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Friday, April 23, 2010

Bernstein Award Finalists Compete for $5K on April 24

SALISBURY, MD---Salisbury University’s 2010 Bernstein Achievement Award finalists are creating new businesses—and competing for a top prize of $5,000.

“We tend to look for innovation from relatively new industries, where technology is central to the product or service,” said Dr. Stephen Adams, who teaches entrepreneurship in SU’s Perdue School of Business and is director of the Bernstein Awards.  “What’s exciting about this year’s finalists is that they propose using 21st century technology and know-how to transform the operation of age-old industries including boating, theater, horticulture and higher education.”

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Seniors Michael Silvers of Salisbury and Matthew Dotterer of Westminster, MD, were selected for Deals On Deck, a new company designed to deliver location-based advertising to the recreational boaters using cell or smart phones.

A company called Knollege LLC was created by M.B.A. student Ryan Chacon of Laytonsville, MD, senior Charles Gray of Fruitland, and junior Hunter McIntyre of Highland, MD.  They hope to create an exclusive online educational network for college students nationwide to share ideas, questions and knowledge.

In addition to these two teams, two individual plans were also selected.  Junior John Kline of Rockville, MD, developed AIR (Atmosphere Improvement and Renewal) Lawn Care, a new company that will provide environmentally-friendly and sustainable residential lawn services.

Repeat finalist Erik Butler, a junior from Burtonsville, MD, created the Theatrical Warehouse, a one-stop retail shop providing theatrical products including sets, lighting equipment, hardware, lumber, tools paint and other specialty items.

The finalists will present their plans 2–5:30 p.m. Saturday, April 24, in Holloway Hall, Room 114.  The presentations are free and the public is invited.

A four member judging panel will pick the winner, who will be named at a reception that evening.  The 2010 judges are:  Warren Citron of Glotocorp, Renee Stephens, the Eastern Shore manager of the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development; Hayley Gallagher, executive director of Maryland Capital Enterprises, and Lee Kirwan, the Eastern Shore representative for the TEDCO Rural Business Innovations Initiative.

The Bernstein Achievement Award for Excellence was launched in 1987 by local entrepreneur and SU alumnus Richard Bernstein (’76), founder of BAI Aerosystems, Inc. in Easton and K&L Microwave, Inc. in Salisbury. He created the competition to recognize students who develop original, well-researched and potentially successful proposals for a business startup or for the transformation of an existing business.

The award is designed to encourage and to provide resources for young entrepreneurs to move forward with their visions. SU graduate and undergraduate students in any program of study may participate. Several award winners have gone on to operate successful businesses.

For more information call 410-543-6030 or visit the SU Web site at        

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