Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards

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Forty outstanding foreign-born business owners were celebrated at the seventh annual ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Dinner on May 3, 2018, at the Royal Sonesta Boston in Cambridge, MA. Featured speaker Massachusetts Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Jay Ash paid tribute to the 40 nominees from 24 countries for starting businesses in 19 Massachusetts towns.

 

Do you know an outstanding immigrant entrepreneur? Tell us about them here.

2018 ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Award Winners

Business Growth

Fausto Garcia

Dominican Republic

With nearly 20 years of experience in the metal anodizing and finishing industry, Fausto Garcia left the security of a good-paying job to open Five Star Plating in 2010. Starting with five employees, the company now employs 42 in Lawrence with a retention rate of nearly 100 percent. The company’s revenue has grown by more than 10 percent every year since inception.

Neighborhood Business

Umesh Bhuju

Nepal

Umesh Bhuju went from a certified mountain guide in Nepal’s Himalayas to a business owner on the coast of Massachusetts. In 2003, he opened Zumi’s Espresso hoping to prove that business can be profitable while promoting positive social and environmental change. Today, his shop is the social center of downtown Ipswich with art shows, music, lectures and fair-trade, organic coffee.

High-Tech Business

Bettina Hein

Germany

Bettina Hein is the founder of two successful technology companies: SVOX, which was acquired in 2011 for $125M, and Pixability, which launched in 2008. Pixability simplifies digital video for marketers with patented technology that allows them to reach the right consumers across platforms. She also created SheEOs, a Boston-based network of female founders and CEOs that meets monthly.

Life Science Business

Michael Koeris

Germany

Michael Koeris co-founded Sample6 to secure the global food supply chain by improving the way food production is tested for bacterial pathogens, which currently make one in five Americans sick every year. The synthetic biology-based technology they developed can detect dangerous pathogens before food reaches the market. He also co-founded BiotechStart.org, a not-for-profit that helps biotech startups build their businesses faster.

Judging

The ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards selection committee reviewed nominations and selected one winner in each category. The 2018 selection committee members were:

Business Growth

  • Debi Kleiman, Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship, Babson College
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • David Parker, Entrepreneurship for All
  • Jose Luis Rojas Villarreal, Boston Private Bank

Neighborhood Business

  • Leandro Freire, Accion
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • Theresa Park, City of Lawrence
  • Saritin Rizzuto, Metro Credit Union

High-Tech Business

  • Doug Banks, Boston Business Journal
  • Abi Barrow, Massachusetts Technology Transfer Center
  • Kathleen Hagan, Hagan and Company
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • Julianne Zimmerman, Reinventure Capital

Life Science Business

  • Lauren Celano, Propel Careers
  • Alison Farquhar, GTL Coaching & Consulting, LLC
  • Bonnie Fendrock, Cyta Therapeutics, Inc.
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.

2018 Nominees

View the slideshow below to meet each of the outstanding nominees.

 

Previous Nominees and Winners

Two hundred and twenty-nine Massachusetts business owners and innovators from 65 countries have been nominated and recognized for their outstanding accomplishments in the seven years of The ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards.

  • Fitzroy Alexander, Traditional Breads Inc., Lynn (2014 WINNER)
  • Herby Duverné, Windwalker Group, Boston (2016 WINNER)
  • Wendy Estrella, Estrella Law Firm, Lawrence (2016)
  • Eduardo & German Fernandez, Brothers Market, Inc., Dorchester (2016)
  • Francisco Fernandez, Happy Supermarket, Dorchester (2016)
  • Boppanda Ganapathy, Boston Services, LLC, Burlington (2018)
  • Fausto Garcia, Five Star Plating, Lawrence (2018 WINNER)
  • Jose Garcia, Ebi Sushi in Somerville, Sapporo Ramen in Cambridge and Sushi Kappo in Boston (2018)
  • Rafael Guzman, RM Technologies, Inc., Lawrence (2013 WINNER)
  • Elias and Juana Interiano, El Potro Mexican Bar & Grill in Lowell, Malden and Somerville (2018)
  • Venkat Kolluri, Chitika Inc./Cidewalk, Westborough (2015)
  • Marc-Andre Lebel, FRX Polymers, Inc., Chelmsford (2016)
  • Christine Lin, The Cambridge Institute of International Education, Waltham (2014)
  • Yan Liu, TVision Insights in Boston (2018)
  • Charbel Najem, Capstone General Contracting, Worcester (2014)
  • Ravi Meruva, IconSoft, Burlington (2015)
  • Lisandra Mones, Glitterati Style, Salem (2013)
  • Vijay Nalamada, Avco Consulting, Worcester (2017)
  • David Nguyen, US Bedding Inc., Fall River (2017)
  • Larry O’Toole, Gentle Giant Moving Company, Somerville (2016)
  • Hitendra Patel, IXL Center, Cambridge (2016)
  • Dmitriy Peregudov, GiftBasketsOverseas.com, Arlington (2014)
  • Daniel Perez, DPV Transportation Worldwide, East Boston (2017)
  • Jose de la Rosa, Guardian Healthcare, Jamaica Plain (2017 WINNER)
  • Tony Salem, Sea-Dar Construction, Boston (2016)
  • Ashish Sangani, GIRI Hotels, Quincy (2012)
  • Julia Silverio, Silverio Insurance, Lawrence (2012, WINNER)
  • Amir Shiranian, Amelia’s Taqueria, Inc., Boston and Brighton (2017)
  • Helene and Thomas Stohr, swissbakers, Allston and Reading (2015 WINNER)
  • Sushil Tuli, Leader Bank, N.A, Arlington (2012)
  • Paolo Volpati-Kedra, Sauces ‘n Love, Inc., Lynn (2013, 2015)

Fitzroy Alexander

Boppanda Ganapathy

Rafael Guzman

Thomas Stohr

Herby Duverne

Fausto Garcia

Jose de la Rosa

Helene Stohr

  • Rosemary Agbede, Unique You Salon, Lowell (2013)
  • Maria Alcantara, Lawrence Training School, Inc., Lawrence (2018)
  • Adolfo Alvarado, Tu Y Yo Mexican Restaurant, Somerville (2018)
  • Victoria Amador and Rosa and Nisaury Tejeda, Tremendous Maid LLC, Jamaica Plain (2014 WINNER)
  • Yovanny Arias, Sharps Barber Shop, Hyde Park (2018)
  • Elias Audy, Cypress Automart, Brookline (2016)
  • Denise and Sambath Ban, Simply Khmer Restaurant, Lowell  (2014)
  • Victor Barros, Systemize Networks, Stoughton  (2014)
  • Arturo Barroso, Boston Shoe Service, Boston  (2014)
  • Edan Barshan, Universal Dental Plan, Boston  (2014)
  • Umesh Bhuju, Zumi’s Espresso and Ice Cream, Ipswich (2012, 2013, 2018 WINNER)
  • Veronice Biscalquim, Outstanding Cleaning, Inc., Somerville (2018)
  • Freddy Blanco, Don Quijote Market, Boston (2018)
  • Jitka Borowick, Cleangreen, Inc., Barnstable (2017, 2018)
  • Brad Brown, The Blue Frog Bakery, Jamaica Plain (2018)
  • Alberto Calvo, Stop & Compare Supermarkets, Chelsea (2014, 2015)
  • Angelica & Diana Cardona, Chocolafee, Revere (2016)
  • Martin Carrera, La Veracruzana, Amherst and Northampton (2015)
  • Eva and Nick Chau, Tai Tung Pharmacy, Boston (2016)
  • Henry Chung, Pho Saigon, Lee (2012)
  • Mario Cruz, Mario’s Subs and Salads, Roxbury (2017)
  • Tom Dang, Pho Da Lat Restaurant, Lowell (2013)
  • Javier Diaz, Rincon Caribeno Restaurant, Hyde Park (2014, 2015)
  • Larry Dossantos, 912 Auto, Dorchester (2012 WINNER)
  • Margarita Druker, Persona Jewelry in Boston (2018)
  • Mai Du, Wah Lum Kung Fu & Tai Chi Academy, Malden (2016)
  • Calvin Duong, New Century Auto Collision and Service Center, Lowell (2013)
  • Ahmed Egal, Car Service Boston, Boston (2015)
  • Yessy Feliz, Tails, Inc., Jamaica Plain (2017)
  • Tania and Antonio Forte, Red Fez Bar and Grill, Chicopee (2018)
  • Ruth Francis, P&R Ice Cream and Restaurant, Mattapan (2015)
  • Julia Frenkle, Opus Design LLC, Brighton (2016)
  • Fernanda Ghi and Guillermo Merlo, Artango Dance School, Brighton (2018)
  • Shelia Gibbs, Optical Expressions, Springfield (2018)
  • Jose Antonio Guerrero, Cafe Azteca, Lawrence (2014)
  • Suraj Gurung, Asian Star Markets LLC, West Springfield (2016)
  • Andres Gutierrez, JP’s Massage Therapy Center, Jamaica Plain (2015)
  • Dheyaa Habeed, Baghdad Bakery and Market, West Springfield (2016)
  • Eli Hsu, Tepthida Khmer, Lowell (2012)
  • Janet Hung and Delia Vildoso, Tiny World Child Care Inc., Brookline (2014)
  • Juan Ingles, Imigrante Latino America Services, Chelsea (2013)
  • Kham Inthirath, Envision Digital Group, Worcester (2017)
  • Muhmud Jafri, Dover Rug & Home, Natick (2013 WINNER)
  • Marie Claire Jean-Guillaume, La Ronde de Marie Claire Early Learning Center, Hyde Park (2013)
  • Fahri Karakaya, Pera Mediterranean Bistro, Williamstown (2018)
  • Sandra Katz-Deleon, Center For Bilingual Services, Lawrence
  • Inna Khitrik, Inna’s Kitchen, Boston (2018)
  • Rowaid Khudhur, STELA TECH, Worcester (2017)
  • Sun Kim, Sun Kim Bop, Springfield (2018)
  • Nai Nan Ko, Ko Automotive Group, Wellesley (2014)
  • Fatima Langa, Muqueca Restaurant, Cambridge (2016)
  • Hong Liu, A Friendly Inn at Harvard, Cambridge (2015)
  • Francisco Lora, Tropicana Market, Salem (2013)
  • Gerardo Loza and Hilda Torres, My Little Best Friends Early Learning Center, Malden (2016 WINNERS)
  • Josefina Luna, CEROcoop, Boston (2017 WINNER)
  • Roger Magalhaes, Shades in Place, Franklin (2012)
  • Valentin Maldonado, Continental Construction Group LLC, Lynn (2017)
  • George V. Markos, Brother’s Deli, Lynn (2015)
  • Danaris Mazara, Sweet Grace Heavenly Cakes, Lawrence (2016)
  • Ricardo Miranda, Miranda Auto Body, Springfield  (2014)
  • Moe Mobasherat, Omnidentix & Associates, Medford (2016)
  • Mike Mohamed, Il Forno Restaurant, Acton, Fitchburg and West Boylston (2017)
  • Ekaterina Morozova, Lash Boutique, Hyannis (2018)
  • Tarun & Simi Narula, Spice Root Indian Restaurant, Williamstown (2012)
  • Anthony O. N. Ngethe, Nursecare Transportation, Methuen (2015)
  • Ky Nguyen, Kingston Station, Boston (2015)
  • Phong Nguyen, Yoki Restaurant, Medford (2014)
  • Elizabeth Nolberto, Ellie’s CPR and First Aid Training, Lawrence (2016)
  • Jignesh Patel, Jay Square, Beverly (2016)
  • Colette Phillips, Colette Phillips Communications, Boston (2016)
  • Damaris Pimentel, ULTRA Beauty Salon, Jamaica Plain (2013, 2015 WINNER)
  • Roger Samkhon Pin and Soben Pin, KhmerPost USA, Lowell  (2014)
  • Antonio Rodrigues, TNT Cleaning Services Inc., Assonet (2016)
  • Elizabeth Rodriguez and Gladys Ruiz, Little Children Schoolhouse, Brookline (2015)
  • Maria Rosa, Yeska Cakes, Lawrence (2013)
  • Monica Ryan, Strawberry Child Care, Watertown (2017)
  • Nabil and Joseph Sater, The Middle East & ZuZu, Cambridge (2014)
  • Magbe Savane, Makomas LLC, Revere (2016)
  • Harley Silva, Cape Cod Marble & Granite, Inc., Hyannis (2017)
  • Manuel Silva, Silva’s Mini-Market, Lowell (2013)
  • Marc Silva, Somerville Sustainable Cleaning, Cambridge (2014)
  • Neily Soto, Soto Real Estate Services, Lawrence (2012)
  • Joe de Souza, Modelos Market and Cafe, Somerville (2016)
  • Rodrigo Souza, Comeketo Brazilian Steakhouse, Leominster (2018)
  • Helene and Thomas Stohr, swissbakers, Reading (2013)
  • Abrar Ali Syed, Pine Banks Animal Hospital, Malden (2012)
  • Sabrina Tan and Chin Lee, Flavours of Malaysia, Pittsfield (2014)
  • Malee Thai, Pailin Market, Lowell (2012)
  • Tran Family, My Xuyen Corporation (2012)
  • Douglas Tran, All Seasons Table, LLC, Malden (2013, 2016)
  • Long Tran, Viet Thai Restaurant, Lowell (2012)
  • Angel Valdivia, Angel’s Painting, Inc., Framingham (2013)
  • Carlos Vargas, Vargas & Vargas Insurance, Dorchester and Stoughton (2015)
  • Myra Vargas, J & P Cleaners, Jamaica Plain and Roslindale (2017)
  • Tania Vega and Jose Roberto Vega, River Grille, Hyde Park (2015)
  • Patria Veras Valenzuela, Sonia’s Bridal, Jamaica Plain (2013)
  • Yolanda Villamil, Alpha Travel Agency, Worcester (2015)
  • Weidong Wang, Baba Sushi and Chuan Sushi Restaurants, Worcester (2014)
  • Angela Westen, Angela Westen Insurance Agency, Lowell (2013, 2016)

Victoria Amador

Rosemary Agbede

Adolfo Alvarado

Edan Barshan

Jitka Borowick

Mai Du

Shelia Gibbs

Sandra Katz-Deleon

Josefina Luna

Jignesh Patel

Monica Ryan

Rodrigo Souza

Rosa and Nisaury Tejeda

Maria Alcantara

Victor Barros

Umesh Bhuju

Larry Dossantos

Yessy Feliz

Mahmud Jafri

Fatima Langa

Ricardo Miranda

Maria Rosa

Harley Silva

Malee Thai

  • Raj Aggarwal, Localytics, Boston (2017)
  • Vikram Aggarwal, EnergySage, Cambridge (2014)
  • Ahmed Albaiti, Medullan Inc., Cambridge (2017)
  • Edison Almeida, eCurv Inc., Cambridge (2016)
  • Rajini Anachi, mZeal Communications, Littleton (2016)
  • Ash Ashutosh, Actifio, Inc., Waltham (2013)
  • Mahmud Awan, Tech Man International LLC, Charlton City (2015)
  • Aki Balogh, MarketMuse, Inc., Boston (2018)
  • Panos Bethanis, survey.com, Boston (2018)
  • Himanshu Bhatnagar, HB Software Solutions, Lowell (2013)
  • Sridhar Bogelli, Apps Associates LLC, Acton (2018)
  • Vladimir Bulovic, QD Vision, Lexington (2016)
  • Dries Buytaert, Acquia, Burlington (2015 WINNER)
  • Kris Canekeratne, Virtusa Coroporation, Westborough (2012)
  • Sandro Catanzaro, DataXu, Boston (2017 WINNER)
  • Lior Div, Cybereason, Inc., Boston (2018)
  • Semyon Dukach, SMTP, Inc., Cambridge (2015)
  • Joshua Feast, Cogito Corporation, Boston (2015, 2017)
  • Max Faingezicht, ThriveHive, Boston (2018)
  • Alexander Falk, Altova, Inc., Beverly (2018)
  • Lingping Gao, NetBrain, Burlington (2017)
  • Ashifi Gogo, Sproxil, Inc., Cambridge (2013, 2014)
  • Bart Heilbron, BlueConic, Inc., Boston (2018)
  • Bettina Hein, Pixability, Boston (2014, 2018 WINNER)
  • Lissy Hu, CarePort Health, Boston (2017)
  • Qichao Hu, SolidEnergy Systems, Woburn (2018)
  • Fauzia Khan, and Mansoor Khan, Alere Analytics, Lowell (2014 WINNER)
  • Minh (Sam) Le, HeliDirect LLC, Malden (2017)
  • Natan Linder, Tulip Interfaces, Inc., Somerville (2018)
  • Jennifer Lum, Adelphic Mobile, Waltham (2017)
  • Mihael Mikek, Celtra, Inc., Boston (2016 WINNER)
  • Gaugarin Oliver, RedEgg Solutions, Waltham (2012)
  • Bhaskar Panigrahi, Unique Computing, Cambridge Technology, CellExchange, ConnectM Technology Solutions, Ecovent Systems and Cambridge Energy Resources (2017)
  • Christina Qi, Domeyard LP in Boston (2018)
  • Vasu Ram, Content Raven, Marlborough (2015)
  • Rama Ramakrishnan, CQuotient, Cambridge (2015)
  • Markus Rex, ownCloud, Lexington (2016)
  • Pedro Santos, OsComp Systems, Somerville (2014)
  • Anil Shah, MRCC Solutions, Billerica (2017)
  • Swapnil Shah, FirstFuel Software, Lexington (2014)
  • Omri Shor, Medisafe, Boston (2016)
  • Elad Shoushan, Ready4, Boston (2017)
  • Marin Solja?i?, WiTricity Corporation, Watertown (2013)
  • Nagarjuna Venna, BitSight Technologies, Cambridge (2017)
  • Dinesh Wadhwani, ThinkLite LLC, Natick (2015)
  • Anita Worden, Solectria – A Yaskawa Company, Lawrence (2015)
  • Xavier Xicay, Tuatara Corp., Boston (2014)

Aki Balogh

Dries Buytaert

Max Faingezicht

Lingping Gao

Marcus Rex

Elad Shoushan

Himanshu Bhatnagar

Sandro Catanzaro

Joshua Feast

Bettina Hein

Swapnil Shah

Dinesh Wadhwani

  • Sudhir Agrawal, Idera Pharmaceuticals, Cambridge (2016)
  • PJ Anand, Alcyone Lifesciences, Lowell (2016)
  • Garo Armen, Agenus, Inc., Lexington(2016 WINNER)
  • Bela Asztalos, PhD, Boston Heart Diagnostics Corporation, Framingham (2014, 2015)
  • Pravin Chaturvedi, PhD, IndUS Pharmaceuticals, Woburn (2014)
  • Laxman Desai, Toxikon Corporation, Bedford (2015 WINNER)
  • Johannes Fruehauf, BioLabs and LabCentral, Cambridge (2017 WINNER)
  • Guangping Gao, Voyager Therapeutics, Inc., Cambridge (2018)
  • Michael Koeris, Sample 6 Technologies, Woburn (2017, 2018 WINNER)
  • Magdalena Leszczyniecka, STC Biologics, Cambridge (2016)
  • Chiang J. Li, Boston Biomedical, Inc., Cambridge (2013 WINNER)
  • Vincent Linder, Claros Diagnostics, Woburn (2012)
  • Alexey Margolin, Allena Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Newton (2017)
  • Davide Marini, Firefly BioWorks, Inc., Cambridge (2014)
  • Salvatore Mascia, CONTINUUS Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Woburn (2017)
  • Krishna Menon, Innovation Pharmaceuticals Inc., Beverly (2015)
  • Bernat Olle, Vedanta Biosciences, Inc., Cambridge (2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Ajikumar Parayil, Manus Bio, Cambridge (2017)
  • Elisabet de los Pinos, Aura Biosciences, Cambridge (2016)
  • Shahin Pourrahimi, Superconducting Systems, Billerica (2017)
  • Josef von Rickenbach, PAREXEL International Corp., Waltham (2014 WINNER)
  • Derrick J. Rossi, Moderna Therapeutics, Cambridge (2015)
  • Amarpreet Singh Sawhney, Ocular Therapeutix, Inc., Bedford (2012 WINNER)
  • Jonathan Thon, Platelet BioGenesis, Cambridge (2018)
  • Oliver Yu, Conagen, Bedford (2016)
  • Andrey Zarur, Greenlight Biosciences, Medford (2014)
  • Vincent W. Coljee, Excelimmune, Inc., Woburn (2012)
  • Yang Zhao, Memsic, Inc., Andover (2012, 2013)

Sudhir Agrawal

Laxman Desai

Michael Koeris

Krishna Menon

Pravin Chaturvedi

Johannes Fruehauf

Vincent Linder

Josef von Rickenbach