Mr. Steve L. Poizner – 2014

An engineer, entrepreneur, elected official, educator, and advocate for reform, Steve Poizner has left a lasting mark on Silicon Valley and California, created technology that is used by millions of Americans on a daily basis, and proved that a true entrepreneurial spirit can used to find solutions in the business world, public service, and education. His first company, Strategic Mapping Inc., assisted police departments, utilities, transportation companies, banks and retailers with selecting new locations and optimizing distribution logistics. Poizner then founded his second company, SnapTrack, which pioneered life-saving technology that integrated GPS receivers into cell phones.

Poizner was selected to be a White House Fellow, starting one week before the September 11, 2001 attacks. He was responsible for issues such as emergency communications planning for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City and protecting internet/banking system/power grids from cyber attacks.

Ever passionate about improving education, Poizner spent a year as a volunteer teacher at Mount Pleasant High School in San Jose and co-founded the California Charter Schools Association, the state’s leading charter school organization. Steve Poizner was later elected California Insurance Commissioner, one of only eight statewide elected positions in California. He is highly credited for overhauling the entire state agency by cutting operating expenses by nearly 15% while implementing one of the strongest consumer protection programs in the state’s history.

His latest company, EmpoweredU, has developed a groundbreaking mobile learning platform, used by universities to create flipped, hybrid, and online classes.