EY Names Illinois Finalists for Entrepreneur of the Year

Austin Commercial Photographer - Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of t

Last month Ernst & Young named the finalists for their 2014 Entrepreneur of the Year in Illinois. Winners will go on to the annual Entrepreneur Of The Year awards is held in Palm Springs in November. Their list includes two of the top CEO’s from our most exciting startups.

The Midwest Awards Gala will be held on Wendesday, June 18th at the Navy Pier Grand Ballroom. The 2014 National event takes place November 12–16 as part of the Strategic Growth Forum. The highlight of the weekend is Saturday evening’s national awards gala, where the national finalists and winners are named. Entrepreneur Of The Year is the culminating event of the EY Strategic Growth Forum, a weeklong gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies.

Congratulations to the nominees from our community

Tim Walbert, President & CEO, Horizon Pharma

Mr. Walbert has served as chairman of our board of directors since 2010 and our president and chief executive officer since June 2008.  Mr. Walbert served as president, chief executive officer and director of IDM Pharma, Inc., a public biopharmaceutical company which was acquired by Takeda America Holdings, Inc., or Takeda, in June 2009.  Prior to IDM, Mr. Walbert served as executive vice president, commercial operations at NeoPharm, Inc., a public biopharmaceutical company.  From 2001 to 2005, Mr. Walbert served as divisional vice president and general manager, immunology, where he led the global development and launch of the multi-indication biologic HUMIRA, which is on track to exceed $10.0 billion in 2013 sales, and divisional vice president, global cardiovascular strategy at Abbott, now AbbVie.  From 1998 to 2001, Mr. Walbert served as director, CELEBREX North America and arthritis team leader, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Canada at G.D. Searle & Company.  From 1991 to 1998, Mr. Walbert also held sales and marketing roles with increasing responsibility at G.D. Searle, Merck & Co., Inc. and Wyeth.

Mr. Walbert received his B.A. in business from Muhlenberg College, in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Mr. Walbert serves on the board of directors of XOMA Ltd. (NASDAQ:  XOMA), Raptor Pharmaceutical Corp. (NASDAQ:  RPTP), Egalet Corporation (NASDAQ: EGLT), the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), the Illinois Biotechnology Industry Organization (iBIO), ChicagoNEXT, a World Business Chicago (WBC) led council of technology leaders and the Greater Chicago Arthritis Foundation.  Mr. Walbert was also recently appointed by Illinois Governor Pat Quinn to the Illinois Innovation Council.

Daphne Preuss, President & CEO, Chromatin

As Chromatin’s CEO, Daphne Preuss has assembled a vertically integrated sorghum business with state-of-the-art technologies, a market-leading breeding team, and global sales and distribution networks. After joining the company in 2006, she led the transition from a research stage to a commercial stage, through a series of alliances with leading agriculture companies, acquisitions, and commercial product sales. Preuss previously spent 16 years in plant research, founding Chromatin to commercialize synthetic chromosome technology developed in her laboratory at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and The University of Chicago. She served as the chair of the international committee that oversaw the sequencing of the first plant genome and currently serves on the Board of the Biotechnology Industry Organization as a member of its Food & Agriculture Governing Section Board. She earned a Ph.D. from MIT and performed postdoctoral work at Stanford.