The University of Iowa Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development and John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center will have a robust presence this week during EntreFEST 2015 in downtown Iowa City, including a presentation by Vice President Dan Reed on “Extreme Computing: The Disruptive Rise of Clouds” at 10:30 a.m. Friday. 

Additionally, the Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development (OVPR&ED) will sponsor The Technology Association of Iowa (TAI) Tech Town Hall Iowa City during EntreFEST.

EntreFEST, which runs May 20-22, is an entrepreneurial conference jointly sponsored by the UI, the University of Northern Iowa, and Iowa State University for people looking to expand their business, create new opportunities, and meet some of the smartest and most cutting-edge minds in their respective fields. For schedule, registration, and fee information, visit

The conference will host start-up founders, business owners, corporate innovators, and ecosystem builders and is open to anyone looking to build the future of business, economy, and community in Iowa.  

Intel co-founder Andy Grove famously remarked, “Only the paranoid survive.” In his presentation Friday, Reed will explore the question: “As social, economic, cultural, and technological change accelerates, how do organizations and companies adapt and respond when old markets disappear or are cannibalized by new competitors?” His talk will draw on academic, government, and corporate experiences to discuss how high technology companies embrace paranoia and survive.

In addition to Reed’s talk, OVPR&ED and UI JPEC will have a number of other speakers and activities during the three-day event, including:

UI Partners, which provides IT solutions to Iowa small businesses, is the official sponsor of the official EntreFEST Lounge space in the former Wedge location on the Pedestrian Mall, where attendees can network, relax, and get free Wi-Fi.

The UI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC) will staff information tables at The Englert Theatre and EntreFEST Lounge.

UI JPEC Director Lynn Allendorf will speak on "Venture School Lite” at 9 a.m. Wednesday.

UI JPEC and four other JPECs from around the state will co-host a Networking Social for former participants in the Pappajohn Iowa Entrepreneurial Venture Competition (formerly Pappajohn Iowa Business Plan Competition) 4:30 to 6 p.m. Wednesday in the Share Lounge of the Sheraton Hotel.

The five Iowa JPECs will present JPEC founder John Pappajohn a Lifetime Achievement Award in the Englert Theatre during the Morning Plenary Session 8 a.m. Thursday.

David K. Hensley, UI JPEC executive director, clinical professor and OVPR&ED associate vice president for economic development, will lead a fireside chat with JPEC founder John Pappajohn titled "Venture School Lite” at 9 a.m. Thursday.

JPEC will hold a Mini Pitch Competition as part of the Pappajohn Iowa Entrepreneurial Venture Competition, Thursday, 2-4:30pm, Thinc, 122 E. Market St. Winners of the Mini Pitch Competition will be announced during the closing keynote, 2 p.m. Friday, Englert Theatre.

Hensley will speak as part of a panel on "Entrepreneurial Resources of the Regent Universities” at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday.

Zach Sanderson, Program Coordinator for the UI Partners Dev/Iowa program, will speak as part of a panel on "Building a Local Code School” from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

“EntreFEST is beneficial for business owners in Iowa because it allows certain people from different niche communities to come together and interact in a way that they might not have done previously,” Sanderson said. “For example, people from the tech community might bump into other people from different areas that they wouldn’t have interacted with before.”

EntreFEST keynote speakers include marketing genius and best-selling author Seth Godin.  Godin will speak during Friday afternoon and share his insights on marketing, leadership, and creativity.  Godin is an established author of many best-selling books which include: Tribes, Linchpin and Purple Cow and 15 other best-sellers.

Other scheduled speakers include Shonna Dorsey, Managing Director & Co-Founder at Interface: The Web School; Sumeet Jain, Co-Founder at Omaha Code School; Brian Waller, President at Technology Association of Iowa; Ben Milne, CEO/Founder of Dwolla; Jacquie Berglund, CEO/Founder of FINNEGAN’s Beer; Julie Lenzer Kirk, Director of the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the U.S. Department of Commerce; Trevor Owens, Author of The Lean Enterprise; Cameron Ewing, Creative Director of Facebook; Sarah Kunst, Venture Capitalist and Partner at Fortis; Patrick Riley, CEO of the Global Accelerator Network; Bruce Rastetter, CEO of the Summit Group and president of the Iowa board of Regents; and Dr. Terry Wahls, Author of The Wahls Protocol.  

The Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development is committed to providing resources and support to researchers and scholars at the University of Iowa and to businesses across Iowa with the goal of forging new frontiers of discovery and innovation and promoting a culture of creativity that benefits the campus, the state, and the world. More at, and on Twitter: @DaretoDiscover.