Entrepreneurship Professor Wins Provost’s Award for Philanthropy

Jon York and President Jeffrey ArmstrongEntrepreneurship Professor Jonathan York was honored at Cal Poly’s annual Fall Conference event with the Provost’s Leadership Award for Partnership in Philanthropy. The award is given to current and former faculty members who demonstrate superior achievement in fundraising to advance the mission of the university. Provost Kathleen Enz Finken recognized York for his work building support for Cal Poly’s Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (CIE).

York and Dr. Lou Tornatzky founded the CIE in 2010. Since then, York, who also serves as the center’s faculty director, has been instrumental in building a strong community of support for the CIE’s student-centered programs. The CIE has grown to support student pitch competitions, an annual Hackathon, an on-campus Hatchery, the SLO HotHouse Accelerator and Incubator programs, and study away opportunities with Draper University in the Silicon Valley. He has also engaged a vast network of entrepreneurs who regularly visit Cal Poly and the HotHouse and mentor student startups as they work through the CIE’s programs.

York has been teaching in Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business since 2007. Previously, he led a 30-year career as a CEO, entrepreneur and venture capitalist.

York is one of 10 Cal Poly faculty members and three university staffers were honored for exemplary service at the 2015 Fall Conference held Sept. 14 on campus.

“We have many reasons to celebrate our faculty and staff for their dedication and their hard work,” said Enz Finken, who is also Cal Poly’s executive vice president for academic affairs. “Our annual faculty and staff awards are one way for us to acknowledge all of this fantastic activity that is going on around our campus. These are colleagues who engage, inspire and go beyond the call of duty.”

Other Cal Poly Award award-winners include:

Distinguished Scholarship Award
Wyatt Brown, Professor, Horticulture & Crop Science Department

Philip Costanzo, Associate Professor, Chemistry & Biochemistry Department

Lars Tomanek, Associate Professor, Biological Sciences Department

Distinguished Teaching Award
Todd Grundmeier, Professor, Mathematics Department

Sandy Stannard, Professor, Architecture Department

Dustin Stegner, Associate Professor, English Department

Outstanding Staff Award
Don Popham, Project and Event Manager, Facilities Services

Donetta Rosson, Administrative Support Coordinator, Agricultural Education & Communications Department

Maria Arvizu-Rodriguez, Academic Advisor, Student Academic Services

Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award
Kristen Cardinal, Associate Professor, Biomedical & General Engineering Department

Learn by Doing Faculty Scholar Award (planned and in-progress research)
Steffen Peuker, Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering Department

Learn by Doing Faculty Scholar Award (published research)
J. Kevin Taylor, Chair & Professor, Kinesiology Department