University honors past directors of Entrepreneurship Center at luncheon

Xavier also honoring nine alumni entrepreneurs | January 3, 2007

The University is honoring four former directors of its Entrepreneurial Center (XEC) at its "Celebration of Entrepreneurial Success" luncheon on Jan. 24, at 12:30 p.m. in the Cintas Center. Xavier is also honoring nine alumni entrepreneurs. The banquet’s theme is "Mastery of 21st Century Technologies." Reservations can be secured by e-mailing Amanda Odom at wcbevents@xavier.edu. For sponsorship opportunities, contact the XEC director Tom Clark, at 513 745-2025 or clarkt@xavier.edu.

Each of the four directors is being recognized for the significant contributions made to Xavier’s entrepreneurship educational programs, which the Princeton Review has ranked as 11th best in the United States for the past three years.

Those being honored include:


  • Sandy Eustis (1986-1998), who founded and served as the center's first director. He also created Xavier’s undergraduate and M.B.A. programs in entrepreneurship, assisted hundreds of new or growing ventures through the start-up process, co-founded both the Greater Cincinnati Venture Association and the Hamilton County Business Center, and served as the chair of the department of management and entrepreneurship. Eustis was recognized as an Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 1995.

  • Bill Cunningham (1998-2000), who created the creativity and innovation course involving Doug Hall and the Eureka! Ranch and, with Eustis, secured a grant from the Coleman Foundation to fund the center's microloan program, which launched eight businesses between 1997-2000. Co-author of the SmallBizIdeas column for The Cincinnati Post and winner of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Educator of the Year award in 1999, he recently finished a six-year term as trustee and past-president of the Greater Cincinnati Venture Association and served as its representative to Innovest, Ohio’s premiere venture capital conference.

  • Ed VonderBrink (2000-2004), who served as director when the first student-owned and -operated business was opened on Xavier’s campus. He also oversaw the development of a minor in entrepreneurship, an entrepreneurial lecture series and the opening of an office/classroom in the Hamilton County Business Center. Prior to joining Xavier, he completed a 33-year career with Grant Thornton, where he was managing partner of the Cincinnati office and regional managing partner. In 1994, he was inducted into the Xavier University Williams College of Business Alumni Hall of Fame. VonderBrink serves on the Board of Streamline Health, NASQD and seven family business boards, including Bob Sumerel Tire, BASCO Shower Enclosures and Valley Interiors.
  • Sherrie Human (2004-2005), who teaches Managerial and Interpersonal Skills, New Venture Initiation and Family Business Issues. Human's research findings have been published in the Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, Journal of Management Education, Journal of Business Venturing, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Journal of Small Business Strategy and Journal of Small Business Management. Human recently received recognition for excellence in entrepreneurship teaching for leadership in re-designing the Xavier entrepreneurship academic program. The program introduced a number of curricular innovations that focus on student capacity building, engagement and ethical decision making. These innovations earned her first place in the 3E learning award competition, sponsored by the Kauffman Foundation, Georgetown University Center for Entrepreneurial Excellence and Delta Epsilon Chi.