Paul J. Hooker Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership Hall of Fame
Bowling Green State University presents the 2018 inductees to the Paul J. Hooker Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership Hall of Fame. They will be inducted on Wednesday, April 18.
Gary Cotshott '73, '74
Managing Director, GAMA Capital, Ltd.
Gary Cotshott earned both a BSBA in Statistics and an MBA in Finance from BGSU. His career successes have spanned business development, transformation and global leadership roles.
Currently he is the Managing Director of GAMA Capital, Ltd., a private equity holding company for his entrepreneurial interests which include Redbird Flight Simulations, Royal Aircraft Services, Tanager Financial Services and the newly formed Austin Craft Spirits Company. His previous corporate intra-preneuring roles and senior leadership included NCR Corporation, Dell, Inc. and TechTeam Global, Inc. During his 9 year tenure leading Dell Services globally, the business unit grew from $250 million to $5.5 billion in revenue. Since its first shipment in late 2008, Redbird has become the world’s largest full-motion fight simulation company for general aviation.
Cotshott is well known for his extensive global knowledge, line P&L general management experience across sales, marketing, finance and services operations and his mergers & acquisitions expertise.
Mitch McLeod '85
Chairman and Founder, Arcos LLC
Mitch Mcleod earned a bachelor's degree in mathematics from BGSU, followed by a master's degree in computer science from The Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering.
Currently McLeod is chairman and founder of Arcos LLC, a software company he founded in 2005. Based in Columbus, Ohio, Arcos provides the technology that finds, assembles and tracks repair crews to improve service restoration and emergency response for electric utilities, gas utilities and power generation plants.
McLeod began his post-college career with the U.S. Department of Defense as a cryptanalytic mathematician. While with the department, he was awarded four Special Performance Awards for exemplary service on mission critical projects. Later, he joined AT&T Bell Laboratories in Columbus, Ohio, and was the team leader on the Conversant IVR Certification Team.
Decai Sun, Ph.D. '90
Chairman and CEO, Lightera Corporation
Decai Sun earned a master's degree in physics from BGSU, followed by a Ph.D. in engineering physics from University of Virginia. Dr. Sun holds more than 50 patents in semiconductor lasers, micro-electro-mechanical systems and light-emitting diodes, and he has published more than 25 journal papers.
Dr. Sun is chairman and CEO of Luminus Devices, Inc., which is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California and develops and manufactures LED solutions for the global illumination market. Prior to starting Lightera which merged with Luminus, he held research and development management positions at Philips Lumileds where he was instrumental in introducing high-efficiency thin film flip-chip gallium nitride LED products to the market.
Earlier career highlights include working as senior research and development at the startup Bandwidth9 to develop high-power LEDs for illumination, along with working on semiconductor lasers and MEMs development as a member of Xerox PARC's technical staff.
George M. Weiss '63
Attorney, Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist
Founder, Beechtree Capital
George M. Weiss earned a bachelor's degree from BGSU, followed by a Master of Arts degree and a Juris Doctorate degree with honors from New York University. He is the recipient of many awards, principal among which is the National Football Foundation’s highest honor, its Gold Medal.
Weiss is the founder and CEO of Beechtree Capital, LLC, a private investment firm operating in New York and Scottsdale. With 40+ years of senior management and investing experience, he has been a company founder, officer and board member as well as a senior advisor to CEOs and top-level executives in high-growth industries around the world.
Currently he is the executive chairman of three Arizona-based companies: Engenavis, Inc., a developer of clean energy solutions primarily for the transportation industry; Innovative Climactic Technology Corporation, a developer of innovative HVAC and evaporative cooling technologies; and W2E, providing emission-free waste-to-energy solutions.
The Paul J. Hooker Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership Hall of Fame recognizes BGSU graduates, honorary degree holders and members of the regional community who have achieved distinction for founding, leading or building a new business enterprise for five years or more. These individuals have demonstrated an entrepreneurial spirit that has helped shape our economies and improved our quality of life.
The Paul J. Hooker Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership Hall of Fame celebrates the success stories of our alumni and friends who inspire future generations of entrepreneurs and innovators. It is one of 20 centers worldwide recognized by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).