Cincinnati Business Achievement Awards

The Cincinnati Business Achievement Awards (CBAAs), presented by the University of Cincinnati Carl H. Lindner College of Business Alumni Council, is the region’s longest-standing event that recognizes achievement in business as well as service to communities, both locally and globally.

Our university has a rich, 200-year legacy of innovation and impact. The CBAAs are just one way our college honors those who embody UC’s strategic directionNext Lives Here, while setting the stage for current and future students — the next generation of business leaders — to achieve success. 

This flagship event for our college also directly impacts the Lindner student experience by raising funds for scholarships and financial assistance at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

The 2023 CBAAs

The 2023 Cincinnati Business Achievement Awards will be held Wednesday, March 8, 2023, at the Cincinnati Museum Center in Union Terminal.

This year's event coincides with the 25th anniversary of UC's Center for Entrepreneurship. To celebrate this special milestone, attendees will experience a brand-new event format at the iconic Cincinnati Museum Center.

2023 Honorees

Carl H. Lindner Award for Outstanding Business Achievement

Kerry Byrne, Bus ’87


Kerry Byrne, Bus ’87.

President, Total Quality Logistics (TQL)

The Lindner Award is the highest honor a Lindner graduate can receive at the CBAAs, with a focus on entrepreneurial spirit, a commitment to business and reaching the highest levels of success within one’s profession. Kerry Byrne attributes his sustained success to those he’s able to work with since graduating from UC’s College of Business in 1987.

“Anyone will tell you it's easy to win when you're a part of a good team. We tell our new team members at TQL that two things you can control are your work ethic and your attitude,” said Byrne, member of Lindner dean Marianne Lewis’s Business Advisory Council. “I think I figured that out early on and then tried to grow, learn and develop from there. But at the end of the day, I'm just part of the team.” 

Distinguished Service Award

Van Jones, Bus ’08


Van Jones, Bus ’08.

Deal Lead, Diverse Founders Investing, Wellington Management

Van Jones majored in finance and marketing and minored in real estate and emerging markets management at Lindner. Jones’ numerous professional accomplishments include co-founding the startup Hello Tractor in 2014. He transitioned into venture capital in 2019.

Honoring commitment to Lindner, UC and the community, the Distinguished Service Awardees have given generously of their time, talent or treasure, directly impacting the Lindner student experience and helping students succeed beyond graduation. Past award recipients have served as long-term mentors for student programs and organizations, or have gone beyond funding a scholarship and led initiatives at the college. 

Jones’ volunteer service to both Lindner and UC across multiple disciplines showcases his dedication as an alumnus. For example, in fall 2021, Jones spoke virtually to Bearcat Ventures, UC’s student venture capital organization. 

Charles H. Matthews, PhD, Bus ’90


Charles H. Matthews, PhD, Bus ’90.

Distinguished Teaching Professor of Entrepreneurship and Strategy, Department of Management

Charles Matthews, PhD, founder of what was first known as the Center for Entrepreneurship and Commercialization, is an award-winning teacher and internationally recognized scholar in the field of entrepreneurship.

Matthews said the initial idea for the Center was to examine not just corporate America and the building of the economy, but the emerging startup scene, too.

“We really wanted to focus on this phenomenon of small business, entrepreneurship and innovation,” Matthews said.

Business Partnership Award: Refinery Ventures


The Business Partnership Award recognizes a business or organization that supports Lindner and local communities. Refinery Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm based in downtown Cincinnati, is an ideal partner for Lindner in the arena of entrepreneurship.

Refinery Ventures Managing Partner Tim Schigel noted that companies can benefit from partnering with Lindner, notably to organize co-ops or internships with Lindner's business problem solvers.

“Interns will have questions you may not ask as a veteran of the industry or somebody who is close to your customers,” Schigel said. “Having people in your company with a fresh perspective can be helpful.”

PACEsetter Award

The PACEsetter award recognizes several alumni who practice the four values woven throughout Lindner courses and the overall student experience: Professionalism, Academics, Character and Engagement. Given the unique focus of the 2023 CBAAs, a non-Lindner alumnus is being highlighted.

  • Paul Bessire, Bus '04
  • Brandon Reynolds, Bus '15
  • Andrew Salzbrun, Bus '08
  • Kesha Williams, PhD, CAHS '02

Carl H. Lindner Outstanding Junior Scholarship

As one of the oldest scholarships at UC that bears the Lindner name, the Carl H. Lindner Outstanding Junior Scholarship recognizes an undergraduate student who best exemplifies the energy, commitment and creativity of Carl H. Lindner — shown through their work in the classroom, and their commitment to UC.

Stay tuned for the reveal of this scholarship winner.

The Heart of William J. Keating Leadership Award

This award and scholarship bears the name of prominent Cincinnati lawyer William (Bill) Keating, Jr., and honors his longtime service as president of the Lindner Business Advisory Council. When Keating passed away in 2017, former Lindner dean Dave Szymanski established the Heart of William J. Keating, Jr. Leadership Award to recognize a junior business student for their outstanding service to the university and community.

“If you knew my dad, this was his life’s purpose: To make his community a better place for the next generation,” said Liz Keating, daughter of Bill Keating, Jr., during her remarks presenting the award at the 34th annual CBAAs in March 2019.

Stay tuned for the reveal of this scholarship winner.

Contact Us

Headshot of Victoria Kuhlman

Victoria Kuhlman

Program Director, Alumni & Donor Experience

4120 Carl H. Lindner Hall