In its 35th year, EY honors unstoppable entrepreneurial creators and disrupters in Heartland.
Ernst & Young LLP (EY US) is pleased to announce the winners of the Entrepreneur Of The Year® Heartland Award. Entrepreneur Of The Year is one of the preeminent competitive business awards for entrepreneurs and leaders of high-growth companies. The Heartland program celebrates entrepreneurs from Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota. This group of audacious entrepreneurial leaders was selected by an independent judging panel made up of previous award winners, leading CEOs, investors and other regional business leaders. Heartland award winners were unveiled during a special virtual celebration on Tuesday, July 27, 2021 to honor and celebrate these business leaders who test the limits of what’s possible and find ways to catapult us from now to next and beyond.
“EY is proud to celebrate these unstoppable entrepreneurs and welcome them into our global Entrepreneur Of The Year alumni community,” said Dominic Iannazzo, EY Heartland Entrepreneur Of The Year Program co-director. “Despite the unprecedented challenges of the past year, these heroic leaders have inspired us all with their unrivaled courage, ambition and unwavering commitment to their companies, clients and communities.”
The winners for the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2021 Heartland Award are:
- Brian NeSmith | Arctic Wolf Networks, Inc. | Eden Prairie, Minnesota
- Janet Johanson | BevSource and The Lab | Little Canada, Minnesota
- Tony Miller | Bind Benefits | Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Nathan McKean | BMC Enterprises, Inc. | St. Louis, Missouri
- Jamie Candee | Edmentum | Bloomington, Minnesota
- Todd Wilkinson | Entrust Corporation | Shakopee, Minnesota
- Scott Leiendecker | KNOWiNK LLC | St. Louis, Missouri
- Nicole Atchison | PURIS | Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Tyler Lorenzen | PURIS | Minneapolis, Minnesota
- Eddie Sullivan, PhD | SAB Biotherapeutics | Sioux Falls, South Dakota
- Charlie Youakim | Sezzle | Minneapolis, Minnesota
Nominees 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.
Regional award winners are eligible for consideration for the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Awards, to be announced in November 2021 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 become lifetime members of a global, multi-industry community of entrepreneurs, with exclusive, ongoing access to the experience, insight and wisdom of program alumni and other ecosystem members in over 60 countries — all supported by vast EY resources. Since 1986, the Entrepreneur Of The Year program has recognized more than 10,000 U.S. executives.
Founded and produced by Ernst & Young LLP, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards are nationally sponsored by SAP America and the Kauffman Foundation. In Heartland, sponsors also include Colliers International, Padilla Co., PNC Bank, SALO LLC, Twin Cities Business and Donnelley Financial Solutions.
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. Visit ey.com/us/eoy.
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