Several local entrepreneurs joined the ranks of the best of the best at the Spirit of the Entrepreneur Awards earlier this month.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary, the black tie gala event featured a look back at its history, including the unveiling of the Legacy Entrepreneur Award, selected from past winners and recognizing entrepreneurs who have sustained high levels of innovation, growth and success.
Laura & William Land, founders of Marketplace Valet and Javier Vasquez, CEO of fast-food restaurant chain, Miguel’s Jr. were awarded the Legacy Entrepreneur Award.
The Spirit of the Entrepreneur award recipients are:
- Modern Pro Solutions, Bobby Tetsch – Chino – DISTRIBUTION/WHOLESALE ENTREPRENEUR & BEST OF THE BEST AWARD
- Elizabeth’s Insurance Services, Inc., Elizabeth Rodriguez – Moreno Valley– FINANCIAL SERVICES ENTREPRENEUR
- Koury Engineering& Testing, Inc., Michele Shams – Chino – GENERAL ENTREPRENEUR & MARY ANNE FOX TOP FEMALE ENTREPRENEUR
- The Ollie World, Hindi Zeidman – Rancho Cucamonga – MANUFACTURING ENTREPRENEUR
- A&G Infusion Nursing Services, Angelica Maria Gonzalez – Moreno Valley – SERVICE-BASED ENTREPRENEUR B2B
- NextGen Flight Academy Inc., Brandon Martini – Riverside – SERVICE-BASED ENTREPRENEUR B2C
- StarNav LLC, Joshua Morales – Riverside – SMALL/EMERGING ENTERPRISE
Another highlight of the annual event is the Garner Holt Student Fast Pitch Competition. Student finalists delivered 90-second pitches about their venture ideas to the audience and were critiqued on their overall preparation, poise and professional presentation. The top three pitches were recognized and the top student walked away with a $4,000 prize. The fast pitch, which involves students from Cal State San Bernardino, is sponsored by local entrepreneur Garner Holt of Garner Holt Productions and City National Bank.
The top 3 finishers were:
- Sadé Harper – HeadZZZup
- Jennifer Dring – Greenfills
- Juliana Garcia – Pumps and Curls
A portion of the proceeds from the Spirit of the Entrepreneur event benefit the Spirit of the Entrepreneur Scholarship established by Dr. Mike Stull, Director of Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship at California State University, San Bernardino.