On Wednesday, November 20th, Einstein’s Alley along with eleven other business groups, associations, local and bi-national chambers of commerce in NJ hosted the 1st Annual NJ Immigrant Entrepreneur Award Program at the Rothman Institute of Entrepreneurship-Silberman College of Business-Fairleigh Dickinson University.

KK cropped small at podium_thumbThe NJIEAwards honored ten first-generation immigrant business leaders helping local New Jersey communities thrive.

The awardees received awards named after historical immigrant entrepreneurs in New Jersey such as Nicholas MarcalusGeorge MerckIda Rosenthal.

Jon Lau, whose company Applied Info designs software technology for the US Army Training and Doctrine Command, received the Albert Einstein Award for Innovation sponsored by Einstein’s Alley. After explaining how he came on a boat to the US as a child, and went on to become an industry leader in multimedia communication and technology innovation. Lau stated “This is my payback to the United States, because I truly believe this is the land of opportunity.”

 

Larry Evans & Ryan Lilienthal & Nick Montalto Dr. and Mrs. Rozanski & Stacy Mattia

The winner of the 2013 Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year Awards was Jay Kulkarni, founder of Theorem. Kulkarni sent a video message; and his son Brian accepted the award on his behalf. “The paradox of the American dream is that it is highly sought after by non- Americans.” said Kulkarni. “It’s larger than an idea, more lasting than a mere dream; it is an ideal that fervently sought after outside of America.” “Unlike one who’s born an American, immigrants become an American by choice and that’s a powerful statement.”Mordechai Rozanski, President of Rider University and recipient of the Special Award for Immigrant Accomplishment, agreed with that sentiment, “Unlike those who were born here, we came here by choice.  We worked harder, we achieved a little more, not only for our families, but to be worthy of the privileges- chief among them citizenship.”

The 2013 Awardees:

  • 2013 NJ Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year: Jay Kulkarni, India, CEO & Founder of Theorem, Chatham NJ
  • George Perrott Macculloch Award for Leadership: Louis Rodriguez, Colombia, SA, Owner of Independent Power Systems Consulting, Marlboro NJ
  • Ida Rosenthal Young Entrepreneur Award: Adenah Bayoh, Liberia, Owner of Irvington International House of Pancakes, Irvington NJ
  • Evelio Cuellar Award for Family Business: Geetha Jayaraman, Malaysia, Owner of Grab em Snacks and Spoon & Sprout Café, Ringoes NJ
  • Albert Einstein Award for Innovation: John T Lau, China, President of Appliedinfo Partners, Somerset, NJ
  • Caspar Wistar Award for Growth: Shau-wai Lam, China, Chairman and CEO of DCH Auto Group, South Amboy, NJ
  • David Sarnoff Award for Advocacy: Samia Bahsoun, Senegal, of President and CEO of S2 Associates International based, Holmdel NJ
  • George Merck Award for Community Engagement: Rita Gurevich, Russia, President and Founder  of SPHERE Technology Solutions based, Hoboken NJ
  • Nicholas Marcalus Award for Sustainability: Mitrajit Mukherjee, India, President and Founder of Exelus, Fairfield, NJ
  • Special Award for Immigrant Accomplishment: Mordechai Rozanski, Poland, President of Rider University