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NIACC award

Dustin Balsley, Jessica and Derek Balsley.

MASON CITY | The 2018 Pappapjohn Entrepreneur Gala celebrated North Iowa’s entrepreneurs on Wednesday, Sept. 26 at a special recognition event at North Iowa Area Community College in Mason City.

Entrepreneurs and businesses across North Iowa were invited to apply for four awards categories: Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year, the Innovation Award, and Business of the Year. Twelve finalists were named, and the winners were announced at the gala.

Dustin Balsley of Performance Livestock Analytics received Entrepreneur of the Year and was awarded $5,000.

Dustin Balsley co-founded Performance Livestock Analytics in 2015. Performance Livestock Analytics helps livestock producers, many of whom are family farmers right here in Iowa, solve complex data management issues and decisions in a volatile market. Performance Livestock Analytics has grown from a startup to an organization with over 1 million in revenue in three years, and has been recognized as one of the fastest growing Ag Tech companies in the United States, revolutionizing the livestock industry.

The Art of Education, founded by Jessica Balsley, Osage, received the Innovation Award and was awarded $5,000.

Jessica Balsley founded the Art of Education in 2011. The Art of Education has become the largest provider of professional development for art teachers around the world. By developing and implementing online courses, The Art of Education competes on a global level. The Art of Education's distance education courses, conferences, workshops, and other valuable resources provide unique and practical learning opportunities for every art teacher at every stage of their career.

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