February 18, 2014

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Forty Under 40

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Article

Forty Under 40

Celebrating Utah’s Rising Stars

By Utah Business editors | Photos by Eric Delphenich

February 18, 2014

Peeler says determination, conscientiousness and boldness are vital to an entrepreneur’s success. “If a business professional can develop these qualities, they will be committed to critical tasks, driven by an attention to detail and bold enough to fight for the end user, client, co-worker or company,” he says. “This is true for any professional, from a c-level employee to my nine-year-old son.”

Ben Peterson | CEO, BambooHR

Ben Peterson’s entrepreneurial footprint is large in Utah. Peterson founded MingleMatch in 2001, which was acquired by Spark Networks in 2005. He was also a co-founder of Utah Best, now known as Allegiance Technologies. Peterson’s most recent success story is BambooHR, a global SaaS HR technology company. Launched in 2008, BambooHR has helped companies like Pinterest and Fitbit with their HR needs.

“I love the web and building software that reaches around the globe. So many opportunities exist online to build things that make life a better experience,” he says.

Beyond his own companies, Peterson is avid about helping other entrepreneurs reach success. He serves on the incubator board for CEDO, is a member of BYU’s Associate Entrepreneur Founders Organization and is an active angel investor.

A piece of advice he offers entrepreneurs is that a successful company starts with successful employees. “We believe work should be an outlet for greatness. When people are passionate about what they do, they can accomplish great things.”

Shaun Ritchie | CEO, Ender Labs

Shaun Ritchie has been an entrepreneur for basically his entire life, but things really took off when he co-founded Neutron Interactive, an internet marketing and online lead generation company, right out of college in 2002. Together with his business partner, he’s grown that company considerably over the last several years, earning spots on the Inc. 500 list two years in a row.

More recently, Ritchie co-founded a venture-backed enterprise software company, Ender Labs, which developed EventBoard, a conference room calendaring display and analytics solution to make businesses more efficient.

“I enjoy seeing the positive impact that a business can have on the lives of its employees, customers and the community,” he says. “More specifically about our company, I love seeing the impact that EventBoard is having on our customers’ businesses, and the global reach that we’re having from a small startup in Utah.”

Ritchie currently serves as the president of the Utah Chapter of Entrepreneurs Organization, a nonprofit organization that engages leading entrepreneurs to learn and grow. He also started the Utah competitions for the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards.

Phil Robinson | CEO, i.t.NOW

Phil Robinson started working at a computer repair shop in 1992 while still in high school. In 1997, he bought out that company and became its sole owner and only employee. Over the course of several years and a rebranding to i.t.NOW in 2005, Robinson has grown the company to 19 employees and $2.2 million annual gross income.

Because technology is always changing, Robinson has to keep his employees and data centers up to date on the latest processes. While this can be a challenge, Robinson knows there is a huge need for the services his company provides.

“People can no longer function without technology,” he says. “They depend on it now more than ever, and I don’t see that trend ever going the other way. As far as important jobs go, I put doctors first and IT guys second.”

With his never-stop-improving attitude, Robinson realizes the importance of having a “willingness to get in the trenches, show employees that you care and help them understand how important what they do is.”

Jason Rogers | Senior Vice President of Branch Administration, Mountain America Credit Union

Over the last decade, Jason Rogers has served in many capacities at Mountain America Credit Union. During his tenure in branch administration, Mountain America’s branch network has expanded to include 76 branches operating in five states, making it the fifth largest credit union branch network in the United States.

In recognition of Rogers’ many contributions to Mountain America and the many outstanding programs he’s instituted, the credit union recently presented him with the highest company honor, The Summit Award, which goes to peak performers.

Rogers has been instrumental in helping to build and form constructive teams, improving member service, improving the training and coaching of the branch employees, developing employees and building upon the culture of the credit union.

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