Cal Poly Alumni Named Roblans of the Year in Paso Robles

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John and Marjorie Hamon accept the 2014 Roblan of the Year award.

John and Marjorie Hamon, both Cal Poly alumni, were recently honored as the 2014 Roblans of the Year at the 94th Annual Paso Robles Chamber of Commerce Gala.

The pair met while attending Cal Poly. John studied industrial arts (now called industrial technology) while Marjorie majored in industrial engineering. After graduating, the two purchased Marjorie’s family business, now run as Hamon Overhead Garage Doors.

Marjorie Hamon has lived in Paso Robles for more than 50 years. She has served as governor of the Paso Robles Paderewski Festival, volunteered with local Boy Scouts, coached AYSO youth soccer, and has been a longtime supporter of the Paso Robles Pioneer Day parade and bean feed.

John is currently serving his third term as a Paso Robles City Councilman. He has volunteered his time for the Boy Scouts, the Paso Robles Rotary Club and the Volunteer Fire Department. He sits on the Paso Robles Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and the Industrial Technology Advisory Board for Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business. As a local pilot, John also serves on the city’s Airport Advisory Board.

At the gala, the Hamons were presented with special honors from the California State Legislature and the Paso Robles City Council. Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian, also a Cal Poly alumnus, was on hand to recognize the Hamons.

The Roblan of the Year award is presented annually to members of the Paso Robles Chamber of Commerce who have made a significant contribution through community service, action and donations over the years.

Orfalea College of Business Alumni Honored by Forbes Magazine

Forbes’ 30 Under 30 lists featured two Orfalea College of Business alumni among its 2015 honorees.

Jessica Becker, cofounder of InPress Technologies, was named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list for healthcare. InPress Technologies is developing a medical device to stop postpartum hemorrhaging. Today, bleeding after giving birth remains the most common cause of death for new mothers around the world. The venture has already raised $1.5 million, including support from inventor and venture capitalist Thomas Fogarty. InPress Technologies grew with help of Cal Poly’s Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship, including its HotHouse Accelerator program. Becker graduated from the Orfalea College of Business in 2011 with a degree in business administration and a concentration in entrepreneurship and small business. For more information on the startup, visit

Jesse Dundon, CEO of Hathway, was named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 for advertising and marketing. Hathway is a San Luis Obispo, Calif.-based digital creative agency that develops apps and online campaigns for the likes of Behr Paint and Transamerica. Dundon cofounded the firm in 2009 and has since led its team toward strong growth, including establishing offices in Tokyo. He graduated the Orfalea College of Business with a bachelor’s degree in industrial technology in 2007. In 2008, Dundon earned his master’s degree from Cal Poly in the same subject. He currently serves on the college’s Industrial Technology Advisory Board. For more information on Hathway, visit

For more information on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 lists, visit

Business Alumni Honored by San Luis Obispo Tribune

Two Orfalea College of Business alumni were honored among the San Luis Obispo Tribune’s Top 20 Under 40. Chris Richardson, managing partner of Richardson Properties, and Jeff Bower, vice president of consulting for TekTegrity, were recently named to the cohort of leaders honored for 2014.

Many other Cal Poly alumni joined the list of honorees. Read the full article on the Tribune’s website.

Business Alumnus Selected to Speak at Fall Commencement Ceremony

Orfalea College of Business alumnus Quentin Lilly will speak at one of Cal Poly’s fall commencement ceremonies on Dec. 13. Lilly, a Central Coast native, graduated from the Orfalea College of Business in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration, concentrating in finance.

Lilly currently serves as president of Technicolor Home Entertainment Services, the world’s largest manufacturer and distributor of DVD, Blu-ray and related home entertainment products. Since 1999, he has been responsible for the strategic development and growth of Technicolor’s worldwide operations including manufacturing, distribution, and supply chain operations. Most notably, Lilly has positioned the company for success across 12 countries by maintaining strong relationships with Hollywood studios, app software and games publishers. Today, he continues to lend his expertise to the Executive Committee of Technicolor, Inc., the Paris-based, publicly-traded parent company.

Throughout the 1990s, Lilly served as Technicolor’s senior vice president of planning and development and chief operating officer. Before joining the company, Lilly leveraged his Cal Poly finance degree to build a decade-long career in investment banking and capital markets at Smith Barney and Crowell, Weedon & Co.

As a member of the Orfalea College of Business’ Dean’s Advisory Council since 2005, he has helped shape the direction of the college in step with an ever-evolving business landscape. In addition to establishing a scholarship for outstanding business students, Lilly is especially passionate about forging connections between Cal Poly graduates, their fellow alumni and industry-leading employers.

Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business Names Local Business Leader as Honored Alumnus

Honored Alumnus Michael Bickel in the Orfalea College of Business' Metals Lab at Cal Poly.

Honored Alumnus Michael Bickel in the Orfalea College of Business’ Metals Lab at Cal Poly.

Michael C. Bickel, president and CEO of RPS Holdings, was named the 2014-15 Honored Alumnus of Cal Poly’s Orfalea College of Business. He is a 1995 graduate of the college’s Industrial Technology area, which combines a business education with technical courses covering the operations side of manufacturing. He went on to complete his master’s degree in the same discipline at Cal Poly in 2002.

Bickel has been an involved member of the college’s Industrial Technology Advisory Board since 2005. In that role, he has contributed to the overall strategic plan of the area. Bickel has also guest lectured in a product development course, orchestrated industrial technology projects and mentored student teams. In 2008, Bickel created the Bickel Family Scholarship Endowment to support incoming industrial technology freshmen.

“Mike is a great friend of the college and a prime example of how the comprehensive polytechnic model works here,” says Orfalea College of Business Dean Scott Dawson. “The Industrial Technology area has built such a great reputation, and we know that’s in part to leaders like Mike who help guide it forward.”

Bickel’s company, RPS Holdings, owns Rantec Power Systems, an engineering and upper-tier designer and manufacturer of power supplies for the military and aerospace markets based in Los Osos, Calif. He started his career at Rantec in 1982 as a quality assurance inspector. After he rose to the position of general manager, Bickel purchased the company to oversee its expansion and success. He continues to serve as Rantec’s president. Today, Rantec employs many Cal Poly alumni from the College of Engineering; roughly 60 percent of its professional hires are Cal Poly graduates.

Bickel lives locally with his wife, Lori (Graphic Communications ‘86). His daughter, Alexandra (Recreation, Parks & Tourism Administration ‘12), is also a Cal Poly alumna, and son Aaron is an alumnus of the University of Oregon (Economics ’14).

The title of Honored Alumni is the highest honor bestowed on an alumnus by the Cal Poly Alumni Association. Cal Poly named its first Honored Alumnus in 1953. In the 1970s, the university began recognizing former students from each of its academic colleges. Bickel joins this year’s cohort of Honored Alumni from Cal Poly’s other colleges, as well as awards for leadership and distinguished services.

For more information, visit Cal Poly’s Homecoming website.