Western Illinois University: Macomb Campus
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College of Business & Technology
Gene Poor, Spring 2008
Gene Poor received the 2004 Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Northwest Ohio for his vision and leadership in founding LifeFormations, an animatronics studio in Bowling Green, Ohio. The company designs and makes both static and animated figures for museums, theme parks, retail operations, and even restaurants. Recent projects completed by LifeFormations include creating and installing 50 characters for the Lincoln Library in Springfield, Illinois, and others for an African-American museum in Detroit; producing the characters for a “dark ride” about the biblical Solomon for a religious theme park in Israel; working on the new animated representative for the soft drink 7-Up, and making animated figures of Jekyll and Hyde for a new, themed restaurant in New York City. Gene Poor also is the Ernest and Dorothy Hamilton Endowed Professor of Entrepreneurship at Bowling Green State University and a professor of Visual Communication Technology at BGSU, a program he conceptualized in the late 1970’s.
His career has been a combination of university teaching, administration, research, and program development coupled with intense entrepreneurial innovation, product creation, training, and consultation within the private sector. During his career as both educator and entrepreneur, Gene has worked with over 400 companies, museums, theme parks and retail organizations. He has written numerous articles and eight books on several technology topics, and has made over 200 presentations throughout the United States, Europe, and the Middle East. Gene is a very creative business and academic leader who has succeeded by bringing business, technology, art, and education together. He is “the chief imagination officer” for LifeFormations.