School of Business and Economics Dean, Dr. William Silver, announced a gift of $180,000 to establish the Hugh Codding Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Sonoma State University in front of a packed room at the annual Economic Outlook Conference today.
The funding for the Hugh Codding Entrepreneur-in-Residence will support a business entrepreneur to help build an "entrepreneurship pipeline" from local schools into Sonoma State, and then from the University into the North Bay Innovation Hub and the regional economy.
The Hugh Codding Entrepreneur-in-Residence will also act as a champion for entrepreneurship and its importance in a healthy North Bay economy.
"Hugh Codding, one of Sonoma County's most successful businessmen, embodied the spirit of entrepreneurship," noted Silver. "He recognized opportunity, created successes, and through it all, he gave back to his community."
"We look forward to working with innovation partners and successful companies like Trivascular, the Buck Institute, and regional R&D firms, and will foster innovation in niches unique to the North Bay like our organic foods cluster, wine, solar and water, and medical technology," Dean Silver explained.
"Our support for entrepreneurship at Sonoma State is a logical match. At Codding, we're interested in building sustainable communities and we need young entrepreneurs with the skill and drive to launch the businesses that will make these communities thrive," noted Brad Baker, President of Codding Enterprises.
Codding built his first house on speculation and later parlayed his $400 Navy discharge pay into development projects, eventually building one of the state's first under-one-roof shopping centers and creating Montgomery Village and Coddingtown.
He also took his innovative approach to other ventures including savings and loans, title companies, and a weekly newspaper.
Connie Codding, president of the Codding Foundation added, "Hugh had a vision; he built a successful company, and also our community. We're pleased to create the Hugh Codding Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Sonoma State to grow the next generation of entrepreneurs who can have a positive impact in the region and beyond."
For more information, please contact Annemarie Brown, 707-664-2221, firstname.lastname@example.org.