July 1, 2012

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Tori Baker: Leading Lady of Salt Lake’s Art House Theater

Mark Meadows: Enjoying the Journey

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Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year

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Editor's Note
Utah’s Tech Industry is Booming

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Industry Outlook
Technology Industry Outlook


Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year

Candace Little

July 1, 2012

Caldwell grew SecurityMetrics from a five-person company to a 400-person team and established SecurityMetrics as a preeminent standard in data security.

What has surprised Caldwell most is that, “It’s not about money. It’s about people.” This is something he has put into practice. Within the last three years, Caldwell has expanded SecurityMetrics’ customer service team 640 percent to meet the rising standard of card data security. He is also consistently providing opportunities for his own staff to learn and expand their realm of influence.

Jeff Johnson
CEO, Progrexion

Progrexion was formed to provide sophisticated software and other back-end services to credit repair firms. Jeff Johnson was hired as CEO in 2009 and was tasked with leading the business out of stagnation and into the unknown effects of the recession. Johnson implemented new organization and initiatives and overhauled Progrexion’s marketing operations.

Two years after Johnson took the helm, the company had grown 40 percent. Progrexion is now a nationally respected market leader, generating revenues in excess of $100 million annually, providing services to more than 100,000 clients and employing nearly 1,000 people.

Progrexion’s technology and support services enable consumers to repair their credit and realize their financial dreams, and that is evident in the thank you letters from Americans that cover its walls. The company is currently in the process of creating a long-term plan that will involve substantial resources and support, coordinating with key consumer groups to promote fairness in credit reporting.

Ken Bretschneider
Founder and Executive Chairman of the Board, DigiCert, Inc.

“I’m passionate about entrepreneurship and the possibilities that it provides for improving situations, communities and living,” says Ken Bretschneider. “Particularly, as the American dream has seemed to decline in some people’s minds, I’m motivated to succeed and to help mentor young people to believe in their dreams. I believe strongly in capitalism and that business done right makes a difference, and I want to re-instill that belief in others to fulfill their goals and make a difference in the world through entrepreneurship.”

From video game and web development to film production and visual effects studios, to cause-driven businesses, Bretschneider’s entrepreneurial impact is real. His hallmark achievement to date is DigiCert. Founded in 2003, DigiCert has competed with the industry’s established players to become the world’s third-largest issuer of high-assurance digital certificates using Secure Socket Layer technology and protects major websites such as Facebook, Yahoo! and Wikipedia.

Eric Bjorklund
President, Utah Youth Village

The mission of Utah Youth Village is to change the lives of troubled children and their families—a mission that has continually inspired President Eric Bjorklund.                               

“I became an entrepreneur in order to diversify the funding streams for Utah Youth Village so that we can help many more poor families who are seeking help for their children,” he says.

Bjorklund is especially proud of Utah Youth Village’s Families First program, which he says “is as close as we have seen to a ‘silver bullet’ in the area of child welfare.” 

In a random, controlled study, the children of the families that received Families First services were substantially better off (even eight months later) than the control children. Utah Youth Village’s entrepreneurial efforts (with Alpine Academy) will help provide Families First services to more than 200 families this year.

Jeremy Christensen, LCSW
CEO, Valley Services, Inc.

Jeremy Christensen is passionate about helping individuals with mental illnesses. Before finishing graduate school, Christensen had researched, obtained funding and implemented a computer education program that assists people with mental illness find employment. Today he serves as the CEO of Valley Services, where he is able to help many with his innovations and passionate drive.

Valley Services employs individuals with chronic mental illness, co-occurring substance addiction, learning disorders and other disadvantages such as chronic homelessness. In his role as CEO, Christensen has formed many relationships with community and government entities that support his mission. He has also been able to diversify the jobs offered to individuals with mental illnesses and has continued to improve the quality of life of the workers, as well as reduce the need for some government-funded mental health services. 

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