Meet the 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year Award Finalists

Alliance News |

Winner announced at annual award event celebrating innovative disruptors at Southern NH University on Tuesday, June 7

Four New Hampshire entrepreneurs have been selected as finalists for the Council’s annual Entrepreneur of the Year Award. They are: Howard Brodsky, CEO of CCA Global Partners of Manchester; Patrick Sullivan, president of Game Creek Video, LLC of Hudson, and Marjorie and Stephen Thorpe, president and vice president of finance, respectively, of Adaptive Communications LLC of Portsmouth. The winner will be announced at the Council’s annual Entrepreneur of the Year Event at 5:30 pm on Tuesday, June 7 at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), 2500 North River Road, Hooksett.

“The contributions that these individuals make to New Hampshire’s technology and business community pave the way for future innovation,” said Council Executive Director Matt Cookson. “Each has uniquely disrupted his or her industry, while setting the example for future entrepreneurs that with hard work, determination and drive, anything is possible.”

Howard Brodsky is the cofounder, chairman, and co-chief executive officer of CCA Global Partners, one of the largest privately held companies in the United States; and the second largest private company in New Hampshire. The company’s corporate headquarters is in Manchester. Brodsky, along with the founding team, created a cooperative retail powerhouse in the marketplace and the company is now composed of 13 affiliated companies with aggregated sales of more than $10 billion a year. A pioneer of the cooperative business model, Brodsky dedicated his career to helping entrepreneurs build successful businesses by providing the scale, resources and innovation that they needed to compete in an evolving marketplace. He had the vision to apply his successful business model to other industries: Carpet One Floor & Home, Flooring America, Flooring Canada, The Floor Trader, FEI Group, International Design Guild, Lighting One, ProSource, and The Bike Cooperative, which operate at more than 3,000 locations. CCA’s newest divisions are CCA for Social Good which services more than 2,000 child care centers and 1,000 nonprofits; BizUnite, which provides back room business services for over one million independent businesses; Innovia Community Management Cooperative, which enables companies to seize opportunities and improve profitability: and CCA Sports Retail Services, which helps independent fitness and ski stores thrive. His many industry recognitions include being inducted into the Cooperative Hall of Fame, which recognizes those who make unparalleled contributions to advancing the business model.

Patrick Sullivan launched Game Creek Video in 1993 with a degree from Boston College, two mobile television production trucks, six employees and the knowledge that comes with growing up in major league football. A former ball boy, stadium manager and New England Patriots’ general manager for seven years, he is now president of the industry’s leading mobile high definition TV production-services company. Among his many technological accomplishments, he helped the Hudson-based company launch the world’s first large scale IP based routing system in a remote production facility in 2015. This remote production facility was the primary home for the 2015 US Open golf tournament television coverage for FOX. Together, Game Creek Video and its team has received more than a dozen Emmys and Emmy nominations for their part in technical remote productions on NASCAR, ESPN College Gameday, ROOT baseball, and ESPN NBA Finals. Sullivan’s thriving business sets industry standards and now includes of a fleet of 35 trucks, a team of more than 100 employees, and a presence at virtually every major televised sports and political event in America.

Adaptive Communications is a premier reseller, designer and installer of enterprise networking, information security and data storage solutions on the East Coast. The company, which was founded in 1997 and has 53 employees, earned the Raymond J. Bourque Hall of Fame Award and was named one of Business New Hampshire Magazine’s Top 100 Private Companies, among many other accolades. Marjorie Thorpe, who manages the company’s operations, was named as New Hampshire Business Review’s 2104 Financial Executive of the Year She has served on the advisory board for Securematics, and supports many community organizations. She holds a degree in early childhood education from Springfield College and has managed Adaptive’s human resources, purchasing, and operations as well as its finances. Stephen Thorpe, who started the company together with his wife Marjorie, launched his first entrepreneurial effort at age 12. Prior to founding Adaptive, he served as one of the first 35 employees at Cabletron Systems, and helped grow Peripheral Innovations into one of the region’s largest technology resellers, and Bay Networks.

The hallmark EOY event features a new format this year, with a lineup of local “disruptors” who will each share brief talks about what disruption means and how it applies to their individual entrepreneurial journeys. Featured speakers are: Paula C. Beauregard, co-founder, president and CEO at Edge Velocity Corporation; Edna Conway, CSO, Global Value Chain, Cisco Systems; Jeremy Hitchcock, founder of Dyn; and Paul LeBlanc, president of Southern NH University.

Tickets to the event, where attendees will hear from these three local innovators and find out who is named 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year, are available online. Tickets are $80 for Council members, $100 for not-yet-members, and $30 for students. The event includes networking, tabletop presentations from more than a dozen promising tech start-up companies, dinner and cash bar.

The 2016 Entrepreneur of the Year major sponsors are: Dyn; FairPoint Communications; Nanocomp Technologies; Autodesk; Baker Newman Noyes; Brady Sullivan Properties; Cook, Little, Rosenblatt & Manson; People’s United Bank; Newforma; Hypertherm; TD Bank, UNH Manchester, Cirtronics; and media sponsor NH Business Review.