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1/27/17 Venture College

photo of Ed ZimmerBuilding things no one wants – how do you know your idea solves a problem worth solving?

Ed Zimmer, Associate Director
Boise State University Venture College
January 27, 2017  – Noon – 1:00
ENGR 110

About the Presentation

Venture College helps Boise State students develop the skills needed to answer this question. In 2016 businesses started by entrepreneurs who participated in Venture College had $1.8 million in sales.  Kevin Learned, Director of Venture College and several of the Venture College entrepreneurs will introduce you to the concepts successful entrepreneurs use to bring new products to the market.

About the Speaker

Ed Zimmer retired as CEO of ECCO Group in October of 2009. Ed joined ECCO in 1985, and in 1993 was named President and Chief Operating Officer. In 1998 he became Chief Executive Officer. Since ’85, Boise based ECCO has grown from 20 employees into the world’s largest manufacturer of warning lights and reversing alarms for commercial vehicles, with manufacturing plants in Boise,  England and Australia with over 500 employees. ECCO’s growth story is featured in the book Small Giants by Bo Burlingham, as well as several other business books and articles. Ed led ECCO through 9 corporate acquisitions between 1992 and 2008.

Prior to joining ECCO, Ed was the Olympic Coordinator for the USA Gymnastics team, and Head Gymnastics coach at University of Washington and Boise State University. Before starting his coaching career, he was in sales, marketing and new product development management for Porter Equipment Company in Chicago. Ed graduated from University of Illinois – Chicago in 1973. He graduated from Miami-Dade Junior College in 1971 (Miami, Fla), and Hinsdale Central High School (Hinsdale, Ill.)

He is actively involved in the Boise community as Executive in Residence for the Department of Research at Boise State University, and recently as Chairman of Boise Mayor David Bieter’s Business Roundtable, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Foothills School. He chaired the Idaho Anne Frank Memorial Capital Campaign in Boise, and is a past member of the Board of Directors of the BSU Foundation,the Boise Area Chamber of Commerce, the Idaho Human Rights Education Center, Ballet Idaho, as well as a number of corporate and non-profit boards. Ed is currently serving as Interim Head of School for Foothills School of Arts and Sciences in downtown Boise, Chairman of the Board of Black-Rac Manufacturing Company, and Managing Partner of Glacier L&B, LLP.  Ed and his wife Amy have two children and reside in Boise.

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