Minnesotans dominated EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year awards on Thursday night with seven out of the eight winners hailing from the state. Ecolab CEO Doug Baker added to that, taking home the Master Entrepreneur Award.
 
Each year, EY recognizes leading CEOs and regional business leaders for their entrepreneurial prowess and notable contributions to their staff and communities. The Upper Midwest division EY’s competition includes Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Minnesota.
 
A total of 31 entrepreneurs—of which 25 were Minnesotans—were named finalists in April. The winners include:
  • Eric Timko, CEO of Blue Belt Technologies (Plymouth)
  • Dennis Brazier, CEO of Central Boiler/Altoz (Greenbush)
  • Kurt Kottke, president; Kory Kottke, senior vice president; and Kyle Kottke, general manager of Kottke Trucking (Buffalo Lake)
  • Kris Kowalski Christiansen and Mary Anne Kowalski, COO and owner of Kowalski’s Companies (Woodbury)
  • Susan Schneider, president of Plus Relocation (Minneapolis)
  • Don Rachel, CEO of Rachel Contracting, Inc. (St. Michael)
  • Jim Kelly, founder and CEO of ThreeBridge Solutions, LLC (Minneapolis)
  • Randy Newman, president and CEO of Alerus (Grand Forks, ND)
All of the entrepreneurs will be entered into EY’s Entrepreneur Of The Year Overall National Award program, which will take place on November 19. Winners of that then move on to compete for the World Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in Monaco during June of next year.
 
Minnesotans dominated last year’s Upper Midwest competition as well. A list of those winners can be found here.

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