The Center for Entrepreneurship honored two local entrepreneurs during the capstone luncheon of the fourth annual Entrepreneurship Week. The Emerging Entrepreneur Award is given to an entrepreneur who has been in business for less than five years. The award recognizes their risk taking, economic impact, and community involvement. The 2019 Emerging Entrepreneur Award recipient was Alyson Fisher, who owns three local businesses: Fantastic Fido’s, a pet resort facility; Garden Gate Flowers & Gifts; and AT Productions, where she works with businesses in a concierge and consultant capacity to help them succeed. She bought her first business in 2017.

The Entrepreneur of the Year Award is given to an entrepreneur who has been in business for more than five years, honors an entrepreneur for their professional achievements, mentoring of other entrepreneurs and contributions to the community. The 2019 Entrepreneur of the Year was Mike Dragoo, who founded Dragoo Metal Works with his wife, Lori, in 1991. Today, the company operates out of a 30,000 sq. ft. building with 20 employees. Mike also owns Ultra Clean, and was one of two who helped save the Hoof & Horn Steak House, a Southside staple since 1896.

Dragoo is currently serving as president of the Southside Sertoma Club and volunteers for several other local organizations. He serves on the Sheet Metal Workers Local #2 Apprentice Board, and was Chair of the Board for four years for Hillcrest Transitional Housing (now Pivotal Point).