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St. Thomas, ON (December 12, 2011) – The Innovation Centre for Entrepreneurs (ICE), St. Thomas and Elgin County’s first mixed-use business incubator, announces the Rotary Club of St Thomas Foundation’s sponsorship. This Sponsor has recognized that Canada’s entrepreneurs are the backbone of our economy and by supporting the ICE initiative they are contributing to the success of small businesses and driving the economic development of St. Thomas and Elgin County.

Susan M. Gardner, Executive Editor of Municipal World magazine and past President of EBRC is President of ICE. She says. “As President of ICE, we move forward with our vision for encouraging the youth entrepreneurs of St Thomas and Elgin County, and all the work and partnerships that will make that vision a reality.”

“We’re extremely grateful to the Rotary Club of St Thomas Foundation for their generous investment at this sponsorship level,” says John Regan, General Manager, Elgin Business Resource Centre. “The commitment to St. Thomas and Elgin County’s revitalization of new business ventures is vital to the communities that we serve, and now, more than ever before, fundamental to the economic advancement and expansion of the region for our youth.”

“It has been extremely rewarding to work with our new ICE business clients. The support and contributions of our sponsors makes the difference in fulfilling the incubation program’s strategic vision including the success of youth entrepreneurs.” explains Delia Reiche, ICE Business Development Manager. “The Rotary Club of St Thomas Foundation supports youth in many aspects of the community and ICE is pleased to partner with the Rotary to encourage local youth entrepreneurship.”

As another partnership for youth in our area, University of Western Ontario operates Students In Free Enterprise (SIFE). SIFE has developed a business plan competition for the students of St Thomas and Elgin County with a $1000 first prize contribution for the winning business plan. In a collaborative arrangement with SIFE, ICE with the support of the Rotary Club of St Thomas Foundation sponsorship will provide incubation programming for a youth interested in launching their business.