McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship to Honor Innovation Champs at April 14 Public Event

April 06, 2011
Awards, student venture presentations to cap year-end celebration at Eller College of Management.

Awards,  student venture presentations to cap year-end celebration at Eller College of  Management.

TUCSON, Ariz. – April 6, 2011 – The McGuire Center for  Entrepreneurship at the University of Arizona's Eller College of Management  will honor four business and innovation leaders at its Year-end Celebration on  Thursday, April 14: John Bardis, Fred Boice, Debbie Claggett, and Rick Myers.

The Center established its annual awards program in 1985 to  recognize successful entrepreneurs as well as individuals who have gone the  extra mile to support entrepreneurship education.

2011 McGuire Center  Honorees

John Bardis: Entrepreneurial Fellow     John Bardis, alumnus of the University of Arizona, founded  MedAssets in June 1999, and has been the company's chairman, president, and CEO  since its inception. Inc. magazine named Bardis  Entrepreneur of the Year in 1995.   

Fred Boice: Entrepreneurship Hall of  Fame     Fred Boice has been active in the Tucson community for more  than 45 years and was the first person to serve two consecutive terms as  president of the Arizona Board of Regents. During his tenure, he helped develop  ways to expand access to UA education as the UA experienced record levels of  diversity, enrollment, retention, and graduation.

Debbie Claggett: Entrepreneurial  Fellow     Debbie Claggett is co-founder of the online triathlon-focused  e-store, established 20 years ago in partnership with her husband  Seton Claggett. The Claggetts also created and help fund the non-profit  organization TriSports Racing, which supports youth sports and physically  challenged athletes.

Rick Myers: Entrepreneurial Fellow     Rick Myers is chief operating officer of Critical Path  Institute, a non-profit organization working to tackle issues in drug  development. Myers has been active in building capacity and infrastructure in  Arizona and is currently serving an eight-year term on the Arizona Board of  Regents.

Supporting Top-Ranked  Education

"We're very grateful to all of this year's awards  winners for their role in advancing education and helping create an environment  where entrepreneurship and innovation can thrive," said Sherry Hoskinson,  director of the McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship. "It’s their support  and the work of many others like them that have helped make the McGuire  Entrepreneurship Program one of the top-ranked programs in the country."

In addition to the awards ceremony, the McGuire Center for  Entrepreneurship Year-end Celebration will include all of this year's 23  student teams presenting their venture concepts and plans in fast-paced  "rocket pitches" before investors, judges, and others.

The  Year-end Celebration event is free and open to the public at the University of  Arizona's McClelland Hall just north of the main campus at 1130 E. Helen St.  Student venture pitches begin at 12:30 p.m. and awards presentations begin at  4:30 p.m. For more information, visit  

The McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship is a National Model Program of the United States Association for Small Business  and Entrepreneurship and is home to the McGuire Entrepreneurship Program,  ranked the #2 public undergraduate and #1 public graduate program in the nation  by Entrepreneur magazine and The Princeton Review. Established in 1984,  it was one of the first university-based entrepreneurship centers in the  country. Today, the Center offers entrepreneurship education for any graduate  program at the University of Arizona and reaches more than 1,000 undergraduate  students every semester. With courses in business, law, science, engineering,  health, medicine, arts, and humanities, the McGuire Center advances the state  and regional economy, advances entrepreneurship education nationwide, and teaches  life-long problem solving for economic, social, scientific, and environmental  progress.

About the Eller College

Founded in 1933, the Eller College of Management at the University of Arizona upholds the visionary belief that business education helps shape the world in new and unprecedented ways through pioneering and practical research, innovative coursework, data-driven decision-making and excellence in entrepreneurship and social responsibility. Accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the Eller College of Management is home to more than 7,000 undergraduate, graduate and PhD students and offers nine majors, six minors, six specialty master’s programs, four MBA programs and six doctoral programs. The college also houses several centers of excellence and research labs. The college is currently ranked 21st in the United States by U.S. News & World Report for undergraduate business programs (number 11 public). U.S. News also ranks our full-time MBA number 49, our evening MBA number 46, our online MBA number 33 and our online master’s in MIS number 8 in the country. In addition, our management information systems department ranks number four nationally and our McGuire Center for Entrepreneurship is ranked number 10 nationally (U.S. News). The Eller Executive Education program debuted at number 68 in the Financial Times Executive Education Program ranking (number 4 in the Western U.S.).

Press Contact:

Amy Schmitz