A Small Business Showcase

The Turner Center's 2020 Small Business Awards honored 10 recipients for excellence in small business success.

Turner Center for Entrepreneurship small business winners
Text by Jonathan Wright ~ Photography by Evan Temchin

The Robert and Carolyn Turner Center for Entrepreneurship at Bradley University is a rich and multifaceted resource for Greater Peoria’s business community. The various centers which comprise the Turner Center provide business counseling, technical assistance, training and educational activities for startups and existing businesses that want to expand or leverage new opportunities, market their products and services internationally, or commercialize new products and technologies. More recently, it has taken the lead on COVID-19 business relief.

On September 1, 2020, the Turner Center hosted an award ceremony to celebrate the success of its clients and the strong relationships of its community partners. In a year like no other, this recognition honors the positive community impact of local entrepreneurs, innovators, small businesses and the people who support them—highlighting promise during a time of great adversity. Peoria Magazine is proud to partner with the Turner Center for Entrepreneurship to bring their stories to the wider community.

Startup of the Year: The Box Truck Network
An online matchmaking service connecting freight carriers with loads to haul

New Exporter of the Year: Pop-A-Shot
Skyrocketing sales and a proactive approach to growth

Exporter of the Year: 4B Components Ltd
A focused international strategy and ongoing investments in innovation

Government Contractor of the Year: EngineeringPeople
Combining engineering and software expertise for training and education

Community Partner of the Year: IMEC
A one-stop shop to meet the needs of Illinois manufacturers

Small Business Advocate of the Year: Jake Hamann, Peoria Innovation Alliance
Fostering collaboration, changing the narrative, building an ecosystem

Small Business of the Year: Virtusense Technologies
Groundbreaking AI solutions that impact lives across the country

Innovation of the Year: Natural Fiber Welding
Peerless, plastic-free performance from nature’s abundance

Women In Business Leadership Award: Doris Symonds, T.A.L.K.
Cultivating women entrepreneurs and building meaningful relationships

COVID Courageous Award: PAL Health Technologies / Reditus Laboratories 
Industry-leading companies pivot on a dime

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