Successful Entrepeneur to Speak at Millennial Event

July 17th, 2012

For Immediate Release:
July 16, 2012

Successful Entrepeneur to Speak at Millennial Event
Gary Hoover Sparks Change in Northeast Indiana Millennials at "M2020 Spark Tank"

FORT WAYNE, Ind. - As an Indiana native and entrepreneurial guru, Gary Hoover has done what many Millennials have only thought of doing. He had an idea, sparked change, and made it happen. Now hes back in Indiana to inspire Northeast Indiana Millennials (approx. age 15-25) as the keynote speaker for the free upcoming event M2020 Spark Tank on July 27 at the University of Saint Francis Performing Arts Center in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Gary Hoover, at the young age of 30, created pioneering book superstore BOOKSTOP, which helped change the nature of book shopping in America. The company was sold to Barnes & Noble for $41.5 million cash when it was seven years old, and became a cornerstone for their industry-dominating superstore chain. After selling the company, he began the company that became Hoover's, the world's largest Internet-based provider of information about enterprises. covers over 40,000 companies around the world. Like BOOKSTOP, Hoover's has changed the way we do things and today employs over 300 people.

"Gary Hoover's example of changing the way we do things is exactly the type of inspiration we're looking for in Northeast Indiana," said Lindsey Hively, a Millennial Leader's Alliance member and owner of Kernel Coladas Gourmet Popcorn in Columbia City. "This event is a chance for Millennials to make their mark on the region. I think Gary will be inspiring, and I am excited to see what type of ideas he sparks in event attendees as the day progresses."

At M2020 Spark Tank, Millennials will be given the opportunity to pitch ideas from community projects to business plans for sparking change in Northeast Indiana to their peers and regional leaders for a chance to win $500 in seed funding. Don't have an idea just yet? No problem. Come listen to the great ideas being presented, offer feedback, network with regional leaders and collaborate to create the change you want to see happen in your hometown.

When: Friday, July 27, 8:30am-6pm
Where: University of Saint Francis Performing Arts Center (formerly the Scottish Rite Center), 431 West Berry Street, Fort Wayne, IN 46802
Who: Millennials (approx. ages 15-25) and Regional Leaders
Admission: Free!
Registration: Register online at
Questions: Contact Tori Rowe at or 260-469-3465

Register your idea by July 20th at for a chance to win a $50 gift card!

And as an added incentive-prize packages will be given away throughout the day!

• Win a set of Colts preseason tickets!
• Be one of the first 100 attendees through the door and win tickets to the TinCaps game that night!
• Like the Millennial 2020 Facebook page for a chance to win a prize at the event!

M2020 Spark Tank is an event through the Millennial 2020 program. Millennial 2020 is an extension of Vision 2020 , a regional initiative stewarded by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership, working to transform Northeast Indiana through the five pillars of 21st Century Talent, Competitive Business Climate, Entrepreneurship, Infrastructure, and Quality of Life. Millennial 2020 is giving Millennials an active voice and role in Vision 2020 and directly aligning with Vision 2020's mission for Northeast Indiana of developing, attracting, and retaining talent. M2020 Spark Tank is being sponsored in part by the University of Saint Francis.

The Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership was formed in 2006 to help build a globally competitive economy in Northeast Indiana. It is a public-private partnership focused on generating business leads and building regional capacity through product development and effective regional collaboration. In 2010, the Partnership launched Vision 2020 to bring the region together around five key areas (the five pillars) for economic growth: 21st Century Talent, Competitive Business Climate, Entrepreneurship, Infrastructure and Quality of Life. Through its combined efforts in business development and capacity building, the Partnership supports its 10 member counties: Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley.


Courtney Tritch
Marketing Director
Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership

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