Extension News

Community Vitality Center of Iowa State University Extension Honored with Venture Award


AMES, Iowa -- The Iowa Area Development Group, on behalf of Iowa’s rural electric cooperatives and member municipal electric systems, has honored eight distinguished Iowa companies with the Iowa Venture Award.  The Iowa Venture Award is among the most enduring and prestigious business recognition events in Iowa.  More than 180 of Iowa’s finest business leaders and companies have been recognized and honored since the program began in 1988.  

The 2010 “Distinguished Leadership Venture Award” was presented to the Community Vitality Center, Iowa State University Extension, in recognition of leadership in the development of the Iowa Microloan Program and in assisting Iowa communities and foundations with entrepreneurship, development issues and philanthropic opportunities. Since its inception, the Community Vitality Center has focused on entrepreneurship, community-based philanthropy and regionalism as catalysts for building healthier and wealthier Iowa communities.  

The center’s leadership initiatives and credits include:  funding more than 60 rural demonstration projects throughout Iowa, original research and in-depth studies such as the “Iowa Wealth Transfer Study," a study that was instrumental in gaining passage of the Endow Iowa legislation, creating 85 countywide community foundations for our state.
“The Iowa Venture Award is highly regarded as a business achievement and recognition awards program with a strong history.  IADG has recognized Iowa’s leading companies, large and small, that have helped sustain and grow the Iowa economy.  Iowa Area Development Group, on behalf of our sponsors, is honored to recognize these outstanding companies that are investing in our state,” said IADG president, Rand Fisher. 

“Each year we honor business leaders and entrepreneurs with the Iowa Venture Award. Our luncheon ceremony allows our sponsors to thank these accomplished companies for their commitment to Iowa through innovation, investment and job creation,” added Fisher. Since 1985 the economic development efforts of IADG and their sponsoring utilities have helped generate more than $5.6 billion of capital investment and create or retain nearly 40,000 jobs for Iowa.   
The 2010 “Outstanding Business of the Year” Venture Award was presented to Hawkeye Pride Egg Farm in Corwith, Iowa.  The Hawkeye Pride project is located southeast of Corwith in Hancock County. When the project reaches completion, the site will consist of 10 poultry buildings containing 6.2 million birds with egg production output of approximately 5 million eggs per day.  

Venture Awards also were presented to six other businesses for their significant contributions in diversifying and developing Iowa’s economy:  Buresh Building Systems, Inc., Hampton; Ewing Land Development and Services, Pella;  Green Plains Superior Ethanol, Superior ; TigerHawk Plastics Inc., Keosauqua; Puck Custom Enterprises Inc., Manning; and Monsanto located in Boone. Lt. Gov. Elect Kim Reynolds assisted IADG in presenting the Iowa Venture Awards.

Iowa Area Development Group is the business and community development leader for Iowa’s rural electric cooperatives and member municipal electric utilities. The 2010 Iowa Venture Awards ceremony was held in conjunction with the Iowa Association of Electric Cooperatives’ annual meeting in West Des Moines on Dec. 2.


Contacts :

Mark Edelman, Community Vitality Center,  515-294-6144, medelman@iastate.edu

Bruce Hansen, Iowa Area Development Group, 800-888-4743, bhansen@iadg.com

Willy Klein, Extension Communications and External Relations, 515-294-0662, wklein@iastate.edu

VentureAwardsCVC.jpg 1.6 MB

Caption: Community Vitality Center, Iowa State University Extension received the  “Distinguished Leadership” Venture Award recognizing the organization for supporting entrepreneurism and philanthropy in rural Iowa.  Lt. Gov. Elect, Kim Reynolds,  presented the award on behalf of the Iowa Area Development Group L.C., (IADG). Pictured left to right: Rand Fisher, President, IADG; James Erb; Carol Smith; Mark Hamilton; Lt. Gov. Elect Kim Reynolds; Mark Edelman, Director, Community Vitality Center (CVC); Jane Halliburton; Ken Beekley; Rita Frahm; and Craig Downs.