Alumni Entrepreneurs Among ‘Best of Tech in Indiana’ Nominees

Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Nick Birch

Nick Birch, a 2014 mechanical engineering alumnus who has co-founded two Indianapolis based startups, has been nominated as a rising entrepreneur in TechPoint’s Mira Awards program.

Alumni whose entrepreneurial spirit founded innovative high-tech ventures have been nominated for TechPoint’s Mira Awards, honoring “The Best of Tech in Indiana.”

Nominees in 12 categories were selected by a group of independent subject matter experts on the basis of their contributions in their segment of Indiana’s tech ecosystem. These finalists include four companies co-founded by Rose-Hulman alumni.

Software Engineering Professionals (SEP) is a finalist in the Exceptional Employer Award category for hiring and developing tech talent, cultivating workspaces and workplace culture and deliberately increasing diversity. The Carmel, Ind.-based company was founded in 1988 by four alumni and it has become a leader in custom software development. Clients are in aerospace, manufacturing, health care and financial services.

SEP co-founder Jeff Gilbert, a 1985 mechanical engineering alumnus, is the company’s chief executive officer. Other alumni in prominent roles are Raman Ohri, a 1993 computer engineering alumnus, as the company’s president and Paul Pringle, a 1986 computer science graduate, as director of security and operations. Ohri will take over as CEO when Gilbert retires on March 31.

Scale-up of the Year nominee Scale Computing was started in 2007 by 1996 computer science alumni Jeff Ready and Scott Loughmiller. The Indianapolis company has become a market leader in edge computing and hyperconverged solutions, and had record-breaking sales in 2018, major funding support and new partnerships from throughout the world.

Recent startup Woven, a finalist as New Tech Startup of the Year, was co-founded by Wes Winham, a 2007 software engineering graduate, and Anthony Panozzo, a 2006 computer science alumnus. The Indianapolis software company helps high-growth engineering teams hit ambitious hiring goals.

Jon Speer, a 1998 chemical engineering alumnus, started Greenlight Guru in 2013 to develop software solutions that are specifically designed for medical device professionals to get new medical products to market, which staying in compliance. The company is a finalist in the New Tech Product of the Year category.

Meanwhile, a Rising Entrepreneur Award finalist is Nick Birch for being among a class of young, passionate and creative leaders who are thriving in Indiana’s growing tech community. The 2014 mechanical engineering graduate is chief executive officer of PropelUp, a learning platform for software developers that he co-founded in 2015. He also helped start the Eleven Fifty Coding Academy and has been an Entrepreneur-In-Residence at Rose-Hulman.

Mira Award category winners will be announced April 13 at a special 20th anniversary celebration in downtown Indianapolis. TechPoint is a non-profit, industry-led growth initiative for Indiana’s technology companies and overall tech community.