Dobson co-created Parkside Pediatrics in 2006, and grew it from four employees to 150 today. Dobson and his two cofounders opened an independent practice right out of residency to create a more personalized customer service approach to healthcare. The business has experienced 20% growth each year since it’s founding, and had 58% growth in 2015, largely due to the Breastfeeding Center.
Dobson received a BS in mechanical engineering from Clemson, an MS in biomedical engineering from Vanderbilt, and his MD from the Medical University of South Carolina. He is an international Board Certified Lactation Consultant.
ZACH EIKENBERRY | Founding CEO of NEXT High School
Zach Eikenberry has served in a variety of capacities as a serial entrepreneur over his eight years since graduating from Purdue University with degrees in Philosophy and Economics. He has been a high school teacher, conference speaker, community college instructor, mentor, business executive, and church community group leader since relocating to Greenville in 2009.
With the opening last year of Next High School in its brick and mortar location on Wade Hampton Blvd, his vision is now reality and continuing to grow school students to begin their life, business, and impact today, instead of when they graduate college. Previous to accepting the role as the Founding CEO of NEXT High School, Zach served as the Board Chairman for NEXT High School.
TODD HORNE | VP of Business Development, Clayton Construction
Horne refocused Clayton Construction on new target markets, identified high-profile prospects within those respective markets and implemented a customer-focused sales strategy that resulted in a $13 million sales increase from 2014 to 2015. Clayton Construction ranked 7th on the list of SC Best Places to Work in 2015.
Horne earned a communications degree from USC Upstate in 2005 and worked as an account manager at Greenville Office Supply before joining Clayton Construction in 2008. He has earned numerous awards and honors, including the Spartanburg Chamber’s Volunteer of the Year in 2009 and Young Professional of the Year in 2013. In addition to his role at Clayton Construction, Horne is chairman of the Spartanburg Chamber of Commerce. He has also served on the boards of Hub-Bub, Ten at the Top, Spartanburg West Rotary and Spartanburg Young Professionals.
SHAY HOUSER | Founder & Chief Executive Officer, Green Cloud Technologies
Shay is a veteran of the telecommunications industry, with experience as an entrepreneur, investor, and senior officer of various organizations. After receiving a B.A. from The Citadel and serving in various sales support, product management, and corporate development roles with nationwide long distance resellers, Houser co-founded Seruus Ventures, LLC, TriVergent, founded and sold UCI Communications, LLC, and founded Green Cloud Technologies.
As CEO of Green Cloud Technologies, Shay has overseen company growth exceeding that of Green Cloud’s direct competitors nationwide: Revenue growth of 85% year over year (from 2014 to 2015); Projected 75% year over year revenue growth in 2016; Three-year revenue growth rate (2012-2015) of 4040%.
KRISH PATEL | President/CEO, Wireless Communications
Krish was exposed to an entrepreneurial spirit at a young age. A class assignment to develop a business plan led to the opening of his first Verizon Wireless Premium retail store in 2008, five months after college graduation. By 2015 he had grown his retail presence to nearly 50 Verizon Wireless stores in South Carolina, Georgia and Texas.
Patel was recently invited to join the board of the Urban League of The Upstate to aid in their efforts to support and mentor young people and empower them to take action after graduating high school.
ALLEN SMITH | President, Spartanburg Chamber of Commerce
Allen was named President/CEO of the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce in June of 2014. Since taking the helm in Spartanburg most of his work has been internal, with the fruits of those labors still to be seen. Still, 2014 was a big year for Spartanburg: The Economic Futures Group (a division of the Spartanburg Area Chamber) was responsible for $2.3 billion in investment and the creation of 2,100 jobs.
Prior to that he served as President/CEO of the Greater Greer Chamber of Commerce for four years, preceded by five years with the Greenville-Pitt County Chamber of Commerce in North Carolina. He graduated from East Carolina University in 2003, earning a BS, Political Science and Government.