CEO Tom James nabs entrepreneur award
Kudos to St. Petersburg's Raymond James Financial Inc. Company CEO Tom James Saturday night was named the 2008 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year national winner in the financial services category. He was honored at a Jay Leno-hosted gala in Palm Springs on the final evening of the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum, a gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies. Awards were given in nine additional categories. All winners (here's the complete list) were selected by an independent panel of judges from approximately 400 regional award recipients. The overall winner was Matthew Szulik, chairman of open-source software leader Red Hat Inc.
In June, awards were announced at the state level, setting up the winners to vie for Saturday's national awards. Area winners at the state level included James, as well as (in financial services category) CEO David Serlo of PSCU Financial Services Inc. in St. Petersburg, and (in retail/consumer category) CEO Mark Johnston, Chairman Mike Johnston and president Bob Johnston of fondue-based The Melting Pot Restaurants Inc. in Tampa.
-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist