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Automation Alley Places Second Group Of Adams Fellows With Early-Stage Companies

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Automation Alley headquarters in Troy

Automation Alley headquarters in Troy

(credit: istock) Technology Report
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TROY — The host organization for the Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship Program, Automation Alley, Michigan’s largest technology business association, has placed a second group of fellows with Southeast Michigan early-stage companies.

The Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship provides a unique opportunity for recent college and university graduates to engage with startups at the management level in a highly entrepreneurial experience. The latest batch of fellows includes Dan Blue, Cynthia Hoffman, Douglas Rimatzki and Sean Sullivan.

“Our second cohort of fellows have a wealth of prior entrepreneurial experience. We’re excited to see what ideas and innovations each will bring to the host companies,” said Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship Managing Director Terry Cross – a serial entrepreneur and investor with deep experience in identifying, coaching and placing young entrepreneurs.

The fellows have daily job responsibilities and will be encouraged to participate in local entrepreneurial, business development and leadership events, taking advantage of the many programs already in existence in Southeast Michigan. In particular, fellows will be given opportunities to network with one another and with other young emerging leaders in the region.

Dan Blue is a graduate of Michigan State University with a bachelor’s in international relations and a minor in Arabic. Blue also participated in a 10-week study abroad at the American University in Cairo at the Arabic Language Institute’s intensive language program. Blue has joined Detroit-based Stik.com and will wear many hats to help the social media startup strengthen its following. Stik.com brings word-of-mouth recommendations for local businesses online through Facebook. Blue’s previous entrepreneurial experience includes guiding Detroit-based startup Powervoice LLC through transition as CEO to develop a new business model, launch a beta product and bring on early clients.

Cynthia Hoffman earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Wayne State University and is working toward her Ph.D. at WSU in instructional technology, where she maintains a 4.0 GPA. She was matched with Coliant Corporation, a startup in Warren, and is responsible for sales and marketing at the corporate level. Hoffman’s previous entrepreneurial experience includes a year at Detroit-based startup Clean Emission Fluids Inc.

Douglas Rimatzki holds a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from the University of Michigan and a Master of Business Administration degree from The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at U-M. Prior to signing on as an Adams Entrepreneur Fellow, Rimatzki founded and operated consulting company Entrepreneurial Ventures and has 20 years of experience in medical device technology. Rimatzki has been matched with ENT Biotech Solutions LLC.  ENT is commercializing a device to remove adenoids through a greatly improved process that will have significant positive outcomes for patients.

Sean Sullivan holds a bachelor’s degree from Grove City College in Pennsylvania and owns a Web-based company called Shadoodle LLC. Sullivan has won several business plan contests and business pitch competitions. His experience includes working for a consulting company where he was assigned to the Ford Motor Co. Quality Center. During his fellowship, Sullivan will be working with Troy-based solid-state lighting technology company TOGGLED, a subsidiary of Altair.

The Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship Program was created through the support of the Ann and Carmen Adams Fund of the Community Foundation. Fellowships are awarded each year through a competitive application process. The Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship provides an annual stipend, including benefits, placement in a startup enterprise, ongoing mentoring and coaching and engagement in entrepreneurial development workshops.    Four fellows entered the program in 2012 and took positions at emerging tech startups across metro Detroit, including Are You A Human in Detroit, Larky in Ann Arbor and Billhighway in Troy. One fellow used the opportunity to develop his own company, which he started through the Blackstone LaunchPad program at Wayne State University, located at TechTown in Detroit.

For more information on the Adams Entrepreneur Fellowship Program, contact the Automation Alley Resource Center at (800) 427-5100 or adamsfellow@automationalley.com.

Since its founding in 1999, Automation Alley has expanded to include nearly 1,000 businesses, educational institutions and government entities from the city of Detroit and the surrounding eight-county region. Automation Alley promotes regional prosperity through entrepreneurial and exporting assistance, workforce development and technology acceleration.   For additional information, visit automationalley.com.

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