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College Alums Honored as Entrepreneurs of the Year


Two University of Tennessee College of Business Administration alumni recently were selected as Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year 2008 recipients.

Robert BaronRandy BoydRobert Baron, chairman, president, CEO, and founder of Baron Group of Companies, and Randy Boyd, president and CEO of Radio Systems Corporation, were named Entrepreneurs of the Year in the Alabama/Georgia/Tennessee region. Considered the most prestigious business award for entrepreneurs, the Entrepreneur of the Year (EOY) awards recognize the pioneers and innovators who excel at growing and sustaining market-leading businesses.

Both Baron and Boyd received bachelor’s degrees in business administration from the university in 1968 and 1979, respectively. They also have been involved in the College of Business Administration’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Center.

Entrepreneur of the Year regional winners were selected by an independent judging panel made up of regional business, academic, and community leaders. Over 50 submittals were narrowed down to 27 finalists in six categories. The finalists then were interviewed by a panel of judges comprised of past EOY award winners and successful business leaders. The judging criteria included a thorough assessment of recent financial performance; strategic direction and product or service innovation; company leadership including personal integrity, values, and key employee initiatives; and community involvement.

Twenty-two years ago, Ernst & Young created the Entrepreneur of the Year awards as a way to identify, honor, and support outstanding business leaders. The program has expanded to recognize business leaders in over 135 cities in 50 countries throughout the world. Regional award winners are eligible for consideration in the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2008 national program, November 2008.

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