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Amanda J. Billings
Executive Director of Marketing and Communications
Phone: (812) 330-6222
Fax: (812) 330-6205

Inaugural Cook Institute at Ivy Tech to feature honorable John M. Mutz

September 16, 2010

Bloomington, Ind. The Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship at Ivy Tech Bloomington will host its Inaugural Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship on October 20, 2010 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Ivy Tech Student Commons. The Cook Institute will engage Ivy Tech students, individuals and the community to focus on entrepreneurship education, support and awareness.  Former Lt. Gov. and entrepreneur John M. Mutz will serve as the keynote speaker and Gayle & Bill Cook will participate in the event.

 “Bill and Gayle bring an unbelievable creativity and common sense to any project they undertake,” Former Lt. Gov. John M. Mutz said. “What’s more, the two of them are among the best listeners I have ever met — and that’s where true entrepreneurism begins.”

John M. Mutz is an entrepreneur, corporate leader, public servant and philanthropist.  He serves on multiple corporate and not-for-profit boards of directors including the Lumina Foundation where he serves as past Chairman. He will speak about the growing need for entrepreneurship and innovation in Indiana and the world. 

"The message that Mr. Mutz will bring to our inaugural event will strike the exact tone we seek in our message of providing practical entrepreneurial tools to individuals, our business program students and our extended economic development community,” Chancellor of Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus John Whikehart said. “His success in the world of business, his contribution as a public servant, and his personal friendship with Gayle and Bill Cook make him the perfect keynote speaker to launch the Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship.”

The Cook Institute will also feature a panel discussion with local and regional entrepreneurs providing insight into the rewards and challenges of starting and operating small businesses in today’s economy.  Additionally, an update on the progress of the Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship at Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus will be presented to the community.

 “Bill Cook has long been an example of how American entrepreneurs can impact lives and communities by creating jobs and economic growth,” Steve Ferguson, Chairman of the Board of Cook Group said. “I am delighted that John Mutz, who has more than four decades of experience as an entrepreneur, food service executive and in public service at the Indiana Statehouse, will bring his valuable insights on economics, philanthropy and politics to the Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship.”

 “In today’s economy, job growth and vitality are essential for workers and companies alike,” Kem Hawkins, President of Cook Inc. said. “The Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship offers practical tools and strategies for budding entrepreneurs on how to achieve those goals John Mutz understands that when partnerships exist between education and business, communities prosper.” 

The Gayle & Bill Cook Center for Entrepreneurship was created in 2010 to develop and provide practical tools for students, individuals and the community to foster entrepreneurship at Ivy Tech-Bloomington and in the region it serves. 

Ivy Tech Community College is the state's largest public postsecondary institution and the nation's largest singly accredited statewide community college system serving nearly 200,000 students annually.  Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana. It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.