This past Monday night, November 4, 2013, Thomas C. Kinnear, received the Lifetime Achievement Award for remarkable achievements in helping to build a strong, diverse and entrepreneurial Michigan business ecosystem, from the Michigan Venture Capital Association.
Tom Kinnear has been a key part of the fabric of Michigan’s entrepreneurial ecosystem for more than 20 years. In conjunction with his long-standing work with the Zell Lurie Institute, he is the chairman of the state’s Venture Michigan Fund, which oversees two funds totaling $215 million that invest in venture capital funds making deals in the state. His commitment to Michigan start-ups and those that fund start-up organizations is unparalleled, including experience on both sides of the entrepreneurial coin-helping to start companies, and providing funding to others.
During his time at the Zell Lurie Institute, Kinnear built an incredibly successful program that, since its inception, has served more than 5,000 students. This work included creating the $5.5 million Wolverine Venture Fund, one of the first student-led venture funds in the nation; Dare to Dream grants, which help move students through the business-creation process; and efforts to provide students with more than $3 million to pursue entrepreneurial endeavors. As a result, Zell Lurie has been ranked among the nation’s top five graduate programs for entrepreneurs by The Princeton Review and Entrepreneur every year since 2010, and this year was named the No. 1 Graduate program in entrepreneurship education.
In addition to his remarkable work with the University of Michigan, Kinnear is well known in Michigan’s entrepreneurial community as a trusted advisor, investor, and mentor. He has served on the boards of several start-up companies including Newtwork Express, BlueGill Technologies, Accio Energy, Accuri Instrument, Avail Networks, Avidmer Therapeutics, Mobius Microsystems, Janeeva, nanoCerox, and NanoBio. In addition to being an active angel investor, he is also a limited partner in several venture funds including Apjohn Ventures, Arbor Partners, Arboretum Ventures, EDF Ventures, and RPM Ventures. Kinnear is a member of the investment committee for EDF Ventures and Arboretum Ventures. He also serves as Chairman of the Venture Michigan Fund, and on the board of the Michigan Venture Capital Association.
Tom Kinnear currently holds the title of Eugene Applebaum Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies, Executive Director of the Samuel Zell and Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies, and Professor of Marketing at the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.
To learn more about Tom Kinnear you can visit his faculty profile here.
To see the originally blog posting on the Ross School of Business website click here.