The founders of industry giants Quintiles and Red Hat are among the inaugural inductees in the Council for Entrepreneurial Development’s new hall of fame.
In addition to Quintiles founder Dennis Gillings and Red Hat co-founder Bob Young, two others were voted into the inaugural class of the N.C. Entrepreneur Hall of Fame: Dennis Dougherty, the founder and managing partner of Durham venture capital firm Intersouth Partners; and Fred Hutchison, the founder of Raleigh law firm Hutchison PLLC and the founding president of CED.
An eight-person selection committee considered more that three dozen candidates for the inaugural class. To be inducted, a candidate had to receive more than 80 percent of the committee votes.
“The selection committee adopted a guideline of ‘would the entrepreneurial community be dramatically different if this candidate had not founded a business here, made investments here, or provided services or support here?” Joan Siefert Rose, CEO of CED, said in a statement. “In looking at the contributions of each of our inductees the answer, unequivocally, is ‘yes.’”
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[News & Observer business reporter David Ranii served on the selection committee.]
The first hall of fame class was announced Thursday and will be inducted Tuesday at The Frontier in Research Triangle Park. Here’s more on the inductees:
▪ Dennis Dougherty: Dougherty is the founder and managing general partner of Intersouth Partners, which became the largest venture capital fund in the state and one of the largest in the Southeast. Intersouth has invested in more than 100 companies and has more than $780 million under management.
Dougherty also was a co-founder of CED and has served on dozens of boards of directors of both privately held and publicly traded companies. He also was on the board of directors of the National Venture Capital Association.
▪ Dennis Gillings: Gillings, a former biostatistics professor at UNC-Chapel Hill, was among the pioneers in the CRO, or contract research organization, industry when he founded Quintiles in 1992. He was CEO of the Durham company for its first 30 years, building it into the world’s largest CRO. Today Quintiles has more than 36,000 employees, including 2,500 in the Triangle.
Quintiles’ presence here was one of the catalysts that helped make the Triangle the epicenter of the CRO industry.
▪ Fred Hutchison: Hutchison was the first president of CED, which today is the nation’s largest support group for entrepreneurs. CED was formed in 1984.
In addition, Hutchison has worked with more than 500 startups as an attorney at three Raleigh law firms, including Hutchison PLLC, which he founded 20 years ago. Hutchison also is a former chairman of NC IDEA, the First Flight Venture Center and the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce.
▪ Bob Young: Serial entrepreneur Bob Young is the co-founder of open source software giant Red Hat, which today is headquartered in downtown Raleigh and boasts more than 9,000 employees worldwide. He also led the company as CEO from 1993 to 2000.
After leaving Red Hat, Young founded self-publishing company Lulu.com. He was also the first investor in Raleigh drone company PrecisionHawk and is currently its CEO.