19 Entrepreneur Of The Yr. Finalists Hail From MN

19 Entrepreneur Of The Yr. Finalists Hail From MN

Minnesota business leaders dominate this year’s crop of Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards for the Upper Midwest region.

Ernst & Young on Wednesday announced 25 finalists for the 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year awards in the Upper Midwest region—and the majority of business leaders vying for the award are from Minnesota.
The annual awards program—now in its 28th year—recognizes entrepreneurs who excel in the areas of innovation, financial performance, and personal commitment to their companies and communities. Business leaders from Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, and the Dakotas are included in the Upper Midwest competition.
The companies that the finalists lead collectively brought in more than $2.5 billion in revenue last year and provided more than 6,500 jobs, according to Ernst & Young.
Of this year’s 25 finalists, here are the 19 Minnesota-based leaders and their companies:

  • Amy Nelson, Otsego-based home health care services provider Accurate Home Care
  • William York, St. Paul-based AgriBank, which specializes in funding for the agricultural industry
  • Edward Cameron, St. Louis Park-based Appliance Recycling Centers of America, Inc.
  • David Kristal, St. Paul-based Augeo Affinity Marketing
  • Jon Carlson, Minneapolis-based engineering firm Braun Intertec Corporation
  • Thomas Ahern and Robert Coughlan, North Mankato-based publishing firm Capstone
  • Matthew Dornquast, Minneapolis-based software firm Code 42 Software
  • Michael Lacey, Plymouth-based management and technology consulting firm Digineer, Inc.
  • Jennifer Smith, Burnsville-based office supplies and furniture distributor Innovative Office Solutions LLC
  • Zach Halmstad and Chip Pearson, Minneapolis-based management software firm JAMF Software
  • Jim Loffler, Bloomington-based business technology and office services provider Loffler Companies, Inc.
  • Justin Hall, Woodbury-based freight and logistics solutions provider Logistics Planning Services
  • Scott Litman and Dan Mallin, Minneapolis-based marketing and technology firm Magnet 360
  • Josh Hanson and Krista O'Malley, St. Paul-based retail consultancy Make Retail
  • Tashitaa Tufaa, Fridley-based school bus transportation company Metropolitan Transportation Network, Inc.
  • Brad Goskowicz, St. Cloud-based biological manufacturer Microbiologics
  • John Puckett and John Soranno, Minneapolis-based Punch Pizza
  • Brenton Hayden, Minnetonka-based property management company Renters Warehouse
  • Mike Derheim, Minneapolis-based interactive technology firm The Nerdery

To view the full list of finalists, click here.
Derheim, Hayden, Halmstad and Pearson, Tufaa, and Dornquast were all Minnesota entrepreneurs who were also named finalists in last year’s regional competition but didn’t go on to win the regional award.
Additionally, Dornquast of Code42 and Nelson of Accurate Home Care will be panelists at Twin Cities Business’ “Emerging Growth Forum” on May 13. The two will join three other local corporate leaders in discussing best practices when growing a new company to scale.  

A panel of judges will select this year’s regional winners, who will be named on June 11 at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Minneapolis. Regional award winners will then go on to compete at the national level. National winners will be announced at an awards gala in Palm Springs, California, on November 15.

Twin Cities Business will have in-depth coverage of the 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year award winners in its August issue. To read about last year’s winners, click here.