Lake County/Eustis Incubator Welcomes Wall Yak as Second Client

Well-known Lake County entrepreneurs Tom & Dawn Hofmeister sign up to scale their newest endeavor

Eustis, Fla. (March 21, 2024) – Tom and Dawn Hofmeister are no strangers to building a business. In 2013, the Tavares Chamber of Commerce named Tom Hofmeister the Entrepreneur of the Year for his innovation in the Assisted Living business. And, in 2014, he was given the Lake County Community Service Award for Business/Entrepreneurship.

But when it came time to grow Wall Yak, Tom and Dawn Hofmeister’s newest company, the couple turned to the power of the UCF Business Incubation Program for mentoring and direction.

“Building a consumer-products business is a completely different experience than building companies focused on providing a local service,” Tom Hofmeister says. “Entrepreneurs need to seek help in growing their business and we’re truly looking forward to this experience working with the experts at the UCF Business Incubation Program.”

Often economic development focuses on flashy technologies, but Wall Yak provides a new type of product designed to easily showcase pictures and graphics inexpensively in a large-scale format. Plus, Wall Yak allows the consumer to switch out the photos easily.

The idea came after Tom Hofmeister placed photos of residents at the senior communities he owned.

“We were amazed at how excited everyone became after seeing their photos,
Dawn Hofmeister says. “Tom would take photos from his phone and print them out on the office copy machine and tape them down the hallway.”

That reaction pushed Tom Hofmeister to develop a system where you could showcase everyday pictures as large as they could be on any wall.

The result is a patented frame design displaying an image printed on standard 11” x 17” paper from any printer. Using the Wall Yak system, a high-resolution image can be printed and wrapped onto multiple frames and pieced together for a display as big as 230 square feet.

Wall Yak can be used for non-profits, businesses, schools and for personal use. For instance, instead of keeping a family portrait on the wall that is quickly outdated as the children grow, Wall Yak allows for customers to update their family portrait as often as they would like.

In 1980, Tom Hofmeister opened Hofmeister Design & Construction with his father to start building custom homes in Lake County. As president and CEO, the company grew to develop and build multi-family, mixed-use and boutique commercial projects. In 2015, Tom and Dawn Hofmeister opened Elderfire Lodges, a strategic, senior-living development company for building and operating Assisted Living and Memory Care communities.

“We’re thrilled to have the Hofmeisters work with the UCF Business Incubation Program since they have such a successful track record of being an entrepreneur,” says Wendy Taylor, site manager, Eustis/Lake County Business Incubator. “We’re looking forward to helping them truly grow this business throughout the United States.”

Companies interested in applying for the UCF Business Incubator in Eustis can visit  Companies interested in meeting with the UCF Small Business Development Center can learn more by visiting




UCF Business Incubation Program: Alan Byrd, 407-415-8470,

Wall Yak, Tom & Dawn Hofmeister, 352-589-2700, Dawn@WallYak .com

About the UCF Business Incubation Program: The University of Central Florida Business Incubation Program is a community resource that provides early-stage companies with the tools, training and infrastructure to become financially stable, high growth/impact enterprises. Since 1999, this award-winning program has provided vital business development resources resulting in over 300 local startup companies reaching their potential faster and graduating into the community where they continue to grow and positively impact the local economy.

With nine facilities throughout the region, the UCF Business Incubation Program is an economic development partnership between the University of Central Florida, the Corridor, Lake, Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Volusia Counties, and the cities of Eustis, Kissimmee, Orlando and Winter Springs. In 2022, current incubator clients supported over 1200 employees and generated over $120 million in revenue.  Nineteen companies graduated from the program and remained in the local community. For more information, visit

About Wall Yak: Give everyone something to Yak about. Wall Yak is a lifestyle product designed to inspire celebration in the environment of your home or office. Imagine your family, friends, last vacation, pets or that huge celebration in full view. Wall Yak is the first product of its kind that encourages the use of photos from your phone to be displayed on your walls as large as you desire, changed as often as you like. Your life changes fast and now your walls can also. For more information, please visit