The 2014 NJIE Awards was held on December 9, 2014 at Fairleigh Dickinson University and honored these ten first-generation immigrant business leaders for their success in helping their local New Jersey communities thrive. The Awards were created to highlight the contributions of New Jersey’s immigrant entrepreneurs.

The 2014 Award Recipients:

NJ Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year: Mario Casabona, Italy,

Founder and CEO, TechLaunch, Clifton, NJ

According to Mario, “At the time it was founded in 2012 Tech Launch was the only investor-led Accelerator in the State . TechLaunch satisfies multiple goals at once: it helps aspiring entrepreneurs launch their dreams into reality; it exists as an exciting start-up on its own business model; it celebrates and stimulates the tech talent in our own eco-system in NJ; and it’s an organic delivery channel for the wealth of experience and wisdom that Mentors bring to the table each and every day. Mario proudly shared with the audience that, “In two years TechLaunch has launched 26 Companies, mentored 65 Entrepreneurs and 55 Interns, created a network of over 130 Mentors, and collaborated with over 20 affiliates and Meetup organizations.”

Albert Einstein Award for Innovation: Rajendra Sadhu, India

Founder and CEO, VESAG Health, Inc., North Brunswick, NJ

George Perrott Macculloch Award for Leadership: Marcela Zuchovicki, Argentina/Mexico

President and CEO of Jalima and Associates, Phillipsburg, NJ

Nicholas Marcalus Award for Sustainability: Grigore Burdea, Romania

President and Founder, Bright Cloud International Corp., Highland Park, NJ

Caspar Wistar Award for Growth: Rita Gurevich, Russia

Founder and President, SPHERE Technology, Hoboken, NJ

David Sarnoff Award for Advocacy and Community Engagement: Alfa Demmellash, Ethiopia

CEO, Rising Tide Capital, Inc., Jersey City, NJ

Honorable mentions were awarded to Lilie Donahue, President, Esmer, PS, Saurabh Abrol and Arun Abrol, Founder, President and CEO of the Wine Chateau, Shoufeng Li, CEO, Aucta Pharmaceuticals – A Novo Laboratories Company and Pierre Hage- Boutros, Owner of Pierre’s of South Brunswick.

Einstein’s Alley, one of the founding partners in the 2nd Annual NJ Immigrant Entrepreneur Awards (NJIEA) congratulates all the winners but especially the winner of the 2014 Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, Mario Casabona, CEO and Founder of TechLaunch, a NJ Technology Accelerator and a Member of the Einstein’s Alley Advisory Council.