Ernst & Young LLP (EY US) today announced the finalists for the Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2021 Gulf Coast Area Award. Now in its 35th year, the Entrepreneur Of The Year program honors audacious business leaders whose ambition, courage and ingenuity help catapult us from now to next and beyond. These 18 entrepreneurs were selected as finalists by a panel of independent judges.
Award winners will be announced during a special virtual celebration on August 4 and will join the ranks of a lifelong community of esteemed Entrepreneur Of The Year alumni from around the world.
The 2021 Gulf Coast Area finalists are:
- Ray Vitulli, CEO, Allegiance Bank, Houston
- Ryan McGrath, CEO & President, Asset Living, Houston
- Scott Eckert, President & CEO, BRIANNAS Fine Salad Dressings, Brenham, Texas
- Jason Herin, Owner & President, CBS Rentals, Spring, Texas
- Shaun Noorian, Founder & CEO, Empower Pharmacy, Houston
- Timothy Neal, CEO & Co-Founder, GoExpedi, Houston
- Brian Cameron, CEO, Saqib Dhanani, President, and Zee Makhani, CTO, HIREtech, Houston
- Christi Bond, President & CEO and Ragan Bond, Co-Founder & President of Marketing, Independence Coffee Company, LLC, Brenham, Texas
- Cliffe Killam, CEO & President, Killam Development, Laredo, Texas
- Sam Thigpen, CEO, Sapphire Gas Solutions, Conroe, Texas
- Danny Signorelli, CEO, The Signorelli Company, The Woodlands, Texas
- Dan Purvis, CEO and Tim Carroll, President & COO, Velentium, Katy, Texas
- Brandon Landry, CEO & Founder, Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux, Baton Rouge, La.
- Ting Qiao, CEO, Wan Bridge, Bellaire, Texas
Entrepreneur Of The Year is one of the preeminent competitive business awards for entrepreneurs and leaders of high-growth companies. Finalists were evaluated based on six criteria: entrepreneurial leadership; talent management; degree of difficulty; financial performance; societal impact and building a values-based company; and originality, innovation and future plans. Since its launch, the program has expanded to recognize business leaders in more than 145 cities in over 60 countries throughout the world.
“This year’s finalists are the next class in a long line of unstoppable visionaries,” said Innocent Shumba, US-West EY Private Leader. “They have been carefully selected by our independent panel of judges for their unwavering commitment to their companies, customers and communities in a year of unprecedented change. We are thrilled to share their inspiring stories this year.”
Regional award winners are eligible for consideration for the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Awards, to be announced in November at the Strategic Growth Forum®, one of the nation’s most prestigious gatherings of high-growth, market-leading companies. The Entrepreneur Of The Year National Overall Award winner will then move on to compete for the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Award in June 2022.
Entrepreneur Of The Year Award winners have exclusive, ongoing access to the experience, insight and wisdom of fellow alumni and other ecosystem members in over 60 countries — all supported by vast EY resources.
Gulf Coast Area Focus
Each year, EY US showcases successful entrepreneurs from 20 regional competitions across the United States. In 2020, eight entrepreneurs leading companies from Gulf Coast Area were selected as Entrepreneur Of The Year Award winners.
For information on the Entrepreneur Of The Year Gulf Coast Area program, please visit ey.com/us/gulfcoast_eoy.
Founded and produced by Ernst & Young LLP, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards are nationally sponsored by SAP America and the Kauffman Foundation.
In Gulf Coast Area, sponsors also include Colliers International, DLA Piper, LLC, PNC Bank, Houston Business Journal, Pierpont Communications, and SolomonEdwards.
About Entrepreneur Of The Year®
Entrepreneur Of The Year® is the world’s most prestigious business awards program for unstoppable entrepreneurs. These visionary leaders deliver innovation, growth and prosperity that transform our world. The program engages entrepreneurs with insights and experiences that foster growth. It connects them with their peers to strengthen entrepreneurship around the world. Entrepreneur Of The Year is the first and only truly global awards program of its kind. It celebrates entrepreneurs through regional and national awards programs in more than 145 cities in over 60 countries. National Overall winners go on to compete for the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ title. ey.com/us/eoy
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