OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

college of business

Entrepreneur to discuss water, energy conservation

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Entrepreneur Fred Ziari will explore water and energy conservation in a presentation on Thursday, May 19, at Oregon State University.

The free public talk is titled “Do What is in Front of You,” and will be at noon at the Construction & Engineering Hall of the LaSells Stewart Center on the OSU campus. It is part of the Entrepreneurs in Residence Lecture Series.

Ziari, founder of four separate companies, has helped save billions of gallons of water and hundreds of millions of kilowatt hours of electricity. His innovations focus on water and energy conservation, broadband wireless, “smart home” technologies and other areas. He also founded Farmers Ending Hunger, a nonprofit organization that last year provided more than two million pounds of food products to various Oregon food banks.

In addition to the public event, Ziari will be available at a faculty luncheon on May 19 at 1:30 p.m. and a fireside chat with students at 3 p.m. To participate in either event, contact Mary McKillop at mary.mckillop@bus.oregonstate.edu or call 541-713-8044.       

The lecture series is presented by the Austin Entrepreneurship Program and the College of Agricultural Sciences, and supported by the Roger and Sharon Detering Agricultural Entrepreneurship Fund.

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Mary McKillop, 541-713-8044

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Fred Ziari
Fred Ziari

Alumni and Business Partner Awards honor business achievements

PORTLAND, Ore. – Prominent business leaders from around the country were honored on Tuesday during the Oregon State University College of Business’ Alumni and Business Partner Awards, which was held at the Governor Hotel in Portland.

The annual event recognizes outstanding professional achievements and service by the OSU College of Business alumni and business partners.

The 2011 award winners were:

• Hall of Fame: Patricia Bedient (’75), executive vice president and chief financial officer, Weyerhaeuser

• Distinguished Business Professional: Steve Gomo (’74), executive vice president and chief financial officer, NetApp Inc.

• Distinguished Early Career Business Professional: Ryan Smith (’95), chief financial officer, Nike Golf

• Distinguished Young Business Professional: Rachel Todd (MBA ’08), vice president, Clinical Services & Specialty Practices, Samaritan Health Services

• Distinguished Business Partner: Ferguson Wellman Capital Management, Mark Kralj, principal

• Distinguished Service Award: Brigadier General Al Guidotti (’56), Boeing (retired)

The event was sponsored by the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers.

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Jenn Casey, 541-737-0695

Five high school teachers awarded Outstanding High School Educator Award

PORTLAND, Ore. – Five exceptional high school teachers from Portland, Rockaway Beach, Lake Oswego, Gold Beach and Vancouver, Wash. are this year’s recipients of the Outstanding High School Educator Award.

The awards are sponsored by Oregon State University’s College of Business and the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers.

Honorees will be recognized at Oregon State University’s 2011 College of Business Alumni & Business Partner Awards dinner on Tuesday, May 3, in Portland. Each will receive a $500 award to use in advancing educational programs at their school.

The annual awards recognize high school educators whose efforts have improved student achievement, used innovative and exemplary instructional strategies and enhanced student learning. Winners were selected based on their philosophy in teaching and how their efforts improved education in innovative ways.

Nominations were submitted from throughout Oregon and southwest Washington and were made by students, fellow teachers and administrators.

“We believe that education, especially at the high school level, provides the building blocks of leadership and evaluation, as well as the inspiration for future achievement,” said Steve Clark, president of the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers.

The following teachers will receive this year’s Outstanding High School Educator Awards:

  • Gretchen Anthony has taught at Gold Beach High School on the Oregon coast for more than 21 years. She is known for instilling complex mathematics subjects through creative techniques, including guest speakers to illustrate career opportunities and the role of mathematics in the business world.
  • Diana Bledsoe is a teacher at Legacy High School in Vancouver, Wash., where she helps at-risk students retain essential life skills and meet graduation requirements. Her varied courses incorporate student interest in writing, culture and history that create a learning atmosphere of motivation, curiosity and engagement.
  • Elena Garcia-Velasco has developed and implemented a rigorous college-bound philosophy among students at Roosevelt High School in Portland. She teaches advanced placement classes for native Spanish- and English-speaking students.
  • Beth Gienger of Neah-Kah-Nie High School in Rockaway Beach has been a science teacher for 27 years and continually inspires students with her expertise in marine biology. She has taken students to numerous science competitions and has won championships.
  • Terry Moore, a teacher at Lakeridge High School in Lake Oswego, is known for using innovative instructional methods at to help students understand difficult mathematics concepts. He has inspired students to become doctors, lawyers, business leaders, teachers, mathematicians and even a Rhodes Scholar.
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Jenn Casey, 541-737-0695

Oregon CEO Summit held May 3 in Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. – The second annual Oregon CEO Summit, which will include business leaders discussing how innovation is driving success in the new economy, will take place from noon to 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, at the Governor Hotel in Portland.

The event begins with lunch and keynote address by Patricia Bedient, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Weyerhaeuser. Bedient will speak about the role of innovation in a 110-year-old company today and in the future.

Following the keynote, a discussion panel will feature enterprising business people in health care, natural resources, technology, and business sectors.

Panelists will discuss the role of innovation in creating value-added and high-paying jobs, growing new markets for the global economy, and developing next-generation leaders. The panelists are:

The panel will be moderated by Steve Clark, president of the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers.

The Oregon CEO Summit is sponsored by Oregon State University’s College of Business and the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers. Registration for the summit is $50, which includes lunch. The Governor Hotel is located at 614 S.W. 11th Ave., Portland. Registration is due by Thursday, April 28.

For more information and to register, go to business.oregonstate.edu/CEOsummit.

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Jenn Casey, 541-737-0695

How American consumers view debt: a case study

CORVALLIS, Ore. – A new study published this month suggests that while younger Americans are more smitten with credit cards and debt than older Americans, the older generation helps enable their children by encouraging use of credit as a “safety mechanism.”

The findings were based on case studies conducted with 27 white, middle-class Americans in 2006. The researchers, Michelle Barnhart of Oregon State University and Lisa Peñaloza of Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales du Nord of France, wanted to explore some of the attitudes, perceptions and cultural meanings behind how Americans view and use debt and credit that could have contributed to the economic recession. While a small study, Barnhart said these participants were representative of overall perceptions Americans have on credit.

The results, which include detailed interviews with participants, are currently available online and will be published in the December issue of the Journal of Consumer Research.

“The economic crash was not just about people being dumb or greedy,” Barnhart said. “There are compelling forces out there that lead people to live lifestyles outside of their means.”

In 2008 alone, Americans spent 9.3 percent of their income servicing debt. And in 2010, more than 24 percent of homes in the United States had an upside-down mortgage owing more than the homes were worth. Based on interviews conducted before the 2008 financial crisis, researchers found that even though consumers espouse that they should limit their debt, they take on significant debt because doing so has become normal. As one participant put it, taking on debt is “the American way.”

Barnhart and Peñaloza’s research yielded a few key findings, including:

  • Americans suffer from a lack of financial literacy. Every participant said they had learned about credit card use and debt primarily through personal experience. Very few had received any training in school or at home, and most participants said they didn’t discuss family finances with their children.
  • Half of the participants had debt they were unable to pay and one-third of them were dealing with collection agencies.
  • Participants often talked about credit as a measure of worth, noting that if they were approved for a certain loan they were “good enough for that car.” Statements often indicated that approval for big-ticket items such as cars and homes were directly related to a value of the person.
  • Those who had credit cards and paid them off each month tended to be older, and had higher incomes.
  • Several of the younger participants in the study noted that they did not want to use credit, but felt they had to in order to finance cars and homes in the future. Most of the younger participants also were encouraged by their parents to have credit cards, and started using credit at a much younger age than those older than 50.

Barnhart, who is an assistant professor of marketing at OSU, said much of the research done on cultural behavior and attitudes leading up to the economic downturn has focused on ethnic minorities and low-income minorities. However, she said it has been some of the most educated and privileged of Americans who have engaged in risky financial behavior.

This case study, while a small sample, was able to ask detailed questions to probe into deeper issues within American society.

“Over time, credit card use and heavy debt has become normalized in our culture,” she said. “Even though we say as a society, ‘don’t get in debt,’ the overwhelming messages being sent out – from the way credit is used to approve or disapprove us for services to political leaders telling us to spend after a big disaster to prove our patriotism – all of this has created a culture of debt.”

One of the few young participants to not carry any debt said she felt punished for her refusal to have a credit card. She was refused a cell phone, and had encountered embarrassing situations during business travel because she did not have a credit card. Barnhart said this system of penalizing consumers for not using credit is one of the problems.

“Your credit score is this big black box mystery,” she said. “There are three companies in the entire country that control this information, and they make the rules and the equation is secret. So people are told to get credit cards, but not use them. For some, this is equivalent to filling your freezer with ice cream and telling you not to eat it.”

Barnhart would like to next do a study about how norms, values, and habits have changed since the economic crisis. However, she said financial literacy is still the missing link in American society. She and Peñaloza believe that financial literacy classes should be required in schools, and that these classes should not only address credit card fees and compound interest, but also critique debt as a cultural value.

“It’s easy to sit back and blame consumers for just spending too much, but the truth is we have an entire infrastructure set up to support, maintain and encourage credit card use and debt,” Barnhart said. “I would love to see economics back in high school classes that addresses how to manage household finances. And firms need to step up. The 2010 credit card reform was a step in the right direction, but more needs to be done.”

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Michelle Barnhart, 541-737-1455

Students and aspiring entrepreneurs invited to ‘pitch’ business ideas for competition

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon college students and entrepreneurs are invited to pitch their venture ideas for the chance to win cash and other prizes.

Oregon State University’s Austin Entrepreneurship Program will hold The American Dream Elevator Pitch Competition on Friday, April 22, at the CH2M Hill Alumni Center, 725 S.W. 26th St. Corvallis. The event runs from 9:30 a.m. to noon and is free and open to the public.

The idea of an elevator pitch is that the entrepreneur has about the length of an elevator ride to explain a business idea. Participants will each have 90 seconds to pitch their venture idea to a panel of judges, which will include successful entrepreneurs, senior executives, venture advisers and investors. The participant must tell the judges what their venture does and convince the panel why it is compelling to both investors and customers.

Participants will compete in one of two categories: a student entrepreneur division and an entrepreneur division.

Each division will compete separately, and the finalists in each will go head to head for the top overall prizes. The award for first place is $500, while second place winners will receive $250, and third place finishers $200.

Entries must be received by April 15 to be eligible to compete in the event. For information on entry requirements, visit http://aep.bus.oregonstate.edu

The Austin Entrepreneurship Program is the largest residential living-learning facility dedicated to entrepreneurship in the nation. Because the majority of its residents are first-year students, the program shapes many students from the start of their OSU experience, providing a deeper immersion in entrepreneurial thinking.

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Mary McKillop, 541-713-8044

Alumni and Business Partner Awards set for May 3 in Portland

PORTLAND, Ore. – Prominent business leaders from around the country will be honored during the Oregon State University College of Business’ Alumni and Business Partner Awards on Tuesday, May 3, at the Governor Hotel in Portland.

The event begins at 5:30 p.m. with a reception, followed by dinner and the awards presentation.

This annual event recognizes outstanding professional achievements and service by the OSU College of Business alumni and business partners.

The 2011 award winners include:

• Hall of Fame: Patricia Bedient (’75), executive vice president and chief financial officer, Weyerhaeuser

• Distinguished Business Professional: Steve Gomo (’74), executive vice president and chief financial officer, NetApp Inc.

• Distinguished Early Career Business Professional: Ryan Smith (’95), chief financial officer, Nike Golf

• Distinguished Young Business Professional: Rachel Todd (MBA ’08), vice president, Clinical Services & Specialty Practices, Samaritan Health Services

• Distinguished Business Partner: Ferguson Wellman Capital Management, award being accepted by Mark Kralj (’78), principal

• Distinguished Service Award: Brigadier General Al Guidotti (’56), Boeing (retired)

For more information and to register on or before April 22, visit http://business.oregonstate.edu/awards

The event is sponsored by the Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers.

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Gwen Wolfram, 541-737-4330

Nominations sought for Outstanding High School Educator Awards

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Nominations are being sought for the 2011 Outstanding High School Educator Awards.

Sponsored by Portland Tribune and Community Newspapers and the Oregon State University College of Business, the awards will recognize five educators who use innovative and exemplary instructional strategies to enhance student learning.

The nominee must be a high school educator (teacher, adviser, or administrator) in Oregon or Clark County, Wash., with at least two years of experience as an educator. The winning five nominees will each receive a $500 cash prize and recognition at the OSU College of Business’ 2011 Alumni and Business Partner Awards dinner on May 3 at the Governor Hotel in Portland.

Nominations can be submitted online on or before April 8 at http://portlandtribune.com/forms/educator_award.php

The High School Educator Awards were established in 2008 to acknowledge the importance of business education at the high school level. The awards ceremony takes place in conjunction with the Alumni and Business Partner Awards, an annual event that honors prominent OSU College of Business alumni and friends.

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Sue Curran, (503) 546-0716

OSU launches research to help colleges connect with alumni and donors

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Oregon State University’s Close to the Customer Project has launched a new research tool, the Building Community Initiative (BCI), to assist other colleges and universities in fundraising efforts. 

The BCI assesses the affinity and connection that exists among an institution’s alumni and donors. This level of affinity is measured in four areas. The BCI affinity research looks broadly at the diverse relationship a person can have with an institution of higher education. It produces a score that is associated with each area of affinity and each person is assigned an overall BCI score denoting their overall level of affinity toward the institution. 

“What sets this research apart from other products on the market is its ability to pinpoint how alumni and donors feel right now,” said James McAlexander, director of the Close to the Customer Project and a professor of marketing at OSU. “We are not looking at public domain information. We are going to the source and using very specific questions and detailed analysis to determine an alumni or donor’s allegiance to an institution.”

Many research tools used by universities to identify a donor’s giving potential typically screen for capacity to give or often assigns a person a “wealth score,” McAlexander said. The BCI provides university advancement and foundation professionals a fresh and innovative way of connecting with alumni and donors.

The information gained through the BCI survey can be used independently or combined with existing wealth and biographical information to create a deeper understanding of a person’s affinity and propensity to give. This research has the capacity to bring new donors to the surface, focus development priorities and even discover underlying areas of dissatisfaction for current or potential donors.

Mark Koenig, senior director of advancement services for the OSU Foundation, said BCI has been invaluable for him to put together lists of potential donors for the Campaign for OSU. The OSU Foundation used the BCI to learn more about their discovery pool. 

“The BCI score tells me whether someone has high affinity towards the university rather than lukewarm affinity, so we can really prioritize those individuals that we want to reach out to first,” he said.  

Koenig emphasized that he used the information not only to prioritize contacts but appropriately segment potential donors.

“We were able to not only find out how well alumni liked their experience at OSU, but what their priorities are,” he said. “So maybe a certain person loved their professor and degree, but hates athletics. We’re not going to target that person to contribute to a new athletics facility.”

For information on this research, go to www.oregonstate.edu\bci

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James McAlexander, 541-737-3182

Weatherford Awards honors entrepreneurs, innovators on Feb. 17

CORVALLIS, Ore. – Business leaders from across the state will gather Thursday, Feb. 17, at the Hilton in downtown Portland for the third annual Weatherford Awards, Oregon State University’s celebration of lifelong and pioneering entrepreneurship and innovation.

The event, hosted by OSU’s Austin Entrepreneurship Program, starts at 5:30 p.m. with a reception, followed by a dinner and the award presentations. Tickets are $75, available until sold out and can be obtained by contacting Mary McKillop, 541-713-8044, e-mail mary.mckillop@bus.oregonstate.edu or on the web at: http://business.oregonstate.edu/programs/aep.

“The Weatherford Awards recognize pioneering and lifelong entrepreneurs and innovators who have shaped our world and, in many cases, are simply overlooked,” said Christopher Klemm, director of the Austin Entrepreneurship Program. “Our goal is to honor those pioneering spirits and help publicize the role, importance, and variety of entrepreneurs and innovators who have Oregon roots.”

Past individuals honored through the Weatherford Awards include a broad cross-section of individuals and their activities. For example, among the entrepreneurs honored at past awards include the inventor of the inkjet printer, cattle ranchers, a wheat breeder, a restaurateur, and a natural foods maker.

The awards are named for OSU's Weatherford Hall where entrepreneurship and business students can explore their innovations and new venture ideas in a unique, living learning residence hall.

For complete bios of the winners, go to: http://business.oregonstate.edu/programs/aep

The recipients of the 2011 Weatherford Awards will be:

  • Frank Dulcich, entrepreneur, co-founder and CEO of Pacific Seafood. Headquartered in Clackamas, Pacific Seafood opened its first retail location in Portland in 1941. Dulcich has successfully driven his company to become the largest vertically integrated seafood company in the United States.
  • Paul Gulick, entrepreneur and founder of Clarity Visual Systems, co-founder of InFocus Corporation, father of the digital projector. Until late 2007, Paul served as chief technology officer of Planar Systems, Inc., a leader in specialty display systems. Gulick serves on six boards and holds 17 U.S. patents in the field of electronic displays and related technologies.
  • Jack Smith, inventor and co-founder of Hotmail, serial entrepreneur. Jack Smith started Hotmail, the first Web-based email service. After Hotmail was sold to Microsoft in 1997, Smith focused on advanced infrastructure design. He is CEO of the information security company Proximex.
  • Rex Smith, former chairman and COO of the Hotmail venture and father of Jack Smith. Rex Smith served as vice president for MSN Operations prior to his retirement in 2002. In 2006, Smith received the OSU College of Engineering Hall of Fame award.
  • Junki Yoshida is chairman and CEO of Yoshida Group, visionary behind the famous Yoshida sauce. Born in Kyoto, Japan, Yoshida arrived in Seattle at the age of 19 with only $500 in his pocket. Today his line of sauces sells in stores throughout the country.
  • Fred Ziari is founder of ezWireless and IRZ Consulting, a leader in water and energy conservation technologies. He is chief executive of IRZ Consulting, ezWireless and Onsmart LLC. Ziari founded OnSmart Technologies in collaboration with Intel to provide the next generation of hardware and software platform that will allow homeowners to manage the energy use in their homes.
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Christopher Klemm, 541-737-8046

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Frank Dulcich
Frank Dulcich Paul Gulick
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Jack Smith Rex Smith
Rex Smith
yoshida
Junki Yoshida Fred Ziari
Fred Ziari