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Lessons from Outstanding Business Leaders

Every year for the last 35 years, Northwood University has honored leaders whom we consider to be exceptional examples of personal and professional success. These impressive individuals are part of our Outstanding Business Leader (OBL) Awards program, and this weekend we will induct six men and women into the Class of 2015. The inductees’ stories of personal triumph and achievement are powerful. This year we honor a native of India who landed in the U.S. with $50 and now owns a successful IT company. We welcome a recovered quadriplegic and business leader; an international sports marketing guru; and one of America’s top women financial advisors. We also induct our own Florida basketball coach who motivates students and players in class and on the court; and an entrepreneur who turned around his newly acquired company in 30 days.

This is just a glimpse into the lives of Sonu Ratra, John Rotche, Steve Madincea, Melissa Spickler, Rollie Massimino and Jim Hallett. They join more than 300 previous OBL honorees who challenge us, encourage us, and motivate us.

And as importantly, they teach us. These Outstanding Business Leaders freely share of their knowledge and expertise with our students during events like the Student Forum and other networking opportunities. In addition to these personal interactions, they teach by example the power of integrity, the reward of hard work, the benefit of embracing a risk-taking mindset, and the importance of making a difference in the world around us. These real life learning opportunities are invaluable for our students.

Congratulations to the 2015 Outstanding Business Leader inductees. We thank you for the standard you set for our students and the generosity you display in business and life.

Have a great weekend.


Keith A. Pretty, J.D. President and CEO Northwood University 4000 Whiting Drive Midland, MI 48640 989.837.4203

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