Ideas@Work Information:

The NIIC Ideas@Work Entrepreneurial Movement

The NIIC Ideas@Work Entrepreneurial Movement Fuels Innovation & Entrepreneurship

The NIIC’s annual Ideas@Work Signature Event Series convenes up to 500 entrepreneurs, business leaders, and students to fuel the innovative and entrepreneurial spirit in Northeast Indiana and the greater region. The Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation serves as the event venue. This event series has featured dynamic, distinguished leaders in innovation and entrepreneurship.


October 28, 2020, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

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The NIIC Ideas@Work Event is held at the Parkview Mirro Center for Research and Innovation.

Check-in and networking begin at 11 a.m. with lunch and program beginning at 11:30. The event ends at 1 p.m.

Interested in sponsoring entrepreneurs to attend or generally sponsoring the event? Opportunities are available. Contact Tammy Sipe at

Click here to register.




Ikigai—reach beyond New Year’s resolutions and goals.

In this season of New Year’s resolutions and goal setting (integral to success), what would happen if we strive for something greater? A driving force for all we do in our lives? Enter, ikigai—a Japanese term meaning “a reason for being.” What would happen if we all lived from that place? My place, my ikigai? […]

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What it Takes to Be an Entrepreneur, 5 Tips to Stay Grounded

Successful entrepreneurs share certain qualities and behaviors. Embracing those may help you stay grounded and propel your success. The NIIC had the privilege to host Fort Wayne, Indiana native Angie Hicks, founder of the home services website Angie’s List, as a keynote speaker for our NIIC Ideas@Work Event. Her story is inspiring and encouraging. Her connection with […]

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5 Guiding Points for Success in Life

We all need guiding points for navigating life, from business interactions to family, home and friends. Chuck Surack, Sweetwater Sound, Sweet Cars and Sweet Aviation Founder (among various other entrepreneurial ventures) shared in The NIIC Ideas@Work Keynote five rules he lives by in our community and through his global companies. Here they are, summarized and expanded. 1) It’s all […]

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Your BIG IDEA , Three Tips from the Man Behind The Million Dollar Arm

Wouldn’t it be great if million-dollar ideas grew on trees? They take hard work, ingenuity, and often lead you outside your comfort zone. For sports agent and entrepreneur J.B. Bernstein, his breakthrough came from looking through a new lens at something as traditional as baseball. Drawing on his unique cross-cultural experience, Bernstein created The Million Dollar Arm contest […]

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5 Myths and Realities of An Entrepreneurial Mindset

There’s a reason a small percentage of the general population pursues entrepreneurial ventures. Myths and misconceptions abound, which dissuades many. Following are five myths and realities inspired by Dr. Donald F. Kuratko (Dr. K.), a national leader of entrepreneurship. Seriously, check out his biography. I had the pleasure of hearing him keynote The NIIC Ideas@Work Event a couple […]

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Interested in sponsoring our Ideas@Work event?

Check out our Sponsor Brochure for more information:
2020 Ideas@Work Sponsor Brochure


Ready to sponsor Ideas@Work?

Complete our sponsorship form and mail it to
2020 Ideas@Work Sponsorship Form

Key Takeaway Cards:

2019 Ideas@Work Key Takeaways Card

Keynote Speaker, Santiago Jaramillo
CEO and Co-Founder of Emplify

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2018 Ideas@Work Key Takeaways Card

Keynote Speaker, Angie Hicks
Co-Founder of Angie's List, Chief Customer Officer of Angi Homeservices

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2017 Ideas@Work Key Takeaways Card

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Donald F. Kuratoko (Dr. K)

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2016 Ideas@Work Key Takeaways Card

Keynote Speaker: Chuck Surack
CEO and Founder of Sweetwater

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2015 Ideas@Work Key Takeaways Card

Keynote Speaker: J. B. Bernstein
Legendary Sports Marketing Pioneer

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2014 Ideas@Work Key Takeaway Card

Keynote Speaker: Eric Doden
President of Indiana Economic Development Corporation

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Mirro Founder Award:

The Ideas@Work Signature Event Series serves as a platform to celebrate and recognize business builders. Established in 2015, the award was named after Dr. Mike Mirro, a prominent physician, entrepreneur, visionary, researcher and community leader. Dr. Mirro was the founding board chair of The NIIC. Originally, the award was presented to clients of The NIIC student business builder program. This has changed to also include clients of our WEOC Program.



Read the press release



Read the press release



Read the press release


2016 Ideas@Work Mirro Student Founder Award RecipientD-N-S DESIGN, FOUNDERS MATT VANLANDINGHAM AND LINDAL WALKER

Read the press release


2015 Ideas@Work Mirro Student Founder Award RecipientASHELY COLEMAN, LA’SHIC, CREATOR OF ORTHOPEDIC HIGH HEELS


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