fairgrounds that is used by thousands of children in eastern Idaho.
  • Frank is a benefactor for the Shepherd’s Inn Pregnancy Support Center, a resource center that provides free and confidential pregnancy and parenting support to young parents having an unplanned pregnancy.

For 30 years, Melaleuca has sponsored large-scale food drives, like Scouting for Food, by donating the resources needed to make the community aware of the service project. Melaleuca is credited with helping to bring in over 2,500 tons of food, repeatedly filling up food bank warehouses, and feeding hundreds of thousands of families.