HBS-NEO Harvard Business School Club of Northeastern Ohio HBS-NEO

Programs: George S. Dively Entrepreneurship Award


Photo from recent event.

Photo from recent event.

Photo from recent event.

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2017 Recipient: Paul Schumacher
Founder and CEO, Schumacher Homes

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Sustaining Explosive Growth - The Insiders' Views

This event is the must-attend entrepreneurial event of the year! Three fantastic entrepreneurs will talk about growing their companies at different stages.

Starting us off will be Lanham Napier, former CEO of Rackspace, a leading global provider of cloud services. A Texas boy at heart, Lanham joined this tech company as CFO when it had under $10 million in revenues, became CEO, and grew it to over a billion in revenues. During this time, he oversaw the conversion of a defunct mall into new, San Antonio headquarters, and took the company public. In the 2008-2010 time period, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft, all announced major entries into the cloud services space, and Rackspace had to evolve in order to compete. Lanham will talk about growing, through those industry dynamics, from $500 million to over a billion in revenues.

Entrepreneur Paul Schumacher will next tell us his growth story, especially growing at the $100 million to $500 million stage. Paul grew up in Canton, Ohio, home of the NFL Football Hall of Fame. After playing Division 1 football at University of South Carolina, he returned to his hometown and started his construction company on a wing and a prayer (plus a few credit cards). Paul and his team grew the company to be the largest custom homebuilder in America. Schumacher Homes has built 14,000 homes, serves 25 markets in 15 states, and is still going strong—it builds about 1,300 new homes per year. This company has systematically and passionately moved the custom home building market away from being only for the very wealthy and towards being well suited for the mid-tier home buyer.

Michael Keresman, co-founder and chairman of Cardinal Commerce, will talk about growing from $10 million to $100 million. Mike started Cardinal Commerce in 1999 and brought on an incredible leadership team that together helped it become an undisputed global leader in the very high growth market for enabling authenticated payments and secure transactions in the card-not-present market. Cardinal has processed over two billion financial transactions for customers since its founding, and last year one of the biggest financial brands in the world, Visa, acquired Cardinal. This is a market with explosive growth, and Mike will give us a terrific, insider's view on how to sustain it.

The three innovators will then do a roundtable discussion with investor, Lynn-Ann Gries. Lynn-Ann has for years been one of Northeast Ohio's most active seed and angel investors; she's done her due diligence on this year's innovators; and she knows how to ask hard questions. (You'll have an opportunity to ask questions, too!)

We'll end our evening by awarding Paul the 2017 Dively Award for his success growing a great company in Canton.

It's hard to get any one of these three company growers to have time to share their secrets, never mind all of them. This is an event that's absolutely jam-packed with tremendous "how-to-grow-a-company" lessons for entrepreneurs and business people. Students, entrepreneurs, and supporters alike will leave this year's Dively event with an intimate, insider's understanding of the ins and outs of creating and sustaining explosive growth.

Access this celebration of entrepreneurship—including food stations, open bar, and networking—for $55 (club members), $75 (non-members) or $40 (qualifying entrepreneurs*).


Wednesday, November 1st - 6:00 to 8:30pm


The Ritz Carlton
1515 W. 3rd St.
Cleveland, OH 44113


  • $55 - HBS Club Member or spouse
  • $75 - Non-members
  • $40 - Entrepreneurs*
  • $650 - Table of Ten

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This is one of the best opportunities of the year to spend time with entrepreneurs and ask them about their stories. The HBS Fund of Northeastern Ohio has generously granted money to this Dively entrepreneurship event. You'll see on the registration page that entrepreneurs* receive special pricing. However, spaces are limited, so please request seats early.

* For these purposes, we define entrepreneurs as people who are growing a company that is under $1 million in annual revenues and have launched, are launching, or will launch an innovative product or service.

Students of Entrepreneurship

The HBS Fund of Northeastern Ohio supports business education in Northeastern Ohio. The fund supports this event by enabling you to attend for free, as long as you're joined by a professor of business or entrepreneurship. Please have your professor contact the club and suggest who will be joining. Maximum of Five students per professor.

About the Dively Entrepreneurship Event

George Dively, one of Northeast Ohio's greatest entrepreneurs, served as chairman and CEO of the Harris Intertype Company as it grew from $10 million to $2 billion. He wanted America to celebrate entrepreneurs, and he left this regional event and award as a part of his entrepreneurial legacy. HBS-NEO has selected Failed, Fired, & Succeeded as its theme this year and Rocco Di Lillo as its 2016 Dively Entrepreneurship honoree.

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Past Recipients:

1983 Samuel J. Franklino
Agency Rent-A-Car
1984 A. Malachi Mixon, III
1985 Milton Maltz
Malrite Corporation
1986 Robert F. Meyerson
Raymond D. Meyo
Telxon, Inc.
1987 Tinkham Veale, II
Charles W. Walton
Sudbury, Inc.
1988 Thomas A. Cutter
Robert S. Kendall
Michael R. Kennedy
LDI Corporation
1989 Craig E. Hons
James L. Schiering
Russell A. Smith
James A. Terwoord
Action Auto Rental
1990 Eric Nord
Nordson Corporation
1991 Arnold M. Miller
Matrix Essentials, Inc.
1992 Michael Feuer
1993 Thomas G. Murdough
Step 2 Corporation
1994 Bill R. Sanford
STERIS Corporation
1995 Jack Kahl
Manco, Inc.
1996 William E. Conway
Fairmount Materials, Ltd.
1997 Jon H. Outcalt
Kevin B. Shaw
NCS Healthcare
1998 Wayne Hellman
Advanced Lighting Technology
1999 Monte Ahuja
Transtar Industries
2000 James P. Mooney
OM Group
2001 David T. Morgenthaler
Morgenthaler Venture Partners
2002 Dan T. Moore
Dan T. Moore Companies
2003 John Osher
2004 Emergency Medicine Physicians
2005 Hyland Software
2006 Dealer Tire
2007 Ray Dalton
2008 James Hummer
Whole Health Management
2010 Kenneth Ricci
Flight Options
2011 Charles Hallberg
2012 The Harrington Family
Edgepark Medical Supplies
2013 Robert J. Shearer
Shearer's Food, Inc.
2014 TransDigm Group, Inc.
2015 Explorys
2016 Rocco DiLillo
2017 Paul Schumacher
Schumacher Homes


Help the club identify and recognize Northeastern Ohio's entrepreneurs. Nominate your choice as the outstanding entrepreneur for the 2017 George S. Dively Award.

Selection Criteria:

The Dively Entrepreneurship Award is granted annually to an individual or company in Northeast Ohio based on the demonstration of substantial success as an entrepreneur or entrepreneurial company. Success should be demonstrated by rapid and solid growth in the size and profitability of the organization over the last five years, as well as by having achieved a position of significance in the marketplace addressed.

I nominate the following person for the 2017 George S. Dively Entrepreneurship Award:


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