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Seattle Incubator Director Named 2014 SBA Washington Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Release Date: 
Thursday, May 8, 2014
Release Number: 
SDOPR 14-05
Advisory Number: 
Sherry Mina (206) 553-7316

Neil Bergquist of SURF Incubator Takes Top Honors,
Celebration Recognizing Winners May 8 at Museum of Flight, Boeing Field

SEATTLE – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 2014 Washington Young Entrepreneur of the Year is Neil Bergquist, director of SURF Incubator in Seattle.

The SBA Washington Young Entrepreneur of the Year award recognizes entrepreneurs under the age of 30 who demonstrate a history of success; show increased jobs, innovative or creative business methods; and exhibit potential for future growth.

“Neil Bergquist is exactly what you picture when you think of a young, urban entrepreneur in a tech-booming city,” said Nancy Porzio, SBA Seattle district director. “He brings the same energy to his work growing local tech startups as he does to the creative ways he supports local nonprofits.”

SURF Incubator – a community-supported space for entrepreneurs – has helped more than 180 startups, orchestrated more than 500 social and educational events, and is now the largest tech incubator north of the Golden Gate Bridge.

In addition to his work in the tech startup community, Bergquist volunteers much of his time helping the local community by founding Snow Day and Party Camp, two organizations that have collectively raised more than $100,000 for local nonprofits such as the Boys and Girls Clubs of King County and Camp Korey. In fact, Bergquist’s organization of Snow Day set a Guinness Record for the world’s largest snowball fight.

“I feel incredibly fortunate to be a beneficiary of this dynamic, innovative and supportive community,” Bergquist said. “Local entrepreneurs are banding together to build economically and socially significant companies that create value far beyond our city’s limits. We all want each other to win and together we’ll make it happen.” 

The SBA 2014 Washington Young Entrepreneur of the Year will be recognized at a local awards ceremony event May 8 in conjunction with National Small Business Week May 12-16.

“National Small Business Week is a time to recognize the impact small business has on our country,” said SBA Regional Administrator Calvin Goings. “It’s a chance to celebrate the dedicated, hard-working small business owners who are making a difference in their communities.”

Each year since 1963, the President has issued a proclamation calling for the celebration of National Small Business Week. SBA recognizes outstanding small business owners for their personal successes and contributions to our nation.


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