Here are the 11 winners in the 2018 FW Inc. Entrepreneur of Excellence competition, announced Thursday in a gala at the Fort Worth Club:
SUPPORTER OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP
Category winner: Tamara Payne and Dawn Shannon, co-owners, Ensemble Coworking
Finalists: Sherry Green and Allen Spinner, entrepreneurs in resident, Idea Works FW; Ed Riefenstahl and Valerie Riefenstahl, co-owners, ROI Associates
MEDIA, COMMUNICATIONS AND PUBLIC RELATIONS
Category winner: Randall Meinen, CEO, Qualbe Marketing Group
Finalists: Kelly Massey, CEO, Grit Productions; Matt Bowman, CEO, Thrive Internet Marketing Agency
It was the magazine’s second annual Entrepreneur of Excellence competition. Eligibility criteria included ownership or lead of a business in the greater Fort Worth area, at least two years in business, and $1 million in annual sales. The revenue requirement did not apply to the Supporter of Entrepreneurship category, for which there was no minimum.
Entrants must have been CEOs or majority owners; two executives were allowed to be nominated for the same company if they held 50-50 ownership stakes. Two executives per entity were also allowed to be nominated in Supporter of Entrepreneurship.
The nominees were independently judged by 25 business leaders. The judges chose the finalists and category winners based on sales and profit growth, best practices, ethical business practices, innovation, perseverance and community involvment. The judges made their decisions in early November; the magazine’s ownership and staff had no input into their choices. The category winners’ identities were kept secret until they were revealed Thursday at the Fort Worth Club. There was no cost associated with applying for, or being considered for, this award.
Tony Ford, CEO of Success Fort Worth and a past Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award winner, was the program director for the second straight year.