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New Mentor Brings Industry and Teaching Expertise

September 14, 2011 - 3:27pm    admin


Join us in welcoming Denise Durenberger as Executive Director for the Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs (BCE). Denise is an assistant professor of business at Bluffton University and resides in Arlington.

While her teaching responsibilities started with the fall semester, Denise graciously agreed to begin her mentoring relationships at the BCE this past June.

Denise succeeds interim advisor Pete Suter who, with Business Studies department chair George Lehman, helped create the partnership that provides BCE clients with mentoring services and coordinates projects with business majors. She notes, "I'm pleased by the interaction I've had so far with our BCE clients and our Bluffton University students. Both clients and students are optimistic and interested in working together to find meaningful ways to grow."

In the past year, Bluffton University students assisted J. Bankert Bookkeeping with logo design and KTL Fabrication with marketing development. New projects are planned for Drive Time Driving and Peak 24 HR Fitness, which will focus on market research and social media development.

Denise brings both industry and academic experience to her new position. She has served as marketing instructor at Terra Community College, marketing coordinator at Hercules Tire, advertising manager at Cooper Tire, assistant director of professional experience at the University of Findlay, and marketing director at J.J. Gumberg Company (Findlay Village Mall). She holds a B.S. in journalism, public relations and marketing from Bowling Green State University and an M.B.A. from the University of Findlay.

Bluffton University Students Win BIG Idea Prize

May 11, 2011 - 2:02pm    admin


Four new Bluffton University graduates—three of them from Berne, Ind.—created an entrepreneurial venture that recently won the BIG Idea contest sponsored by the Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs (BCE).

Remark Engineering, a design and marketing venture, was launched by Carter Sprunger, Bracton Eicher and Gregg Beitler, all from Berne, and Kenneth Miller, from Millersburg, Ohio. Sprunger, Remark’s chief operating officer, said he, Eicher and Miller were inspired by entrepreneurial stories they heard at last November’s Mennonite Economic Development Associates (MEDA) conference in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

March 11, 2010 - 9:06am    admin

The 2010 Business Plan Competition kicks off on April 1 with the first of 10 seminars and culminates in June with more than $3000 in prizes.


The combined seminar series and competition will teach participants to write a business plan that will improve an existing business or successfully start a new one. The contest is open to entrepreneurs, start-ups, and emerging businesses (less than 3 years old) in Northwest Ohio.

M2 Interiors & Design Awarded Top “Big Idea” Prize

March 11, 2010 - 9:02am    admin

Mary Maas of M2 Interiors & Design LLC, Bluffton, has won first place in the regional Big Idea contest for entrepreneurs. Maas has been awarded a $1000 prize for her Aging in Place concept, which includes designs and principles that help clients remain in their homes as they grow older and their needs and abilities change.

Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs Elects New Board Officers

September 2009

The Bluffton Center for Entrepreneurs (BCE) elected its new executive officers at their second annual meeting, Friday, September 11, at Bluffton Village Hall. New committee members include: Brendon Matthews, president; Fred Steiner, vice-president; Dave Steiner, treasurer and Richard McGarrity, secretary. The executive committee will serve on the board for the next year and will control and manage the affairs of the organization.

Since January, the center has obtained 10 clients; creating and retaining 11 jobs in the four county area.  Executive Director, John Bauer, describes his plans for the organization to become self-sufficient by finding alternative sources to achieve revenue. Bauer also states that the organization “hopes to obtain an additional 12 clients in the next few months.”

BCE is a not-for-profit regional business support center offering professional assistance and customized mentoring to entrepreneurs and small businesses, especially during their first few years in the business. The center offers its clients with the skills needed to survive in today’s economy, by providing a variety of opportunities for training, coaching, networking and financing.

News 2009-2011
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