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The Moxie Awards
Mentor of the Year
We are pleased to announce the following outstanding leaders as our finalists for The Moxie Awards' Mentor of the Year.
Daniel X. O’Neil is the Executive Director of the Smart Chicago Collaborative, a civic organization devoted to making lives better in Chicago through technology.
Prior to the Smart Chicago, O’Neil was a co-founder of and People Person for EveryBlock, a neighborhood news and discussion site serving 16 cities. In August 2009 EveryBlock was purchased by msnbc.com. After acquisition, O’Neil ran Business Development for EveryBlock, working on advertising, content partnerships, and integration with the core msnbc.com site. Prior to EveryBlock, O’Neil spent 10 years as an Internet strategist and project manager for Streams Online Media, one of the first web design firms in Chicago.
Since 2002 he’s run a number of independent Web projects, including CTA Alerts/ CTA Tweet and CityPayments.org. He’s developed dozens of Web sites for nonprofits, schools, and small businesses using easy-to-use and inexpensive tools such as weblogs, wikis, and social networking sites. In June of 2011 he was honored by the White House as a Champion of Change for Technology and Innovation.
O’Neil has a degree in English and Anthropology from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
George Deeb has a passion for start-ups and formalized his consulting efforts as the Founder and Managing Partner of Red Rocket in 2010. George has consulted over 200 startups since launching Red Rocket. George has a very deep base of relationships in the startup and venture community, in Chicago and nationwide. George desires to help other B2C and B2B entrepreneurs navigate through their start-up, fund raising or other business issues. George’s skills are particularly deep in strategy, corporate development, business development, fund raising, financial planning, sales, online marketing, e-commerce and online media/monetization. As author of 101 Startup Lessons-An Entrepreneur's Handbook, George is also a small business blogger at Crains Chicago and featured speaker at many startup-related events.
George received his BBA in finance from the University of Michigan in 1991. George was named an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2001, based on his efforts at iExplore.
As senior vice president of new business, strategy and innovation at Redbox, Mark Achler manages the Company’s long-term planning and expansion into new business opportunities. Prior to joining Redbox in 2009, Mark co-founded one of the first personal computer retail stores in the country and participated in the launch of the IBM PC in Boca Raton in 1981. He then moved to Apple, where he was the worldwide introduction manager for the Apple. After leaving Apple, Mark co-founded and served as CEO of the Whitewater Group, then co-founded the video game company Kinesoft Development, and later served as a founding general partner in Kettle Partners, an early-stage venture capital fund. While at Kettle, Mark was the lead investor in local Chicago companies such as Surepayroll (sold to PAYX) and Novarra (sold to NOK).
Mark is also a frequent speaker, resource and ardent champion for the entrepreneurial community; where he is a mentor for Excelerate Labs and the Chicago High Tech Academy.
Mike Boush is Vice President, E-Business at Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS). Discover is a leading credit card issuer, direct bank, and electronic payment services company, and is one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial services. Mike is responsible for the company’s digital strategy and delivery through online and mobile channels: marketing, customer service, community, and brand experience.
Troy Henikoff is the CEO and Co-founder of Excelerate, a seed stage accelerator in Chicago. Additionally he helps manage the FireStarter Fund, teaches Entrepreneurship at Northwestern University, is a Faculty Coach for University of Chicago / Booth’s New Venture Challenge, is on the board of the Chicagoland Entrepreneurial Center and an advisor to Hyde Park Angels. His last 25 years have been spent starting, running and advising early stage technology companies.
Congratulations to our finalists and please remember to vote!