Monday, October 25, 2021
BusinessPhilanthropy & Nonprofits

What is next for the 2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Semi-Finalists?


On September 25th they go face-to-face with the Judges!

Ontario, CA – The Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship (IECE) will be hosting the 2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Awards Judging reception on, Wednesday, September 25th where our official 2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Semi-Finalists will convene with our judges face-to-face at the Spirit Judging reception (by invitation only). From this event the finalists will be determined. Once they have been determined, the 2019 Spirit Finalists will be featured at the Spirit Awards gala on November 13th at the Riverside Convention Center. Finalists to be announced September 26th, 2019.

The Spirit judging reception event is generously sponsored by Roorda, Piquet & Bessee, Inc. ( who have been providing tax, audit, and accounting and advisory services in the Inland Empire area for over 35 years.


All nominees are initially screened and evaluated by the Spirit of the Entrepreneur awards staff to ensure that they meet the basic eligibility requirements. Those companies that pass the initial screening are eligible to participate in the judging reception.

Judges for the event are selected by the Spirit of the Entrepreneur producers and work independently, evaluating each nominee.  Each judge is chosen based on their prior business experience, integrity and willingness to dedicate a significant amount of time to review and evaluate the nominees.  The judging panel is almost exclusively made up of past Spirit award recipients and business leadership professionals that have been vetted to serve as our esteemed judges.

Each eligible nominee provides extensive company information that is used in the judging process. Judging is based on financial metrics as well the nominee’s accomplishments, innovative approaches and their entrepreneurial spirit.

This year selecting the 2019 finalists from a vast field of over 220 entrepreneurial nominees will be a very difficult task! 

VIEW Our Chosen 2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Semi-Finalists (

LEARN MORE About the Judging Process… (


SECURE Your Tickets to the gala – this event is sold out every year! * (

More information about sponsorship & volunteer opportunities please contact Mike Stull (909) 537-3708 or via email



Attendees can book tickets online with direct seat selection for the 2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Awards gala event at Attendees have the selection choice of pre-show standard reception or our VIP reception Ticket prices for the black-tie event range from $135 to $175 each. Full-table discounts are available. Details are located below:

Spirit Awards Event Features:

  • Commencing at 5:00 p.m. on November 13th, attendees can experience either a Gala or VIP reception, three course dinner, stellar event entertainment, awards presentations, and for select parties, an exclusive after party! (
  • The “Best of the Best” award. Sponsored by Best, Best & Krieger (
    One company from among the award recipients that best exemplifies the entrepreneurial spirit will take home the additional 2019 Best of the Best award.
  • The Garner Holt Student Fast Pitch Competition (
    Witness featured business pitches from the Top 5 student finalists. Audience members cast their votes for the best business idea through a live voting poll to determine which students will win the cash prizes. These Top 5 students will have competed in a semi-qualifying event that is held one week prior to the Spirit Awards gala in order to gain those top positions. A truly unique aspect to our awards program that celebrates and supports student growth and involvement.
  • Entertainment
    Upcoming entertainment guest stars are always an anticipated reveal during the gala. Past events have included top flight entertainment such as: Rock Legend Eddie Money, Ekenah Claudin-Transcending Box, and Greg Adamson- Facing the Music Performance Art.
  • VIP Reception Sponsored by City National Bank, an RBC Company (
    Treat yourself to a luxurious experience only available to VIP ticket holders. The 2019 Spirit VIP Experience includes access to the exclusive pre-show VIP reception with hosted wine bar, hors d’oeuvres, entertainment, and preferred access to showroom seating for the gala presentation as well as top section seating for the main event while you enjoy specialty selected cuisine for your 3-course dining experience.

Proceeds from the Spirit of the Entrepreneur event benefit the Spirit of the Entrepreneur Scholarship established by Dr. Mike Stull, Director of Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship at California State University, San Bernardino. (


About the Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship (IECE) (

Established in 1999, the Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship (IECE) supports and celebrate Entrepreneurship & Small Business through innovative programs and educational resources. IECE coordinates academic programs that lead to business degrees in Entrepreneurship for undergraduate and graduate students as well as delivering experiential learning and student support programs such as the Fast Pitch Competition.  In the local community, IECE offers existing and aspiring entrepreneurs a wide array of business advisory and mentoring services and entrepreneurial training programs that help them achieve greater levels of success in their business ventures.

IECE was recognized internationally by The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) and received the Entrepreneurship Spotlight Challenge award for demonstrating leadership in creating (and incubating) cutting-edge business innovations through enriched student learning and experiential education; which ranked them among the top 35 entrepreneurship programs globally.

California State University, San Bernardino is a preeminent center of intellectual and cultural activity in Inland Southern California. Opened in 1965 and set at the foothills of the beautiful San Bernardino Mountains, the university serves more than 20,000 students each year and graduates about 4,000 students annually. CSUSB offers 48 undergraduate, 35 graduate, and 1 doctoral degree programs and 14 academic programs with national accreditation.

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Inland Empire Business Journal
The Inland Empire Business Journal (IEBJ) is the official business news publication of Southern California’s Inland Empire region - covering San Bernardino & Riverside Counties.