Our Alumni

2019 Alumni Entrepreneurs of the Year 


Larry and Caryl Abdo graduated from the Carlson School in 1969, beginning a legendary entrepreneurial partnership that has spanned more than 40 businesses (so far!) and engaged all four of their children.  For the past decade, the Abdos have invited students and spouses to their historic Nicollet Island Inn for candid conversations on managing their personal relationships while being married to an entrepreneur.  They have also served as Entrepreneurs-in-Residence for the Holmes Center, regularly speaking to classes and advising students and alumni on their ventures.  The Abdos will be recognized at Founders Day on May 7th.


University of Minnesota – Alumni Entrepreneur of the Year Award


2006            Gary Holmes, CSM Corporation

2007            Robert Stephens, Geek Squad

2008            Tim & Valerie Doherty, Doherty Employment

2009            Joel Ronning, Digital River

2010            Steve Flagg, Quality Bicycle Products

2011            Monica Nassif, Caldrea

2012            Bob Coughlin, Cross Telecom

2013            Greg Frankenfield, Magenic

2014            Steve Eilertson, Grain Millers

2015            Joel Schleicher, Presidio

2016            Nazie Eftekhari, HealthEZ

2017            Marcia Page, Varde Partners

2018            David Meyer, Titan Machinery

2019            Larry & Caryl Abdo, Abdo Market House

2020            Lee Jones, Rebiotix & Inlet Medical


University of Minnesota – Student Entrepreneur of the Year Award


2015            Tyler Ebert - Adrenacard

2016            Elise Maxwell - OvaWoman

2017            Jamie Glover - Asiya

2018            Kate Kuehl - Mobineo

2019            Peter Schultze - Plyo

2020            TBD - announced May 5th


University of Minnesota – Faculty Entrepreneur of the Year Award


2014            Steve Spruth - Carlson School of Management

2015            Barry Kudrowitz - School of Design

2016            Jaio Luo - Carlson School of Management

2017            Art Erdman & Will Durfee - College of Science & Engineering

2018            Carla Pavone - Carlson School of Management

2019            Fred Rose - Acara

2020            TBD - announced May 5th