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2019 Spirit of the Entrepreneur Semi-Finalists Announced

Inland Empire Semi-Finalists Spirit Awards

On September 25th, Entrepreneurial Semi-Finalists Meet 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.

The Judging Process

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!


  • 8 Bit Brewing Company, Chris Keyson – Murrieta
  • Acorn Technology Services, Mickey McGuire Jr. – Riverside
  • Arcade Coffee Roasters, Stephen Hasemeyer – Riverside
  • Avalon Shutters, Inc., Bob Marcynyszyn – Perris
  • Benchmark Transitions, Jayne Longnecker-Harper, M.Ed. – Redlands
  • buzzbox beverages, inc., Rod Vandenbos – Indio
  • Digital Dental Leaders, Eric True – Menifee
  • Do It American MFG Company, LLC, Jon Armstrong – Corona
  • Education through Imagination, Ryan Rainbolt – Redlands
  • Extreme Plates, LLC , Cris and Mindy Follett – Yucaipa
  • Help Heal Veterans, Joseph S. McClain – Winchester
  • High Light Electric Inc , Erwin Mendoza – Riverside
  • Holstrom, Block & Parke, APLC and Custody Queens, Kristen A. Holstrom & Dayn A. Holstrom – Corona
  • Hub Construction Specialties, Inc., Edward Dainko, III – San Bernardino
  • Karla Adams Club, Karla Adams – Riverside
  • Kelly Smile Dentistry, Dr. Kelly Hong – Victorville
  • Klatch Coffee, Heather Perry – Rancho Cucamonga
  • Mary S. Roberts Pet Adoption Center, Carrie Ridgway – Riverside
  • Muscle Bar LLC , Nicola Fakhoury – Alta Loma
  • Pacific Capital, Chad Willardson – Corona
  • Pepe’s Towing Service, Manny Acosta – Moreno Valley
  • Poindexter Consulting Group, Vikita Poindexter – Murrieta
  • Premier Solar Cleaning, LLC., Adam Fuller – Murrieta
  • Protech Staffing Services, Inc., Leo Castaneda – Riverside
  • QC Manufacturing, Inc., Dane Stevenson – Temecula
  • Riverside Family Physicians, APMC (RFP), Tarek Zaki Mahdi, MD – Riverside
  • Royal Interpack North America Inc. , Radhika Chawla – Riverside
  • Ruff & Ready Moving LLC , John Ruff – Temecula
  • Scott Equipment, Western Rentals, Western Construction Auction, Richard & Gregg Scott – Fontana
  • Social Catfish, LLC, David McClellan and James Meyers – Murrieta
  • Sullivan Solar Power, Daniel Sullivan – Riverside
  • Sunergy Construction Inc, Jonathan Mitchell – Corona
  • The Sash Company, Inc., Angelique Barnum – Upland
  • Unidos Por La Musica Nonprofit, Oscar Ayon – Ontario
  • United Transmission Exchange, Karen Mason – San Bernardino
  • VeneCacao Chocolateria , Stephen M Heinemann – Riverside
  • VIRTEK Company, Virgal Woolfolk – Menifee
  • Warren Packaging Inc, Phil Warren – Ontario

LEARN MORE About the Judging Process


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.

This story is Partner Content.

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