My hero is Gene W. Gene has started more than a dozen companies in his lifetime. He started out working in the laser industry when it was still in its infancy in the 1940s. In his early days in Silicon Valley he often associated with pioneers of the era like Dave Packard and Bell Hewlett. Dave Packard in particular, was a major influence on Gene. Mr. Packard was often known to say 'I don't care what you do; just make sure it is the right thing.'
Since those days, Gene has been involved in starting dozens of companies, including Coherent, a laser company he founded which later went public. Gene has tried to retire many times, but each time the entrepreneurial bug comes back and he comes out of retirement. Gene just turned 80 in December 2007 and is busier than ever. He serves on the board for several high-tech start-ups and runs the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program for the state of Wyoming. I am very fortunate to have Gene on my board at Handel Information Technologies. Each time I have to make a difficult decision I think 'is this the right thing to do?' Usually, this makes my decision easier because it allows me to at least eliminate some of the 'wrong' choices. Thanks to Gene giving up retirement for good, another generation of high-tech entrepreneurs gets to benefit from his advice.
Submitted by Anonymous
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