Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Barry M. Portnoy Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Benefit?

The Barry M. Portnoy Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Benefit is a reception, dinner and awards ceremony to honor outstanding immigrant entrepreneurs in Massachusetts. The evening is presented by The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc. The awards honor outstanding Massachusetts immigrant entrepreneurs in four categories: business growth, neighborhood business, high-tech business and life science business.

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When and where will the benefit be held?

The reception begins at 6:00 PM on Tuesday, October 29, 2019.
The event takes place at the Royal Sonesta Boston, 40 Edwin Land Boulevard, Cambridge, MA 02142.

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Who can attend the Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards Dinner?

Everyone is welcome to attend this special opportunity to honor Massachusetts’ outstanding immigrant entrepreneurs.

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How much are tickets?

Individual General Admission tickets are $300 ($150 is tax deductible). Tickets for 2019 nominees and nominators are $150. Online ticketing and sponsorship information is available here. Contact Mark Correia at MCorreia@ilctr.org with questions.

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What sponsorship opportunities are still available?

The sponsorship levels are as follows:

  • Spotlight, $50,000. Includes full-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and in the awards slide show, and two tables of eight (16 tickets) to enjoy the reception and dinner ($47,600 is tax-deductible).
  • Visionary, $35,000. Includes full-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and in the awards slide show, and one table of eight to enjoy the reception and dinner ($33,800 is tax-deductible).
  • Empowering, $25,000. Includes full-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and in the awards slide show, and one table of eight to enjoy the reception and dinner ($23,800 is tax-deductible).
  • Innovative, $15,000. Includes half-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and four tickets to enjoy the reception and dinner ($14,400 is tax-deductible).
  • Presenting, $10,000. Includes half-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and four tickets to enjoy the reception and dinner ($9,400 is tax-deductible).
  • Pioneering, $5,000. Includes half-page ad in the program book, recognition on The ILC website and two tickets to enjoy the reception and dinner ($4,700 is tax-deductible).
  • Table Sponsor, $2,000. Includes one table of eight ($800 is tax-deductible).
  • Program book ad, $500 for full-page, $250 for half-page and $100 for quarter-page.
  • Friend of The ILC, any amount. Includes a mention in the program book (100% is tax-deductible).

Online ticketing and sponsorship information is available here. Contact Mark Correia at MCorreia@ilctr.org with questions.

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What are the ad specifications?

PDF or JPEG ad
5″ wide x 8″ tall for full page
5″ wide x 3.875″ tall for half page
2.375” wide x 3.875” tall for quarter page

300 DPI

Deadline for submitting artwork is October 9, 2019.

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Who is eligible to be nominated?

For all award categories, nominees must be a foreign-born founder of a business (for-profit corporation, partnership or proprietorship, not franchise or subsidiary) headquartered in Massachusetts and founded in 2015 or earlier.

For neighborhood business nominees:

  • Be actively involved in a senior management position or as a board member of said business.
  • Nominee has distinguished themselves through the impact they and their business have on the neighborhood. This can include civic leadership, job creation, employee relations, social responsibility and more.

For business growth nominees:

  • Be actively involved in a senior management position or as a board member of said business.
  • Business must be profitable and have achieved a minimum of $2 million in gross revenue in calendar year 2018.
  • Business must employ at least 10 full-time-equivalent employees in Massachusetts and show strong employment growth.

For life science or high-tech nominees:

  • Business must be in a life science or high-tech industry.
  • Business must have achieved a minimum of $2 million in gross revenue in calendar year 2018 or have received a minimum of $2 million in outside investment in the past five years.
  • Business must employ at least 10 full-time-equivalent employees in Massachusetts.
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What is the nomination process?

Nominations will be accepted through September 2, 2019. Online nomination forms are available as follows:

For questions about nominating or to receive a Microsoft Word version of the nomination form, please contact Karen Glover at kglover@ilctr.org.

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Can I self-nominate?

Absolutely! Self-nominations are encouraged.

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Do all owners of a nominated business have to be immigrants?

No. Not all founders need to be immigrants for one or more of them to be nominated.

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Is there a hashtag?

Yes! It’s #ILCTRawards and don’t forget to tag us @ilctr.

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How else can I help spread the word?

Our social media kit is full of content for sharing on social media. For other outreach ideas, please contact Karen Glover, director of communications, at kglover@ilctr.org.

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Who were previous award winners?

Business Growth:
Julia Silverio, Silverio Insurance Agency, 2012
Rafael Guzman, RM Technologies, 2013
Fitzroy Alexander, Traditional Breads, Inc., 2014
Helene and Thomas Stohr, swissbakers, 2015
Herby Duverné, Taino Consulting Group, 2016
Jose de la Rosa, Guardian Healthcare, 2017
Fausto Garcia, Five Star Plating, 2018

Neighborhood Business:
Larry Dossantos, 912 Auto, 2012
Mahmud Jafri, Dover Rug & Home, 2013
Rosa and Nisaury Tejeda and Victoria Amador, Tremendous Maid LLC, 2014
Damaris Pimentel, Ultra Beauty Salon, 2015
Gerardo Loza and Hilda Torres, My Little Best Friends Early Learning Center, 2016
Josefina Luna, CEROCoop, 2017
Umesh Bhuju, Zumi’s Espresso, 2018

High-Tech / Life Science:
Dr. Amar Sawhney, Ocular Therapeutix, Inc., 2012
Dr. Chiang Li, Boston Biomedical, 2013
Dr. Fauzia Khan and Mansoor Khan, Alere Analytics, 2014 High-Tech
Josef von Rickenbach, PAREXEL International Corp., 2014 Life Science
Dries Buytaert, Acquia, 2015 High-Tech
Laxman Desai, Toxikon Corporation, 2015 Life Science
Mihael Mikek, Celtra, Inc., 2016 High-Tech
Garo H. Armen, Agenus, Inc., 2016 Life Science
Sandro Catanzaro, DataXu, 2017 High-Tech
Johannes Fruehauf, BioLabs, 2017 Life Science
Bettina Hein, Pixability, 2018 High-Tech
Michael Koeris, Sample6, 2018 Life Science

To see a complete list of previous nominees, click here.

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Who is Barry M. Portnoy?

Barry M. Portnoy was the founder of The RMR Group, an alternative asset management company, and a founding board member of The Immigrant Learning Center. As a consummate entrepreneur, he built businesses in multiple industries, employed thousands and contributed mightily to local economies. His steadfast support of The ILC gave thousands of immigrants a voice. Because of his unwavering belief in immigrants and the transformational impact of entrepreneurship, The ILC Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards were renamed after his death in 2018.

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What are full-time-equivalent employees?

One full-time-equivalent (or FTE) employee is equivalent to one employee working full-time. If you have part-time employees, they each represent a fraction of an FTE. For example, if you have five full-time employees who each work 40 hours a week and five part-time employees who each work 20 hours a week, you would have 7.5 FTEs.

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What is gross revenue?

Gross revenue equals all of the revenue received during a given time frame, before any deductions for taxes, operating costs, etc.

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Will my financial information be confidential?

Financial information will not be shared outside of the selection committee if the nominee requests confidentiality.

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How are the awards judged?

Four selection committees of experts have been convened, one for each award category. The committee reviews each nomination and selects as the winner the nominee who is making the biggest impact .

The business growth award selection committee members are:

  • Herby Duverne, Windwalker Group
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • Jose Luis Rojas Villarreal, Local Enterprise Assistance Fund (LEAF)
  • Debi Kleiman, Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship, Babson College

The neighborhood business award selection committee members are:

  • Betsy Cowan, Metropolitan Area Planning Council
  • Leandro Freire, Accion
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • Theresa Park, City of Lawrence
  • Herby Duverné, Windwalker Group

The high-tech business award selection committee members are:

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

The life science business award selection committee members are:

  • Lauren Celano, Propel Careers
  • Michelle Linn, Bioscribe
  • Denzil Mohammed, Public Education Institute at The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.
  • Tracy Nicholson, Third Rock Ventures
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More questions? Contact info@ilctr.org.

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