Awards Luncheon Honors Area Mentors

Thinking Bigger Business Media and the Helzberg Entrepreneurial Mentoring Program presented the first-ever Kansas City Business Mentoring Awards yesterday during a luncheon at the Sheraton Overland Park. The awards were launched to recognize the importance of mentoring and to honor individuals for their mentoring efforts.

The Corporate Mentor of the Year Award honors a corporate professional who mentors employees within his or her own organization. The Entrepreneurial Mentor of the Year Award recognizes someone who is currently and actively mentoring an entrepreneur.

The awards luncheon, held in conjunction with the annual HEMP retreat, also featured a talk on Conscious Culture by keynote speaker John Mackey, the co-founder of Whole Foods.

HEMP President Bill Hartnett and Thinking Bigger Business Media CEO Kelly Scanlon presented the Corporate and Entrepreneurial Mentor of the Year awards from among several finalists.

Corporate Mentor of the Year Award finalists included:

  • Ron Davis, Harvest Productions
  • Kara Larson, KCP&L
  • Mike Yardley, VML

The award was presented to Ron Davis.

The Entrepreneurial Mentor of the Year Award finalists included:

  • Bob Brush, a longtime mentor with HEMP and a former Hallmark executive
  • Walt Rychlewski, a retired serial entrepreneur and a HEMP volunteer
  • Elisa Waldman, the regional director of the Kansas Small Business Development Center at Johnson County Community College

Bob Brush received the award.

The final award of the afternoon was HEMP’s Lifetime Achievement in Entrepreneurial Mentoring, which Barnett Helzberg and Hartnett presented to Chuck Hoffman, president and CEO of Hoffman Management Corp.