INDIANAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bob Compton, a venture capitalist and entrepreneur who has been involved with numerous Indiana companies over the past twenty years, will be honored with the Cy Smith Award for entrepreneurship by the Venture Club of Indiana.
Governor Mitch Daniels will present Compton with the award on February 7th, at the Venture Club’s monthly luncheon. The award is named for Cy Smith, a former member of the Venture Club of Indiana’s board of directors and long-time entrepreneur who died in 1999. Recipients of the award must demonstrate a willingness to contribute time and talent to organizations that support entrepreneurship, passionately mentor entrepreneurs through the growth and development of their businesses, and minimize personal recognition in favor of building the strength and character of others.
“Bob is a distinguished professional who knows what it takes to be successful in business,” said Governor of Indiana Mitch Daniels, “and now he is making his mark on public policy – through his creation of the documentary Two Million Minutes. I hope his efforts to bring new attention to the challenges of educating the country's youth will serve as a foundation for a national conversation.”
The presentation of the award to Compton in February is especially timely, as that month marks his twenty year anniversary of investing in Indiana’s businesses. No other single person has invested more money and in more Indiana companies than Bob Compton. His twenty-year commitment to Indiana is astounding, and his track record for believing, supporting and investing in successful businesses is unparalleled – Software Artistry (public then acquired by IBM), Aprimo (has filed IPO), Exact Target (has filed IPO), Interactive Intelligence (NASDAQ:ININ), Vontoo, Indian Math Online, and Compendium Blogware are only a sampling of the companies he’s been involved with. In 1994, Compton was named one of "40 Under 40" influential people in Indianapolis by the Indianapolis Business Journal.
Karen Lytle, a former colleague of Compton’s at CID Equity Partners, describes what it was like to work with him: “Bob is an incredibly smart, passionate man who has a great talent for taking an idea, a method, and the right people to result in a successful venture. He always moved at a pace that left many people in the dust, but he was constantly coaching other entrepreneurs – and taking them under his wing – to make them better.”
Not only has Compton been involved in numerous Indiana companies, but he has also been instrumental in starting and contributing to several entrepreneurial learning programs, including an entrepreneurial internship program he pioneered at Rose Hulman, which was adopted nationally by over 300 universities through the Ewing Kauffman Foundation. He has also been involved with bringing entrepreneurship education to even grade schools students – seeking to plant the idea for entrepreneurship and business ownership at a very early age. In 1995, Compton led and helped fund the effort to build the first Exchange City (www.exchangecityusa.com) in Indianapolis housed at Junior Achievement. Through his investment of money, time and leadership, over twenty-three Exchange Cities were built around the country in the next ten years and more than one million 5th graders have participated in this hands-on economics, entrepreneurship and business education program.
The Indiana Venture Club’s February 7th luncheon, at which Compton will be presented with the Cy Smith Award, will take place at 11:15 am at Barnes & Thornburg, located at 11 S. Meridian Street.
About Bob Compton
Bob Compton is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist who has invested in numerous companies over the past twenty years. He started his career with IBM, and after attending Harvard Business School began the venture capitalist portion of his career. He now serves on numerous company boards and has just recently released his first documentary film. Titled Two Million Minutes, the film takes an in-depth look at secondary education in the United States as compared with India and China and examines the implications this may have on the U.S. position in the global economy during the 21st century. Two Million Minutes is currently screening across the country. For more information, please visit www.2mminutes.com.