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How Did You Do That?
14 minutes | Mar 30, 2021
How Chris Salm Went From Sausage Making To Commercializing University Research
On the latest installment of our series on entrepreneurship, How Did You Do That?, host Kathleen Gallagher speaks with Chris Salm about how he went from working at several large food companies to commercializing research out of UW-Madison.
16 minutes | Jan 6, 2021
How Rock Mackie Improved Radiation Therapy And Grew Successful Companies
Rock Mackie is a medical physicist who invented a safer type of therapeutic radiation, called tomotherapy, that delivers less radiation with just as much effectiveness. It has saved many lives.
17 minutes | Nov 23, 2020
How Glen Tullman Uses Digital Solutions To Address Health Care Challenges
Glen Tullman has an undergraduate degree in economics and psychology, spent a year in Oxford, England studying social anthropology, lived for a year with the Amish, and is a highly successful software entrepreneur. He's founded, grown or invested in more than 20 businesses.
17 minutes | Oct 26, 2020
How Lori Cross Drove Innovation Inside Corporations By Thinking Big & Acting Small
Lori Cross dropped out of her all-girls’ high school in Michigan because there wasn’t enough physics and math to keep her challenged. Technical college was a little better, but Cross found her place at Northwestern University, where she got a degree in chemical engineering and became the first woman to play ice hockey on a men’s NCAA team.
18 minutes | Sep 24, 2020
How John Splude Built A Software Company Out Of A Public Accounting Career
John Splude began his career in public accounting, auditing some of the biggest companies in the area. But he stayed involved with his firm’s smaller clients along with the Fortune 50 companies. And he became more and more interested in the operations side of the businesses.
17 minutes | Aug 28, 2020
How Robert Jordan Went From Truck Driver To Entrepreneur
Robert Jordan spent 20 years as a trucker, driving loads of cheese and other dairy products across the country. Over the miles he educated himself by listening to books on tape and spent hours thinking about how to solve some of the problems he encountered on the road.
18 minutes | Jul 28, 2020
How Ralph Kauten Leans Into Life Sciences Market Trends
Ralph Kauten is a true serial entrepreneur. He co-founded two life sciences companies that sold for a combined $200-plus million and was involved very early in three more. The biggest of those, Promega, has about $450 million of revenue and operations around the world.
17 minutes | Mar 25, 2020
How Loren Peterson Drove The Success Of A Drug Development Startup
Loren Peterson’s path to a successful startup company began on a Nebraska farm. It was a half-mile from the nearest neighbor, 1 mile from where his Swedish ancestors homesteaded, and several miles from the closest town of 600 people. He spent a lot of time hanging out with his two siblings, stacking hay and irrigating cornfields in 100-degree heat, and reading books from the school library and the Bookmobile.
14 minutes | Mar 2, 2020
How James Phelps Grew His Own Construction Company
James Phelps thought about starting his own business for a long time. He turned the idea over and over in his mind while: learning about the trades at Milwaukee Tech, working in the Milwaukee Public School district's facilities department, rehabbing houses on the side, getting his undergraduate degree in finance and finishing a commercial real estate certificate program.
18 minutes | Jan 16, 2020
How Lori Hoch Abandoned A Successful Law Career To Run A Startup
Lori Hoch graduated first in her class from University of Southern California law school, worked at two of Milwaukee’s biggest law firms, then became in-house counsel for the trust department of Wisconsin’s largest bank. She was on track for a comfortable corporate legal career.
17 minutes | Dec 19, 2019
How Jerry Jendusa Changed The Way Airplane Cabins Are Lit
Jerry Jendusa grew up working in the Waukesha pharmacy his dad operated for 33 years. It was there where he learned about being a business owner and having employees, customers, and a work ethic. So it was no surprise that Jendusa had the entrepreneurial itch. The surprise was the industry in which he chose to start his business.
18 minutes | Nov 18, 2019
How Laura King Grew A Risky Startup While Following Her Passion For Clinical Care
After graduating from the University of California, Davis with an economics degree, Laura King got a job in finance at General Electric (GE). She rose quickly through the ranks, and after a series of high-level jobs she was promoted to run GE Healthcare’s $1.2 billion interventional cardiology and surgery business. She also became an officer of the corporation.
17 minutes | Oct 28, 2019
How Justin Beck Built A Mobile Game Studio That Partners With Disney
When Google and Microsoft came calling with the type of jobs many young computer engineering graduates look for, Justin Beck turned them down. The 2009 graduate of UW-Madison wanted to stay in town and build the gaming studio PerBlue, which he started with his business partner, Andrew Hansen.
21 minutes | Sep 25, 2019
University Research & Startups Are 'Completely Synergistic,' says Entrepreneur Jignesh Patel
A native of Bombay, India, Jignesh Patel never touched a computer until he went to college. But he knew that computer science was an exciting area where a lot was happening, so he chose it as his major.
20 minutes | Aug 27, 2019
How Craig Culver Built A Thriving Restaurant Chain
After years of working day and night in his family’s businesses, Craig Culver decided he wanted to get out of the restaurant industry. But a four-year stint at McDonald’s corporate headquarters — first as a management trainee, then store manager — got him interested again.
16 minutes | Jul 23, 2019
How A Wisconsin Spine Surgeon Became A Successful Entrepreneur
Pete Ullrich was a young spine surgeon in Neenah, Wis., who wasn’t satisfied with the available tools. So he came up with a new one: a titanium spacer to put between vertebrae during spinal fusion surgery.
18 minutes | Jun 27, 2019
How Andy Nunemaker Went From Corporate Executive To Serial Entrepreneur
Milwaukee native Andy Nunemaker studied electrical engineering and business at some of our country’s top universities and held high-level jobs at two of its biggest companies. He got an undergraduate degree at Valparaiso and a master's degree at Georgia Tech, both in electrical engineering.
18 minutes | May 28, 2019
How Kevin Conroy Transformed Exact Sciences With Three Guiding Principles
After successfully growing and steering the $582 million sale of Madison-based Third Wave Technologies, Kevin Conroy went looking for another company to run. He found Exact Sciences — a struggling, publicly traded Massachusetts company with a DNA-based test for colon cancer that hadn’t been approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA).
20 minutes | Apr 22, 2019
How Mike Harris Jumped From No. 2 Job To Successful Entrepreneur
Mike Harris was a middle-class kid from Racine with no family history of entrepreneurship. He played it safe at UW-Parkside by studying accounting, then got a job as an auditor with Ernst & Young and became a Certified Public Accountant. However Mike’s appetite for risk grew when he got a job at Wind Point Partners, the venture capital fund led by the Johnson Wax family at the time.
17 minutes | Mar 25, 2019
How CEO Bob Atwell Created One Of Wisconsin's Largest Banks
Bob Atwell’s critical career decisions can be summed up in one word: contrarian.
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