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SBI is the premier organization engaging business, education and the community

The mission of the Small Business Institute® is to be the premier provider of professional development for those engaged in experiential student team consulting and related entrepreneurship education, research and activities. SBI is the link between business, education and community.

Letter from our President

 Dr. Andrew Holt

Metropolitan State University of Denver

Patrick D. Walker

February 23, 1973 - June 17, 2021

The Small Business Institute® is sad to report the loss of Patrick D. Walker. Whether you have known Patrick for years, or whether you have only met him for a few minutes, it is likely that Patrick has had a profoundly positive influence on you. Patrick served on the SBI® Board from 2013 – 2018 and as our President during 2016-2017. His commitment and service to SBI extends well beyond that, and his impact on our organization and its members will always be remembered. 

Patrick received his bachelor’s degree in Biology and a Masters of Business Administration from Hampton University, and received his Juris Doctorate from Regent University School of Law. Patrick was an award-winning professor of Business Law and Management at Lindenwood University, Hampton University, and most recently as the Ruth Jones Lewis Faculty Scholar in Entrepreneurship and Free Enterprise in the Lewis Honors College at the University of Kentucky.

Patrick embodied everything the Small Business Institute® represents. His steadfast dedication to the Entrepreneurship field, the small business community, and his many students provides an example for all of us. The extraordinary way Patrick set that example is the true character of the man, with his kindness and love immersed in all of those relationships. Whitney Peake, a close friend and colleague, said of Patrick “He had such a positive energy about him and carried that into anything and everything he did. He led and educated with the utmost kindness and inclusion and put all his heart into the students he taught and communities and organizations he served. He was truly a bright light and will be greatly missed by all of us who knew him”. Patrick was an amazing colleague and true friend to many of us in the SBI®, but he was equally passionate about developing his students and impacting their lives. While Patrick’s true legacy is his positive impact on students’ lives, his students have also won many awards at our Small Business Institute® Annual Conferences, including at the most recent conference. Patrick’s most recent student to win, Aisley Stuebs, shared that “as a professor, Dr. Walker wholeheartedly believed in the potential of his students and was there to support them however he could. While I was one of his students at the University of Kentucky, Dr. Walker inspired, encouraged, and challenged me to become a more fearless version of myself. Because of his mentorship, the person I am today is significantly stronger and determined never to give up on what I set my mind to. He embodied what it means to have a servant heart and entrepreneurial mind. As part of his legacy, I will continue to chase after my dreams and serve those around me however I can.”

The SBI® will forever remember the impact Patrick has had on it and its members. Patrick would humbly deflect, but it is obvious that he gave more to SBI® than he could ever receive, and for this we are grateful. His friend and colleague, Mike Harris, shared that “Patrick was such a passionate SBI member. He was an accomplished professional with multiple POY and Best Practices Awards, and he always invested time in mentoring future SBI leaders. Most importantly, he was a caring person who always had a smile on his face. We shared many good times together – he was a true friend. That is his true legacy, and he will be greatly missed.”  To honor Patrick’s legacy and dedication to SBI® and his students, we will have a tribute to him during our next conference.  We hope to see you all at the 2022 Small Business Institute® Annual Conference, where many stories will be shared and tears shed, as we remember this this amazing person.  

Member Spotlight

Ken Klotz - Bradley University

Bradley University's Big Idea Competition

Bradley University's Turner School of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Managing Director, Ken Klotz, provides an interview on their Big Idea Competition. Read the full spotlight to learn more about how this innovative structure might work for your program! 


Photos from the 2019 Conference

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