EY Reveals 19 Winners of the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2024 Southwest Award

Dallas-Fort Worth trailblazers lead the pack with 17 of the 19 winners in the prestigious EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest Awards, representing diverse industries including recycling, healthcare, sports marketing, and cosmetics retailing.

EY 2024 Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest Award winners, from left: Top row, Jodi Parker, All American Tire Recyclers; Tom Parker, All American Tire Recyclers; Sam Scoten, CheckSammy; John Zutter, Employer Direct Healthcare; and Cole Gahagan, Learfield. Second row, Robin Alex, HighLevel; Shaun Clark, HighLevel; Varun Vairavan, HighLevel; and Dave Marcinkowski, Madera Residential. Third row, Brandon Schwertner, Priority Power Management LLC; Kenneth Baik, Miss A. Stores, Inc.; Jean Baik, Miss A. Stores, Inc.; Mike Beckham, Simple Modern; and Jeff Jones, VIRA Insight, LLC. Fourth row, Jaryd Stein, Stride Healthcare Management LLC; Ben Weinstein, Stride Healthcare Management LLC; John Steinmetz, Vista Bank; Ashli Blumenfeld, Standard Meat Company; and Ben Rosenthal, Standard Meat Company. [Photo and image source: EY]

Ernst & Young has announced the winners of its 2024 Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest Award. The 19 winners, representing 13 companies, were unveiled during a celebration event on Saturday, June 15.

The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest program honors transformational leaders of high-growth companies across North Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Wichita, Kansas.

“The 2024 Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest Award winners are exceptional business leaders fueling innovation within their industries and growth within their companies,”  Rex Alexander, partner and Southwest program director at EY, said in a statement. “These entrepreneurs are shining examples of how to lead a scaling business and also care for their employees, customers, and communities.”

Winners are chosen based on their entrepreneurial spirit, purpose, growth, and impact. According to EY, the program celebrates various types of business leaders, including original founders who bootstrapped their businesses, transformational CEOs who infused innovation into existing organizations, and multigenerational family business leaders who reimagined legacy business models. 

Winners were selected from 45 Southwest finalists

EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year trophy [Image: Ernst & Young]

This year’s Entrepreneur Of The Year Southwest Award winners were selected from among the 45 finalists announced in April. The 2024 winners represent a diverse array of industries, including healthcare, technology, retail, energy, and manufacturing. Among the 19 winners, 17 are from Dallas-Fort Worth.

The 2024 winners are:

  • Jodi Parker and Tom Parker, All American Tire Recyclers, Fort Worth
    All American Tire Recyclers provides environmentally friendly tire recycling services.

  • Sam Scoten, Checksammy, Dallas
    Checksammy provides tech-enabled sustainability solutions focused on waste management and recycling.

  • John Zutter, Employer Direct Healthcare, Dallas
    Employer Direct Healthcare offers healthcare solutions aiming to improve access to high-quality care for employees.

  • Robin Alex, Shaun Clark, and Varun Vairavan, HighLevel, Dallas
    HighLevel provides a marketing automation platform designed to enhance customer engagement for agencies.

  • Cole Gahagan, Learfield, Plano
    Learfield deals with collegiate sports marketing, providing multimedia rights management, sponsorship, and broadcasting services.

  • Dave Marcinkowski, Madera Residential, Lubbock
    Madera Residential focuses on multifamily real estate investment and property management with a technological approach.

  • Jean Baik and Kenneth Baik, Miss A Stores, Inc., Dallas
    Miss A Stores is a beauty and cosmetics retailer known for its affordable products.

  • Brandon Schwertner, Priority Power Management LLC, Arlington
    Priority Power Management offers energy management and consulting services to help businesses optimize their energy procurement and usage.

  • Mike Beckham, Simple Modern, Moore, Oklahoma
    Simple Modern creates stylish and functional drinkware and lifestyle products aimed at enhancing daily living.

  • Ashli Blumenfeld and Ben Rosenthal, Standard Meat Company, Fort Worth
    Standard Meat Company supplies high-quality meats and meat processing services.

  • Jaryd Stein and Ben Weinstein, Stride Healthcare Management LLC, Dallas
    Stride Healthcare Management offers healthcare facility management services focusing on efficiency and quality care.

  • Jeff Jones, VIRA Insight, LLC, Lewisville
    VIRA Insight designs and manufactures custom retail displays and fixtures.

  • John Steinmetz, Vista Bank, Dallas
    Vista Bank offers banking services with a focus on community and local business support.


Winners move on to the national competition

As regional winners, these 19 leaders will now compete at the national level for the prestigious Entrepreneur Of The Year National Awards, set to be presented in November at the annual Strategic Growth Forum. The overall national winner will then represent the United States at the World Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in June 2025.

This year’s regional winners were chosen by an independent judging panel made up of previous award winners, leading CEOs, investors, and other regional leaders, EY said, adding that the success of the program relies on their effort. These leaders reviewed and deliberated on the merits of each nominee.

The 2024 judges panel included Karen Aldridge, CEO of Rebel Athletic and 2020 regional award winner, and Dennis Cail, CEO of Zirtue and 2021 regional award winner. Maria Carell, CEO and president of Revision Skincare and Goodier Cosmetics, also lent her expertise as a 2022 regional award winner.

Abe Minkara, founding partner of Legacy Knight, and Nipa Nobel, CMO and co-founder of MTX Group and 2021 national award winner, contributed their insights. Bryan Perkins, CEO of Novaria Group and 2020 regional award winner, and Barbara Smith, CEO, president, and chairman of Commercial Metals Company and 2022 national award winner, were also part of the expert panel.

The judging panel was further strengthened by Juli Spottiswood, chairman of Onbe and 2021 regional award winner; Jay Still, CEO, president, and chairman of Guidon Energy and 2019 regional award winner; and Joe Urso, CEO, founder, and chairman of ActivePure Technologies and 2022 regional award winner.

The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year program, now in its 38th year, has expanded to nearly 80 countries and territories, celebrating over 11,000 visionary entrepreneurs in the U.S. alone.

The 2024 winners become “lifetime members” of a multi-industry, international community of entrepreneurs and have access to their alumni’s experience, knowledge, and wisdom, as well as that of other ecosystem members around the world.

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