In a ceremony held recently in Riverside, California, approximately 600 business and community leaders gathered to celebrate and award eight Inland Empire entrepreneurs. Scott Whipple & John Gordon – Canidae All Natural Pet Food – Norco, won the General Entrepreneur Award at the 9th Annual Spirit of the Entrepreneur Awards.
Whipple and Gordon began the company years ago in an effort to keep their pet food store in business after a national pet food chain moved into the neighborhood. Currently more than 7,000 pet food retailers carry Canidae pet food.
“Each year we find out just how deep the entrepreneurial talent pool of the Inland Empire is,” said Dr. Mike Stull, founding organizer of the event and director of Cal State San Bernardino’s Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship. “The number of unique companies and inspiring success stories continues to amaze us.” Stull went on to say that despite the current economic challenges, there are a lot of good things happening.
The Spirit of the Entrepreneur event was presented by the Inland Empire Center for Entrepreneurship at California State University San Bernardino and sponsored by a variety of local organizations. During the event, the Garner Holt Student Fast Pitch Competition took place, where five future entrepreneurs were able to deliver a 90-second pitch about their up-and-coming venture idea. The top three pitches were recognized and the top student won a $4,000 prize.
For its honor as Inland Empire Spirit of the Entrepreneur award, Canidae was recognized for its leadership, innovation, and business acumen of entrepreneurs. Further information about the event may be found at www.inlandspiritawards.com. Learn more about Canidae at www.canidae.com.