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Donald F. Kuratko
Johnson Center on Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Sue Artmeier
Johnson Center on Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Samantha S. Uslan
Johnson Center on Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Last modified: Monday, October 16, 2006

Second IU Entrepreneurial Awards of Distinction recognize Indiana’s best entrepreneurial companies

Winners to be announced Thursday from among 68 finalists

Oct. 16, 2006

EDITORS: A complete list of finalists follows this release. Winners will be announced at a dinner on Thursday (Oct. 19) and another news release will follow on Friday morning (Oct. 20).

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Sixty-eight Indiana companies are finalists in a program from Indiana University's Kelley School of Business that recognizes emerging companies for their growth, innovation, spirit and social enterprise. The IU Entrepreneurial Awards of Distinction will be presented to a select number of these businesses on Thursday (Oct. 19).

The Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the Kelley School will host a dinner Thursday at the Indiana Roof Ballroom, 140 W. Washington St., in Indianapolis, recognizing the finalists and naming the winners in each of several categories. More than 140 companies applied for the award with nearly half of the 68 finalist companies being first time applicants.

Richard "Dick" Johnson, chairman of Johnson Ventures, Inc. and founder and president of the former Bigfoot Industries, is the second recipient of the William L. Haeberle Entrepreneurial Legacy Award.

Print-Quality Photo

"These entrepreneurial companies are the very fabric of the future for the state of Indiana. They are vital to the state's effort to develop an entrepreneurial culture," said Donald F. Kuratko, executive director of the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation and the Jack M. Gill Chair of Entrepreneurship. "They also are important contributors to the communities where they are located. They've worked hard to make a success of their business ventures, and we feel that they deserve the special recognition that this program provides."

To be eligible for the awards, companies had to be founded by the 2003 fiscal year, be a public or private corporation with a proprietorship or partnership located in Indiana, and have revenues of more than $1 million. Eight of the finalist companies in the Growth Category have experienced 100 percent or more growth since 2003. Altogether, the companies being honored employ more than 6,000 people in Indiana and reported total revenue of $850,832,600.

The Center also will honor Richard "Dick" Johnson, chairman of Johnson Ventures, Inc. and founder and president of the former Bigfoot Industries, as the second recipient of the William L. Haeberle Entrepreneurial Legacy Award. The award commemorates the lasting mark of Johnson's business creation in the state. The award is given in honor of Haeberle, IU professor emeritus of management and an advisor to scores of Indiana entrepreneurs for nearly 60 years.

The Indiana Entrepreneurial Awards of Distinction recognizes finalists and winners in four categories.

  • The Growth Award recognizes companies with at least 35 percent growth over a two-year period.
  • The Spirit Award honors companies for their high standards in risk-taking and perseverance through various mistakes and obstacles.
  • The Innovation Award goes to companies that pioneered new systems, products or best practices to adapt to the changing business climate.
  • The Social Enterprise Award recognizes non-profit companies with social missions which have adopted entrepreneurial attributes.

An outside blue ribbon panel of business consultants and successful entrepreneurs conducted the judging. The certified public accounting firm of Katz, Sapper & Miller audited and verified financial statements for the finalists in the growth category, requiring companies to demonstrate how they achieved their growth.

Partners for this year's IU Entrepreneurial Awards of Distinction are LaSalle National Bank, Katz, Sapper & Miller, IU Research & Technology Corp., the Indiana Venture Center; Monument Advisors, NASDAQ and Pathologists Associated Labs.

For more information regarding the program and the Johnson Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, visit the Center's web site at or call 812-855-4248.

Here are the finalists, listed alphabetically with their location and the award category for which they are being recognized:

  • Ace Mortgage Funding, LLC, Indianapolis, Growth
  • Advantis Medical, Inc., Greenwood, Growth
  • ANGEL Learning, Indianapolis, Growth, Spirit and Innovation
  • Baker Hill, Carmel, Innovation
  • Benefit Associates, Inc., Indianapolis, Spirit
  • BeniComp Advantage, Inc., Fort Wayne, Innovation
  • Coalition for Homelessness Intervention & Prevention (CHIP), Indianapolis, Social
  • Columbus Enterprise Development Corporation (CEDC), Columbus, Social
  • Community Education Coalition, Columbus, Social
  • Cornea Research Foundation of America, Indianapolis, Social
  • Cornerstone Information Systems, Bloomington, Spirit
  • Crew Property Improvement Specialists, Carmel, Growth
  • Crown E.S.A., Portage, Spirit
  • Daman Products Co., Inc., Mishawaka, Spirit
  • Damar Services, Indianapolis, Social
  • Damien Center, Indianapolis, Social
  • Deborah Wood Associates Healthcare Communications Group, Carmel, Spirit and Innovation
  • elmagine Technology Group, Inc., Indianapolis, Growth
  • Electronic Communication Systems, Inc., Bloomington, Spirit
  • Elwood Staffing Services, Inc., Columbus, Growth
  • Employment Plus, Bloomington, Growth
  • ExactTarget, Indianapolis, Growth
  • Family Service Association, Bloomington, Social
  • Focus Surgery, Inc., Indianapolis, Innovation
  • Fusion Alliance, Indianapolis, Innovation
  • Griffin Analytical Technologies, LLC, West Lafayette, Growth and Innovation
  • Harlan Bakeries, Inc., Avon, Growth, Spirit and Innovation
  • Healthx, Indianapolis, Spirit and Innovation
  • Home Reserve, Fort Wayne, Spirit and Innovation
  • Hull & Knarr, LLP, Greenwood, Growth
  • Iasta, Carmel, Growth, Spirit and Innovation
  • Imaginestics, LLC, West Lafayette, Innovation
  • Indiana Speed Football, Inc., Indianapolis, Spirit
  • Indianapolis Signworks, Inc., Indianapolis, Innovation
  • Information in Place, Inc., Bloomington, Innovation
  • Interactive Intelligence, Inc., Indianapolis, Innovation
  • IT Solutions, Inc., Indianapolis, Growth
  • Just Marketing International, Zionsville, Growth
  • LaBov & Beyond, Inc., Fort Wayne, Spirit
  • LHP Software, Columbus, Growth
  • Marketing Informatics, Indianapolis, Growth
  • MediaSauce, Carmel, Growth and Spirit
  • Midwest Mole, Inc., Indianapolis, Spirit
  • Midwest Tube Mills, Inc., Madison, Spirit
  • MillerWhite, LLC, Terre Haute, Spirit
  • MSP Aviation, Inc., Bloomington, Growth
  • Never Too Late, Inc., Indianapolis, Social
  • Noble Marketing Group, Cicero, Spirit
  • Oak Street Funding, LLC, Carmel, Innovation
  • Officescape, Inc., Lafayette, Innovation
  • Pac-Van, Inc., Indianapolis, Spirit
  • PreferredPartner, Indianapolis, Innovation
  • Pro Winds, Bloomington, Spirit
  • Productive Resources, Columbus, Spirit
  • ProSolv CardioVascular, Indianapolis, Innovation
  • ProTrans International, Inc., Indianapolis, Growth
  • Quadraspec, Inc., West Lafayette, Innovation
  • RoundAbout Madison, Madison, Spirit
  • Senex Services Corp., Indianapolis, Innovation
  • T2 Systems, Indianapolis, Spirit & Innovation
  • Team Quality Services, Inc., Auburn, Spirit
  • That's Good HR, Inc., Indianapolis, Growth
  • The Haelan Group, Indianapolis, Spirit and Innovation
  • Timmy Foundation, Indianapolis, Social
  • Total Benefits, LLC, Indianapolis, Spirit
  • TruPay Corporation, Mishawaka, Spirit
  • Unique Window & Door, Indianapolis, Growth and Spirit
  • YMCA Indy SwimFit, Indianapolis, Social