By Eric Van Meter
The McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship has named Jeremy Woan and Emre Toker recipients of the 2012 Entrepreneurial Fellows awards. The awards, which honor Arizona’s accomplished entrepreneurs and recognize their roles in the state’s economic development, will be presented at the Entrepreneur’s Grand Championship event on April 27.
“These aren’t names you’ll hear about on the radio or maybe even in local buzz, but people like Jeremy and Emre are the rock stars of Arizona’s economy,” said McGuire Center director Sherry Hoskinson. “They’re on the front lines making a difference in ways that are critical to transforming our state, and we’re the ones who are honored to be recognizing them for their achievements.”
Jeremy Woan is chairman and CEO of CyraCom International, Inc., which became the world’s second-largest provider of over-the-phone interpretation services under his leadership. The company has generated 700+ jobs in Arizona since Woan took the reins, giving it the second-highest job growth rate among southern Arizona employers. Woan is also directly responsible for building two technology companies through to IPO: one in high-performance notebook computing, one in electronic patient record systems.
Emre Toker founded two biomedical technology companies in Arizona and a third in California. One of his most recent venture involvements is Surgical Tools, a company that develops products to improve surgical outcomes for breast cancer patients. The company was among only six ventures statewide named in the first crop of Arizona Innovation Challenge awards from the Arizona Commerce Authority last year. ACA granted Surgical Tools $173,735 to help bring its products to market in 2011.
Woan and Toker will receive their awards at the McGuire Center’s Entrepreneur’s Grand Championship, which also features a competition among the 22 new venture teams in the Center’s top-ranked McGuire Entrepreneurship Program. Teams of business and law students will deliver their venture concepts and projections in rocket-pitch format and field questions from a panel of expert judges.
The Grand Championship is free and open to the public at the University of Arizona’s McClelland Hall: Learn more and plan to attend now.