U.S. News Ranks UC Irvine's Paul Merage School of Business
1st in Placement of Full-Time MBAs
As the 2009-2010 academic year comes to a close, we can look back upon it with the knowledge
that the Merage School flourished in one of the most challenging economies in history;
one that has truly tested the capabilities of our students, faculty and staff. We have emerged
with renewed respect for our institution and confidence in our future. As we prepare for 2010-
2011, we do so with an outstanding group of quality
students; a success rate in placing students in exciting
new careers that has put us at #1 in the rankings for
employment of MBA graduates three months after graduation; and a Full-Time MBA
About the Methodology
Each year, U.S. News and World
ranks professional school
programs in business,
education, engineering, law,
and medicine. These rankings
are based on two types of
data: expert opinions about
program quality and statistical
indicators that measure the
quality of a school's faculty,
research, and students. These
data come from surveys conducted
in fall 2009 of more
than 1,200 programs as well
as 12,400 academics and professionals.
The part-time MBA
ranking was based on surveys
of more than 300 business
schools conducted in fall
2009. More detail on the report
and methodology can be
found at usnews.com
program that recently moved up an impressive 15 spots to 36th on U.S. News and
annual ranking of America's Best Graduate Schools.
And there's more. U.S. News
also ranked our Executive MBA and Fully-Employed
MBA programs in the top 25 nationally among part-time business school programs.
Overall the Merage School ranked 16th among public university business schools,
19th in the nation for GPA, 23rd for acceptance rate, 29th for employment at graduation,
and 33rd for GMAT entrance scores.
Kudos go to our faculty, staff, alumni and friends, and especially to our incredible
students on this exciting news. It is further affirmation of the success of the initiatives
we have set into place to enhance our program to better meet the demands and
expectations of our business community. Our vision to be recognized among the top
public university research-based business schools in the country has clearly become
a reality. Even in the face of a very difficult economy, we have attracted talented, experienced,
and tenacious students who proved they could succeed.
As a leading business school, we expect to remain among the Top 50 schools as
we continue to define our vision and differentiate our programs, and graduate business
leaders with the exceptional ability to help grow their organizations through
strategic innovation. By utilizing input from our alumni and corporate partners, we are
continually focused on the caliber
of students we are bringing into
the program and we have enhanced our curriculum with a keen eye
toward the strategic innovation and global competitiveness, which
have helped to set our graduates apart in the job market.
What Does Success Look Like?
Picture an executive who is founder, principal and CEO of his own company; a Visionary
member of the Merage School's Dean's Leadership Circle; a top alumni recruiter for the
Merage School; coach for the MBA Management Practicum; member of the Don Beall
Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship; and newly appointed member of the Merage
School's Dean's Advisory Board for 2010. We'd like you to meet Alumnus Thomas
Antunez, FEMBA '05.
Recently Antunez shared his success with The Paul Merage School of Business in the
form of a $150,000 gift toward the Merage School Building Campaign.
to the Dean's Quarterly from The Paul Merage School of Business
MBA Program Information Sessions
invite prospective students for fulltime,
fully employed and executive
MBA programs starting in both fall
of 2010 and spring 2011.
JUNE 30, 2010 – ALUMNI
Professional Dress Seminar for
Women – Presented by Nordstrom
JULY 1, 2010 - ALUMNI
Professional Dress Seminar for
Men – Presented by Nordstrom
Strategic Issues in Management
AUGUST 5, 2010
BLUE OCEAN STRATEGY with
Dr. Zunaira Munir
AUGUST 19, 2010
SOCIAL MEDIA SURVIVAL SKILLS
with Scott Fox
SEPTEMBER 30, 2010
with Professor John Graham
OCTOBER 14, 2010
IMPROVING OPERATIONS with
Professor Tathagata Dasgupta
OCTOBER 28, 2010
BEING PRESIDENTIAL with Cherie
Advanced Program In
Resources & Business Leadership
AUGUST 25-26, 2010
Session 1 of 4
SEPTEMBER 22-23, 2010
Session 2 of 4
SEPTEMBER 11, 2010
Multi-Class Alumni Reunion 2010
Boeing's Jim Albaugh Named
Commencement Speaker for the
Merage School Class of 2010
Jim Albaugh, executive vice president of The
Boeing Company and president and CEO of Boeing
Commercial Airplanes, gave an inspiring commencement
speech during The Paul Merage
School of Business class of 2010 ceremony on
June 13 at the Bren Events Center on the UC
Irvine campus. Albaugh presented to a graduating
class of approximately 350 MBA students.
"Jim Albaugh was very impressive. His comments
on leadership were both insightful and meaningful to
our graduates," said Andy Policano, dean of The
Paul Merage School of Business. "He was also very
humble, giving much praise to Don Beall, his mentor
and our benefactor for the Beall Center, who was
also in attendance." (A copy of Albaugh's speech is available at merage.uci.edu.)
The Boeing Company currently employs more than 150 Merage School graduates.
"The Paul Merage School of Business has a well-earned reputation for graduating
top professionals," commented Albaugh during his speech. "It's a privilege to
be a part of their commencement exercises."
In his current position, Albaugh is responsible for all of Boeing's commercial airplane
programs and related services. Named to this position effective September 1,
2009, Albaugh is a member of the Boeing Executive Council and serves as Boeing's
senior executive in the Pacific Northwest.
Previously, Albaugh was president and chief executive officer of Boeing Integrated
Defense Systems, a business unit providing integrated solutions to meet
the needs of defense, space and intelligence customers in the United States and
around the world.
He also previously served as president and CEO of Boeing Space and Communications
(S&C), for four years. This unit merged in July 2002 with the company's
Military Aircraft and Missiles Systems unit to create Integrated Defense Systems.
Before leading Space and Communications, Albaugh was president of Boeing
Space Transportation, a predecessor unit that was folded into S&C. He assumed
that position after serving as president of Rocketdyne Propulsion & Power, part of
the Rockwell aerospace and defense businesses acquired by Boeing in 1996.
A Washington state native, Albaugh joined Boeing in 1975 as a project engineer
at its Hanford, Washington operations. He holds bachelor's degrees in mathematics
and physics from Willamette University and a master's degree in civil engineering
from Columbia University.
Helios Optics Solutions Takes First Prize
in 2010 Business Plan Competition
Competing against fifteen semi-finalists in the 2010 Business Plan Competition,
Helios Optics Solutions took home first prize and $15,000 following the Final Presentations
and Awards Ceremony held May 21. Coached by Goran Matijasevic, Director
of Research Development at UC Irvine's Henry Samueli School of Engineering, the
Helios team included Marshel Sheperd, Peter Li, Kaveh Azartash and Ryan Setzer.
Charter Class Alumnus and Former
Goodwill Industries CEO George
Kessinger Honored at 40th Annual
Lauds & Laurels Event
Former president and CEO of Goodwill
Industries International, George
Kessinger, was honored as a Distinguished
Alumnus of The Paul Merage
School of Business during the UC
Irvine Alumni Association's 40th Annual
Lauds & Laurels ceremony, held
May 13th at the Fairmont Newport
Kessinger, a member of the Merage
School's Executive MBA charter class
of 1987, was nominated for the prestigious
award by Professor Newt Margulies,
dean of the graduate school in
that year, and the Merage School's
current dean, Andy Policano. Kessinger gave more than 30 years of service to
Goodwill Industries, most recently as
the organization's national leader,
headquartered in Washington, D.C.,
from 2001 until 2008.
"We are indeed proud of George's
lifetime of accomplishments and leadership,"
said Dean Policano. "George's
career in the non-profit world is a credit
to his passion and commitment, and
we congratulate him for this welldeserved
"It is just a joy to me that Dr.
Margulies would think of me and of my
career and that Dean Policano would
nominate me for Lauds & Laurels," said Kessinger. "Newt was a champion
for the MBA program and for me. With
his support I was able to be enrolled
and with the knowledge gained from
the program I was able to move much
further in my career. I am deeply in
debt to the Merage School, UC Irvine
and to Newt."
Kessinger was appointed CEO of Goodwill Industries International in 2001.
During his tenure he initiated an organization-wide strategic planning process,
solidified the Goodwill Industries brand, and moved the organization onto a webbased
communications platform. As president and CEO of Goodwill Industries of
Orange County, he oversaw the 1999 launch of shopgoodwill.com, Goodwill's online
auction site. He also led Orange County Goodwill to establish the first Goodwill
Assistive Technology Exchange Center, create Kruzin Internet Services,
implement a $1 million Welfare-to-Work grant, and open new specialty Goodwill
"The confidence in the use of technology, the economics of the global marketplace,
an appreciation for a strong financial position and a strategic approach to
my work was gained from my MBA experience and really came through for me,"
commented Kessinger. "I am fortunate to have gained the knowledge and to
have had the opportunity to apply it, to the benefit of many, through Goodwill."
Since 1971, UCIAA and its Board of Directors have bestowed the association's
highest honor, Lauds & Laurels, to more than 600 individuals who have demonstrated
heartfelt dedication and commitment to the university.
A selection committee, composed of association volunteers and members of
the university community, determines the honorees from a pool of nominations
received from the campus and community. The UCI Alumni Association presents
the Lauds and Laurels Awards at formal ceremonies each spring.
The generous participation of alumni and friends in the Lauds & Laurels program
allows UCIAA to award more than $80,000 annually in scholarships to meritorious
undergraduate and graduate students so they may pursue their educational
goals at UC Irvine.
Hyundai Motor America CEO John Krafcik Speaks on Innovation
Participants Get a Glimpse of Hyundai's New Luxury Car Equus
John Krafcik, president and chief executive officer of
Hyundai Motor America, shared his insight on innovation and
leadership during the Distinguished Speaker Series held May
6. The event was hosted by the Center for Leadership and
Team Development at The Paul Merage School of Business
and presented by Bank of America. A crowd of more than
500 guests was among the first to get a glimpse of some of
the new Hyundai models on display.
Guests gather to get a look at Hyundai's new luxury car Equus.
"I'm pleased to have the opportunity to share Hyundai's
vision of innovation and leadership with the Merage School
and the MBA students," said Krafcik. "This is an exciting time for Hyundai as we strive to strengthen our position in
the U.S. and capture new market segments with innovative
As a demonstration of Hyundai's market strategy, Krafcik
brought with him three new Hyundai models including the upcoming
flagship Equus sedan, which will launch in late 2010
and demonstrates the company's approach to the luxury vehicle
market. Event participants had free access to view the
vehicles, many of which were making their first west coast
"We are honored that John Krafcik would share his leadership
insights and perspectives as he
leads Hyundai through innovation and
transformation," said Anna Liza Garcia,
associate director of the Center for Leadership
and Team Development. "John
and Hyundai's involvement with the
Distinguished Speaker Series is another
example of the caliber and quality of relationships
the Merage School has."
As president and CEO of Hyundai
Motor America, Krafcik is responsible for
implementation of strategic direction and
management of the company's operations.
Krafcik joined Hyundai in April of
2004 as vice president of Product Development
and Strategic Planning.
Krafcik holds a Bachelor of Science
degree in Mechanical Engineering from
Stanford University and a Master of
Science degree in Management from
the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Krafcik began his career in the auto industry
at the GM/Toyota joint-venture
NUMMI, and worked at Ford Motor
Company prior to joining Hyundai.
The Distinguished Speaker Series
highlights the innovation processes,
leadership perspectives, ethical frameworks,
decision-making practices and
insights of top business leaders. Each
of the four annual presentations attracts
as many as 500 corporate professionals,
community leaders, MBA
students, faculty members and campus
staff. The presenting sponsor for
the 2009-10 Series was Bank of America.
Other sponsors included Bingham
McCutchen LLP, Capital Group Companies,
Merage on the Move
Merage School Relay for Life Team Members (from left): Adam Whitescarver, Perry Leventhal, Raymond
Wan, Margo McEntee, Stephanie Blakeslee, George Goodman, and Jin Puertollano.
Merage School Team Takes
First Place in American Cancer
Society's Relay For Life
Congratulations to undergraduate
Merage School Business Admistration
majors who participated in the American
Cancer Society's Relay for Life.
Out of the 69 UC Irvine teams that
competed, Team Merage was
awarded first place in fundraising. In
addition, freshman Stephanie
Blakeslee took first place in individual
fundraising over more than 1,700 participants.
Among those on the winning
Jin Puertollano (Captain),
Raymond Wan, and Adam Whitescarver.
"What an exceptional group of students
we have," said Denise Patrick,
director of Undergraduate Programs for The Paul Merage School of Business.
"We are proud to have them represent
the Merage School community."
Three Members of the FTMBA
Class of 2011 Win Michael
Johnson School Spirit Award
Congratulations to John Converse,
Collin Paul, and Grant Seaton on winning
the Michael Johnson School
Spirit Award in recognition of their
leadership, service, and academic excellence.
Each of these students was
honored May 14 during the awards
dinner for this year's graduating
The award's namesake, Michael
Johnson, was one of the most charismatic
and talented students of the
Merage School's Full-Time MBA class
of 2006. Prior to attending business
school, Michael had a career in the
motor sport industry that included the
management and expansion of the
Lime Rock Raceway in Connecticut.
During his first-year in the MBA Program,
Johnson quickly made friends
and immediately established himself
as a leader on campus. Whether as
co-president of the Marketing Association
or simply as a friend to whom others
could turn for advice, Johnson
was always genuinely interested in
helping others. Additionally, Johnson
was an outstanding student and was
one of the first students to secure a
Tragically, Johnson passed away after an accident. His passing had a
profound effect on the entire school
and on everyone whose life he
touched. The previously named
"School Spirit Award" was renamed in
his honor as the "Michael Johnson
School Spirit Award" as one of the
ways The Paul Merage School of Business
honors Johnson's legacy.
Top Employers Welcome Merage School
Undergrad Students with Open Arms Regents' Scholar Adam Whitescarver
received an offer from Grant Thornton
within two hours of the interview concluding
and Emily Rong was selected
for KPMG's prestigious leadership
institute this summer!
"These are amazing stories, especially
since both of these students are
only in year two of their programs," said
Denise Patrick, director of Undergraduate
Programs at the Merage School.
Doctoral Student Kenji Klein
Nominated for Western Academy
of Management Award
doctoral student Kenji
Klein who was selected
as a finalist for
the Western Academy
Best Doctoral Student Paper Award
for his work titled, "Organizational
Community Interaction and Novel Form
Generation." The announcement was
made during the Western Academy of
Management's annual meeting held
this past March in Hawaii.
McLaughlin was recently
her students and inducted
as an honorary
member of the International
Golden Key Honour Society in
recognition of her commitment to
higher education and the tremendous job she has done in her capacity as a
Honorary membership in the International
Golden Key Honour Society is
granted in recognition of superior
scholarship in all undergraduate and
graduate fields of study. Membership
to Golden Key is gained by invitation
only and is extended to the top 15
percent of sophomores, juniors, seniors
and graduate students.
FEMBA '08, has been
appointed director of
Marangell brings to
the Merage School
more than 15 years of professional
experience in marketing, communications
and media management with a
background in diverse industries and
international corporations – from
start-ups to Fortune 100 companies –
all of which will contribute to her understanding
and serving our diverse
New Research, Books & Ideas
Data Draw a Clearer
Picture: New Analyses
of Chinese Census
Data Give Businesses
More Information When Choosing Locations
for Their China Operations,"
published in the March-April 2010
issue of chinabusinessreview.com
"Optimal Product Pricing
for an Assembly System
Under Supply Uncertainty,"
written by Professor Rick So
and PhD student
Wenting Pan, was accepted by Operations
The Academy of Management
accepted Professor Yu
Javier Gimeno's paper
titled, "Earnings Pressure
and Competitive Behavior: Evidence
from the U.S. Electricity Industry."
Merage School's Center for Real Estate Breaks Ground
on Urban Design Competition
Sean Rawson and Jason Ireland
Joining nearly 100 top universities
from around the country, The Center
for Real Estate (CRE), for the first time
sponsored a team to compete in the
prestigious Urban Land Institute (ULI)/
Gerald D. Hines Student Urban Design
Now in its eight year, the ULI Competition
offers graduate-level students
attending school in the United States
and Canada the opportunity to form
multidisciplinary teams and engage in
a challenging exercise in responsible
The Urban Design Competition is part
of ULI's ongoing effort to raise interest
among young people in creating better
communities, improving development
patterns, and increasing awareness of
the need for multidisciplinary solutions
to development and design challenges.
"It was an honor to represent the
Merage School and be among the first
to participate in this competition with
other top schools from around the
country," commented Merage School
MBA student team member Jason
Ireland. "I found it to be a fascinating
project that really helped me, and all
the team members, build skills and
learn to work with other disciplines –
more than just personalities. The experience
made all of us more aware of
how to approach a large-scale project,
not only from a finance perspective,
but from a development and planning
perspective as well."
Eligibility for the competition required
a multidisciplinary team of students.
The Center for Real Estate partnered
with UC Irvine's Department of Planning,
Policy and Design at the School
of Ecology and the Southern California
Institute of Architecture to compose its
team. Members included:
The Paul Merage School of Business
- Jason Ireland, FTMBA
- Sean Rawson, EMBA
UC Irvine, Department of Planning, Policy,
and Design at the School of Ecology
- Yu Xie – Masters in Urban and
Regional Planning, Department
of Planning, Policy and Design Southern California Institute of Architecture
- Karen Filippe – Masters of Urban
Design and Policy
- Robert Lisaukas, Masters of
Urban Design and Policy
Deans Professor of Finance Kerry
Vandell and Adjunct Professor Kevin
McKenzie provided guidance and
helped students prepare for the competition.
"This activity represents just one of
the Center's initiatives to provide young
leaders with extraordinary learning and
training opportunities to prepare them
for careers in the industry," said Sharon
Nakamura-Brown, associate director of
the Center for Real Estate, who assembled
the team members and managed
The Merage School team's proposal
involved planning for a 72-acre site in
downtown San Diego called "Grown in
East Village." The centerpiece of the
design included a Farmer's Market and
shopping mall similar to The Lab in
Costa Mesa. The plan also involved
progressive ideas like vertical farming,
urban farming and a pedestrian walkway
that extended through the middle
of the entire project.
"Our young team put together an
inspiring proposal and the experience
of competing was priceless. Next year
we'll be even stronger having a year's
experience under our belt," said Ireland.
"We'll take what we learned this
year and apply it. I really believe the
Merage School can become a strong
force in this competition."
Recession is Ending Says Chief Investment Strategist
for Charles Schwab & Company
Sonders presents Investment Strategies for Turbulent Times to a sold out crowd.
Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment
strategist for Charles Schwab & Co.,
Inc. spoke to a sold out crowd of
nearly 350 on May 12, with a theme of Investment Strategies for Turbulent
Times. Sonders opened the event,
sponsored by the Center for Investment
and Wealth Management at UC
Irvine's Paul Merage School of Business,
by stating, "I think the recession
is ending." She followed her statement
with the comment, "Being a contrarian,
I am very comfortable in my view if very few people share it."
Sonders supported her view on the
current state of the global economy
with an extensive and detailed discussion
that included "The Bear Case and
The Bull Case," along with a comprehensive
set of charts and information.
Sonders, a frequent guest on nationallypopular
broadcasts such as CNBC,
CNN, Fox Business News and others,
presented a thorough review of recent
market trends and contrasted them
both with historic data and up-to-date indicators of economic recovery.
According to Sonders' data, the
recession ended in June 2009, following
the bottom of the stock market,
which occurred in March 2009. She
noted, "The greatest weakness in the
recession occurred during the first
quarter of 2009, while the single best
quarter so far was Q4 of 2009.
"There are several indicators that we
are in a recovery mode," said Sonders.
"Inventories are building again and
consumer spending is on the rise.
Consumer spending pops before jobs
and feeds into recovery, not the other
way around as many people believe."
She added, "Corporate profits are outstanding.
We are seeing a profitability
Addressing the nationwide real estate
market, Sonders cautioned, "Interest
rates are not the only factor in
regaining traction in the real estate
market. It's more important to fix
asset demand." On the bright side,
Sonders indicated, "Commercial real
estate might not be the next shoe to
Sonders' presentation also included
a forecast on what investors and consumers
can expect. "We can certainly
expect tax increases, but we also have
to expect true spending cuts if the conditions
are to be established for the
economy to grow," she noted, adding,
"Inflation is not a disaster waiting to
happen." Sonders did identify a standoff
between the supply and demand
sides of the equation with borrowers
unwilling to borrow and banks less willing
Returning to her original point, Sonders
predicted a "V-shaped recovery"
and stated she believes the economy
is on the upswing. "A double dip recession,
or ‘W-shaped recovery' would
only occur if we have a major policy
mistake, like if the Fed raises rates
too soon or too late," she said. Sonders
believes the economy will move
from recovery into expansion, which would obviously be good news for investors.
Sonders, chief investment strategist
for Schwab, has a range of investment
strategy responsibilities reaching from
market and economic analysis to investor
education, all focused on the individual
investor. She chairs Schwab's
Investment Strategy Council, which
provides strategic asset allocation
guidance and tactical sector recommendations
for the firm's investor
base. The output of Sonders' work is
via written reports, audio and video
recordings, conference calls, and webcasts.
She is a regular contributor to
all of Schwab's client newsletters and
the keynote speaker at many of the
company's corporate and client events
in the United States and overseas.
She is also a keynote speaker at many
outside conferences, including for
NYSSA, CFA Institutes and IMCA.
Sonders is a regular guest on many
CNBC programs, as well as on ABC's Good Morning America and World
News Tonight, CBS's The Evening News and The Early Show, PBS's Lehrer News Hour and Nightly Business
Report, Fox Business News,
CNN, and Bloomberg TV & Radio. She
was a regular panelist and guest host
on PBS's Wall Street Week with Louis
Rukeyser. Sonders is regularly quoted
in The Wall Street Journal, Barron's,
New York Times, USA Today, Financial
Times, SmartMoney, Business Week, and Associated Press articles. In
2006, she was named one of Smart-
Money's "Power 30," their list of the
most influential people on Wall Street.
In 2009, she was selected by American
Banker as one of the year's "25
Most Powerful Nonbank Women in
Finance." Sonders was also named
best strategist of 2009 by Kiplinger's.
The Center for Investment and
Wealth Management and The Paul
Merage School of Business give special
thanks to Charles Schwab Advisor
Services and to the Merage School's
education partner, WISE (Women Investing
in Security and Education), for
their support of the event.
ALUMNI PROFILE: An Explosive Career
Chris McBee, EMBA ‘04
The Merage School is dedicated to the
principle that every graduate from our
program has the potential to make a
significant contribution both to their
profession and to society. Chris McBee,
EMBA '04, is one of those people.
A veteran in the security industry
with over 20 years of experience in
technical sales, marketing, and business
development, McBee is poised
to help usher in a new era in aviation
security. As the director of Sales and
Marketing for Syagen Technology, Inc.,
McBee is in the midst of launching an
exciting new product called the
Guardian® Explosive Trace Portal, a
new security checkpoint technology to
screen for hidden explosives.
"The satisfying part about working
for Syagen, and about this new product
in particular, is the fact that I have a
role in contributing to something that
may ultimately save lives and improve
the safety of commercial airline travel,"
said McBee. "It's a good feeling to be a part of something which can help
people while getting a chance to fulfill
my career goals. It's also satisfying to
be able to apply my scientific background
and the business skills I acquired
as an EMBA student to building
our company, while addressing a
pressing societal issue, such as terrorism."
McBee has leveraged his EMBA
experience to better understand financial
analysis and business strategy. A
significant benefit has been the confidence
he gained in his ability to operate
effectively in new areas of business development,
such as strategic planning
and mergers and acquisitions.
"I feel I gained a much broader understanding
of the business world at
the Merage School, which has helped
get me into the rhythm of business at
its most professional levels. I now feel
more a part of the professional business
community," said McBee.
Syagen Technology, Inc. is an entrepreneurial
technology company that applies
its proprietary trace detection
technology to the identification of explosives,
narcotics and other chemical
threats. The company's new Guardian®
Explosive Trace Portal is receiving rave
reviews. This past March, judges at
The Security Network's 7th Annual Security
Summit awarded Syagen "Most
Innovative Security Product" because
of the broad potential application of its
mass spectrometry detection technology
to homeland security requirements.
"The plan the Helios team presented was tremendously well thought out," said
Charles Baecker, director of the Don Beall Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
at the Merage School. "This group is well on its way to creating a viable business
that could have a great impact on ophthalmological care worldwide."
The Helios Optics Solutions team's presentation outlined plans to revolutionize
the way optometrists operate and diagnose common eye problems with a new
device called SunCrown. Using proprietary, patent-pending technology, SunCrown
clearly outperforms other methods in the diagnosis of dry eye syndrome, a problem
affecting nearly 40 million people in the U.S. and as many as 100 million people
worldwide. The new product has successfully met animal and initial human testing
milestones, and is expected to reach prototyping development soon.
Other teams winning business plan competition awards included:
SkyeRite – 2nd Place, Overall Competition, $7,500
AlcoGum – 3rd Place, Overall Competition, $2,500
nSTEM – Best Concept Paper, Overall Competition and Wild Card,
Tech Coast Angels Seed Financing Invitational
B&F Diagnostics – Wild Card, Tech Coast Angels Seed Financing Invitational
Panacea Wellness Solutions – Vator.tv People's Choice Award, $1,500
Powerscape – 1st Place, Undergraduate Division, $3,000 and
Wild Card, Tech Coast Angels Seed Financing Invitational
Jio Health – 2nd Place, Undergraduate Division, $2,000 and
Best Concept Paper, Undergraduate Division
The 2010 Business Plan Competition Final Presentations and Award Ceremony
was sponsored by Stradling Yocca Carlson & Rauth.
"As an entrepreneur, I realize creating a product, service,
or institution requires investments of time, capital,
and energy. Our mission at the Merage School is no different,"
said Antunez. "The Merage School is striving to
create an institution that personifies the social and business
impact that a Merage MBA can make locally and
globally. Our recent ascent in the business school rankings
is a lagging indicator of the successful path we are
executing. I will continue to support my alma mater with all
of my abilities, and in the process hope to inspire my fellow
alumni to contribute as well."
Antunez – a FEMBA '05 – is the first of the Merage
School's alumni to make a Building Campaign contribution,
and he is leading the charge to recruit others to join
him. In recognition of his extraordinary generosity, the
suite of offices occupied by the Fully-Employed MBA program
in the Merage School will be named in his honor.
"Thomas exemplifies the exceptional business leaders
we are training and developing at the Merage School. He
is a brilliant financial expert with exceptional drive, motivation
and generosity," said Merage School Dean Andy
Policano. "We are so proud of his achievements and his
commitment to our success."
Antunez's company, Percentix, is a management and
technology consulting firm specializing in the diagnosis,
design, delivery and deployment of Enterprise Performance
Management (EPM) solutions. Percentix was recently
acquired by Prithvi Information Solutions, Inc., a large IT
services company, for which Antunez now serves as senior
vice president. He also serves as an advisory board
member for Outcome Logic, a small software startup that
provides security solutions for the public, private and consumer
A graduate of the University of California, Riverside,
Antunez holds a BA degree in both Economics and Mathematics.
Antunez is certified in Hyperion Planning and Hyperion
Essbase, and is also a Six Sigma Certified
Professional. In 2008, he was named one of Orange
County's "Top 40 Business Leaders Under 40" by OC