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Capitol Achiever Kate Cyrul '00

Alumna is Front and Center in Washington, D.C.

In January 1997, as a Bentley freshman, Kate Cyrul ’00 took a bus from campus to Washington, D.C., to stand in the crowd for President Bill Clinton’s second inauguration. She was on hand again for Barack Obama’s swearing-in, admittedly with better seats.

Cyrul arrived at the history-making occasion by way of Ohio. Last fall, the nine-year veteran of Washington politics took a leave from her job with Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin to manage an Obama field office in Cleveland.

He's Number One: Kwadwo Asare, PhD

In May 2009, Kwadwo “Kojo” Asare made history as the first recipient of a doctoral degree from Bentley University. In addition to the PhD in Accountancy, he holds an MS in Computer Information Systems (earned in 1994, also from Bentley), an MBA from Cornell University, and a BS in Accounting from St. Francis College. The native of Ghana, West Africa, is also a CPA with years of business experience. This fall he took up duties as an assistant professor of accountancy at Bryant University.

Wioletta Zywina ’02, ’03 MSIAM: Well-Seasoned Venture

It takes nerve to open a high-end restaurant on the cusp of a financial meltdown. Even in the best of times, the dining scene is littered with might-have-beens. Wioletta Zywina ’02, ’03 MSIAM and her partner, Shingara “Peppino” Singh, have mixed nerve with marketing smarts and fabulous food to prosper in Boston’s South End. They opened Da Vinci in November 2007.

Zywina’s story is a classic American archetype. She came to the United States from her native Poland at age 18, barely speaking English. After a stint at the University of Southern Maine, she transferred to Bentley.

Jonathan Gilinski '02: Building a Better Pill

Subscribing, perhaps, to the Mary Poppins school of medicine, Jonathan Gilinski ’02 has created a more palatable pill. His Florida-based company, Capsuline, produces gelatin capsules in a variety of flavors and colors.

Upon earning his BS in Marketing, the alumnus trained an entrepreneurial eye on an industry where his family has considerable history. He spotted an opportunity to create a business around a common problem.

Juan Yepez '95: Rising Above

While on a business trip in 2006, Juan Yepez ’95 got some news no entrepreneur wants to hear: A local river was rising, threatening to spill over into the city that serves as home base for his young company.

It was the worst flooding the Merrimack Valley had seen since March 1936. Yepez’s independent distribution company, Mainstream Global, lost a large portion
of inventory and sustained damage to its newly purchased office and warehouse building in Lawrence, Mass.

Doug Bard '94: Accidental Entrepreneur

Sometimes imagination is all it takes to turn disaster into opportunity. Just ask Doug Bard ’94, who launched a new career in the wake of an all-too-familiar desktop mishap.

On April Fool’s Day 2004, Bard was busily making real estate deals at his home office, when he reached for a cup of coffee. He missed the mark and knocked hot java all over his work. The result was a blown computer, ruined notes, and a dead phone — a few thousand dollars’ worth of trouble from a momentary distraction.

Scholarship Honors a 'Jet-Setting' Uncle

When Jeffrey Gross ’88 looks back at the major role models in his life, one person stands out: Donald Jensen '59. “As a kid, I knew Uncle Donny as this very successful, jet-setting guy,” remembers Gross, who is pictured with wife Cindy (Soucy) ’88 . “He was a business executive. When I was 16 or 17 and looking at his success, I thought business might be in my future as well.”

The Real Deal in Real Estate: Gregg Liscotti '91

Gregg Lisciotti ’91 hasn’t lost sleep over the real estate market’s current tailspin. That’s saying something, since he runs a real estate development company.

“There are significant opportunities for those who understand the market, have readily available capital, and can move quickly when deals present themselves,” observes the president of Massachusetts-based Lisciotti Development.

Elementary Lessons for CEOs: Scott Morency ’06, ’07 MST

One could say that Scott Morency is a little ambitious. When not at work as an assurance associate at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Boston, the alumnus promotes and sells What a CEO Can Learn From a 4th Grader, which he wrote and released in 2008 through his own publishing company.

The book chronicles lessons that Morency learned in creating and implementing a service–learning project at Bentley. He is pictured here with Brooke Gilson.

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