Inside INdiana Business

TechPoint Unveils 2020 Mira Award Nominees

INDIANAPOLIS (Inside INdiana Business) — The state’s technology initiative has unveiled the nominees for the “Best in Tech” in 2020. TechPoint Chief Executive Officer Mike Langellier says this year’s Mira Awards will not only spotlight the top tech companies in Indiana, but also continue to “be the place, as always, where relationships are forged, deals are made and where we celebrate the next generation of great companies and people.” Nearly 130 nominees from throughout the state are up for awards in 12 categories, including Tech Product of the Year and Innovation of the Year.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Reporter Mary-Rachel Redman, Langellier said the theme for this year’s Mira Awards is “Be Bold.”

“We’re really challenging the companies in the room and leaders in the room to think of not only the impact that their companies can make in the market, but also the impact that Indianapolis can make as well and Indiana as a state can make on the tech landscape across the country,” said Langellier. “What we know is that the Mira Awards is a really powerful, important platform for validating companies and helping to promote their successes and for people. People’s careers have taken vastly different trajectories of growth as a result of being a nominee or a winner. Companies have received interest and ultimately investment from venture capital firms as a result of being validated through the (Mira) process.”

The companies nominated for the awards range from small startups with less than $100,000 in revenue to large enterprises with up to $2 billion in revenue. TechPoint says the companies employ more than 10,000 Hoosiers.

Langellier adds this year’s Mira Awards ceremony will incorporate TechPoint’s “Wish You Were Here” campaign, which launched last year. The initiative aims to attract tech talent, including former Hoosiers, from throughout the country to come to Indiana.

“We’re having a red carpet experience as part of the Mira Awards, where we’re going to have a class of individuals that are interested in coming to Indiana to work here and we’re introducing them to companies that are prospective employers for them and we’re going to showcase the community for them at the Mira Awards.”

Langellier says the “Wish You Were Here Campaign” has already seen success since beginning in October. He says six of the nearly 30 applicants who were brought to Indy last fall have accepted jobs and are in the midst of moving to Indianapolis. He adds another five are in the late-stage hiring process.

“These are people that are 2-20 years of experience living in other parts of the country that, for many of them, they’re entering into a different stage in life. They’ve seen the exciting things that are happening here, but they’ve also entered into a stage where they want to be closer to family. They want to be able to buy a house. They want to be able to save money for the future and they want to be able to do it here, and so we’re giving them an opportunity to do that.”

This year’s nominees include:

Tech Product of the Year – (Highly innovative and ground-breaking tech products that burst onto the scene or achieved a major milestone last year)

  • 120WaterAudit 
  • Anvl
  • Cimcor, Inc.
  • Cummins Inc.
  • Delta Faucet Company
  • DemandJump
  • FlexePark
  • hc1
  • Karyosoft
  • KMC Controls
  • NCAA
  • Raytheon Company (prime) Secure Communications (partner)
  • Schneider Geospatial
  • Zylo

Service Partner of the Year – (The year’s best service provider delivering remarkable, impactful service to clientswhether they be external or internal)

  • Avance Design
  • BLASTmedia
  • Brite Systems Enlite with Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS)
  • Counterpart
  • Cummins Inc.
  • Innovatemap
  • KSM Consulting
  • Lev
  • Mobile reCell
  • NCAA IT Department
  • Pin & Tumbler Studio at Allegion
  • Project Brilliant
  • Raytheon Company

Innovation of the Year – (A brand new way of doing things that revolutionizes, advances, or creates new tech industries and fields)

  • Anvl’s Automated Offline Hazard Identification
  • DemandJump
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • HySonic Technologies
  • Illuminate Health – Recovery Coach
  • Karyosoft
  • LaLaLi Vocal Perfomance Analyzer
  • Olio
  • Passageways
  • Preventia Group
  • Prime Movement Healthcare
  • WPR Services POW Brands

Rising Entrepreneur Award – (A class of passionate and creative entrepreneurial leaders thriving in Indiana)

  • Amy Brown, Founder & CEO, AuthentiCx, Inc
  • Ben Forrest, Founder and CEO, Olio
  • Megan Glover, Co-Founder/CEO, 120WaterAudit
  • Luke Jacobs, Co-founder & CEO, Encamp
  • Megan Lohman, CEO, Plan Forward
  • Brodie Meyer, CEO, FuseMe
  • Aaron Pierce, CEO, Pierce Aerospace
  • Evan Rocheford, Co-Founder and CEO, NutraMaize
  • Darren Root, CEO, Rootworks LLC
  • Sarah Stilz, Founder, Prime Movement Healthcare
  • Sunny Lu Williams, President, TechServ Corporation

Tech Education Award – (Celebrating educators and education innovators who inspire and have a positive impact on student achievement)

  • Center for Information and Communication Sciences (CICS), Ball State University
  • Codelicious
  • Eleven Fifty Academy
  • Matthew Etchison, CIO, Ivy Tech Community College
  • Steve Fouty, McDermond Center Director, DePauw University
  • Dr. Mary Giesting, Director of The Imagination Lab, Plainfield Community School Corporation
  • Girl Scouts of Central Indiana
  • Indiana University Idea Garden @IUPUI
  • Infosys Foundation USA
  • Marianne McKenzie, Code Cafe, Indianapolis Public Library
  • Nextech
  • Purdue Polytechnic High School

Investor of the Year – (The venture firms or angel investors who bring money plus outstanding connections, advice and attention to Indiana companies)

  • Edison Partners
  • Elevate Ventures
  • Victor Gutwein, Managing Partner, M25
  • HG Ventures
  • Innovatemap Ventures
  • IU Ventures
  • Ade Olonoh, Venture Partner, Starting Line

Community Impact Award – (Individuals and organizations that have gone above and beyond to support the advancement of Indiana’s tech community)

  • Eleven Fifty Academy
  • Indiana Department of Correction
  • Indy Hackers
  • Kalvin Jones, President and Founder, Code Black Indy
  • Kelli N. Jones and Jeff TD Williams, Co-Founders, Be Nimble Ventures & Black Hatch Fund
  • Chelsea Linder, gBETA Managing Director, gener8tor
  • Jason Pennington, Executive Director, Indiana IoT Lab
  • The Polis Center at IUPUI
  • Rural Innovation Network
  • The Speak Easy
  • Women & Hi Tech
  • Luke Zhang, Data Scientist, DemandJump

Rising Tech City Award – (Cities, towns, regions or communities in Indiana, celebrating the projects and people behind them who have championed the location’s advancement with particular emphasis on tech friendliness)

  • #FortBenTech Campus
  • City of Bloomington
  • City of Evansville
  • City of Indianapolis
  • City of South Bend

Exceptional Employer Award – (Companies doing an exceptional job of hiring and developing talent, cultivating workspaces and workplace culture and deliberately increasing diversity)

  • BLASTmedia
  • Delta Faucet Company
  • KAR Global
  • Kronos Incorporated
  • KSM Consulting
  • Lev
  • LifeOmic
  • Passageways
  • Republic Airways and LIFT Academy
  • SEP

Startup of the Year – (Startups with great potential that demonstrate the creative, strategic and innovative entrepreneurial spirit of Indiana’s technology industry)

  • Anvl
  • AuthentiCx
  • Cabentry
  • Casted
  • Civic Champs
  • Docket
  • Encamp
  • InternX
  • Olio
  • Plan Forward
  • The New Paper
  • Woven

Scale-up of the Year – (High-growth, innovation-driven companies that provide technology products or services, are gaining traction and could be Indiana’s next big success stories)

  • ActiveCampaign
  • Boardable
  • Greenlight Guru
  • Kerauno
  • KSM Consulting
  • Lev
  • OneCause
  • Passageways
  • Socio
  • Vibenomics
  • Zylo

Large Enterprise of the Year – (Companies with exceptional innovation and market position that are helping Indiana to become a recognized technology leader, putting Indiana on the map in the technology world)

  • Allegion PLC (c/o Schlage Lock Co LLC)
  • Delta Faucet Company
  • Kronos Incorporated
  • Republic Airways
  • Sallie Mae
  • Schneider Geospatial
  • STANLEY Security

TechPoint will also announce the recipient of this year’s TechPoint Trailblazer Award. The winners will be announced at the 21st annual Mira Awards gala, which will take place April 18 in downtown Indianapolis. 


Boyfriend of British TV presenter heartbroken by her death

LONDON (AP) — The boyfriend of Caroline Flack, the former British TV host for the controversial reality show “Love Island,” said Sunday that his “heart is broken” at her death as criticism mounted over her treatment by some British media.

British commercial television network ITV said it would not air Sunday’s edition of the show but that it would return on Monday with a tribute to its former host.

Flack, 40, was found dead Saturday at her home in east London after taking her own life, according to a family lawyer. Flack hosted “Love Island” from its launch in 2015 before stepping down in December after being charged with assaulting her 27-year-old boyfriend, Lewis Burton.

Flack denied the charge and was to stand trial next month. She was also not allowed to have any contact with Burton, a bail restriction he objected to. Burton also did not want Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service to go ahead with the trial.

Over the past few months, Flack had been the focus of several negative articles and was trolled across social media for the assault charge. On Sunday, the story of her suicide dominated the front pages of British newspapers.

Beside a picture of them together, Burton said on Instagram that he was in “so much pain.”

He added: “I promise I will ask all the questions you wanted and I will get all the answers nothing will bring you back but I will try make you proud everyday.”

The sixth season of “Love Island” is currently airing and ITV said in a statement that it will not broadcast Sunday’s edition of the show. On Saturday, the commercial network did not air a package of unseen footage from the previous week.

“After careful consultation between Caroline’s representatives and the ‘Love Island’ production team, and given how close we still are to the news of Caroline’s tragic death, we have decided not to broadcast tonight’s ‘Love Island’ out of respect for Caroline’s family,” ITV said in a statement.

ITV said the show will return on Monday and that it will include “a tribute to Caroline who will be forever in our hearts.”

“Love Island” puts young, attractive contestants in a tropical paradise, where they must pair up or risk being exiled. Critics claim the program places vulnerable young people under intense scrutiny and pressure, which is magnified by blanket coverage of the show by tabloids and TV talk shows. Two former “Love Island” contestants, Sophie Gradon and Mike Thalassitis, died by suicide in 2018 and 2019.

Until her arrest, Flack had enjoyed a meteoric career rise after co-hosting Saturday morning children’s television shows. She also hosted companion shows to the popular ITV programs “I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out of Here!” and “The X Factor.”

Flack’s career blossomed further after she won the BBC show “Strictly Come Dancing” in 2014, the British version of “Dancing With The Stars.” While hosting “Love Island,” Flack made her West End stage debut in 2018, playing Roxie Hart in the musical “Chicago.”

Her death led to a flood of tributes from fellow TV hosts and criticism of her treatment by the media. The Sun tabloid, for example, removed negative online articles about her soon after her death was announced.

Talent agent Jonathan Shalit told BBC radio that Flack received “more negative press than a terrorist or a paedophile” over the trial.

“These people might be famous, but they’re still vulnerable individuals,” Shalit said.

By Sunday evening, an online petition calling for a government inquiry into “the practices and policies of mainstream media organisations and social media platforms in their efforts to protect members of the public from harm” had garnered more than 191,000 signatures.

The Crown Prosecution Service has also come under criticism for pushing ahead with the trial in the face of Burton’s opposition, particularly from Flack’s management’s company.

“The CPS should look at themselves today and how they pursued a show trial that was not only without merit but not in the public interest,” said Francis Ridley of Money Talent Management. “And ultimately resulted in significant distress to Caroline.”