Lifetime Achievement Award: Curt Richardson, founder & chairman, Otter Products LLC
In the news: Richardson created business that runs without him
From our archives: Richardson out of garage for good
Richardson’s company, Otter Products, is one of the leading employers in Fort Collins and a company that has been listed seven times among the Inc. 5000 fastest-growing companies. The company has also been listed in Fortune, Forbes and Entrepreneur Magazine as a Great Place to Work.
His career began with a plastic tooling company and later Richardson Tool and Mold, Richardson Finch Manufacturing and Richardson International. OtterBox grew out of the creation in his garage of a waterproof case in the early 1990s, followed by creation of the company in 1998. OtterBox now is the top seller of protective cases for smartphones, and the company has developed other protective cases and rugged outdoor equipment such as coolers. He co-founded Blue Ocean Enterprises Inc. and Blue Ocean Holdings LLC, where he helps businesses develop and grow.
Bravo! Entrepreneur: Dr. Don Wells, Associates in Family Medicine
Wells founded Associates in Family Medicine PC in 1962 and grew the practice, based in Fort Collins, to one of the largest independently owned medical practices in the state. Associates has more than 50 medical providers and nine full-service offices in Northern Colorado, including multiple locations in Fort Collins and Windsor. It also has a major presence at Colorado State University.
Bravo! Entrepreneur: Jon Turner, Highland Meadows/Heron Lakes
Turner is a land developer in Northern Colorado. He and a partner, Chris Frye, founded Hillside Commercial Group Inc. in 1993 and under that umbrella developed several master-planned real estate projects. The latest may be the most visible — Heron Lakes at TPC Colorado, the new professional-scale golf course at Berthoud. He was also the developer of Highland Meadows Golf Course, Timnath Ranch, Country Farms and Country Meadows.
Bravo! Entrepreneur: Brian Peterson, ECI Site Construction
Peterson is founder and chairman of the board of ECI Site Construction Management Inc. based in Loveland. He founded the company in 1980 with a pickup truck and a wheelbarrow. Initially, the company was a landscape company that later grew into a contractor specializing in complex outdoor environments that may include downtown redevelopment, park and sports venues and natural area restoration. He now focuses on the marketing and development of the company.
Bravo! Entrepreneur: Leo Hayden, Hayden Outdoors
John Leo Hayden is a real estate broker specializing in outdoor and ag-related properties. Hayden has been a broker for 40 years and sells properties in 12 states, including Colorado, where the company is now located, and Kansas, where the business started. Hayden’s two sons, Dax and Seth, join him in his business, Hayden Outdoors. Hayden is a licensed appraiser. His background is in farming, ranching and livestock management. He enjoys hunting, fishing and golf. The company is based in Windsor.