This spring, PYA extended its support of entrepreneurship by partnering with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in support of the inaugural 2023 Rocky Top Business Awards. The awards program recognizes the nation’s fastest-growing UT Knoxville alumni-owned or alumni-led businesses.
“PYA was founded by UT graduates in 1983 as an entrepreneurial venture, and as we’ve grown across the country, we continue our long-standing tradition of supporting entrepreneurship,” said PYA President Marty Brown. “The Rocky Top Business Awards could not have come at a better time. In today’s difficult business climate, these UT alumni-led companies represent the Volunteer Spirit of dogged determination, relentless pursuit of excellence, and values-driven leadership. We’re delighted to have partnered with UT in the inaugural Rocky Top Business Awards as we advance the growth of the nation’s entrepreneur network and celebrate innovators who are beating the odds.”
On May 5, 2023, award winners and rankings were announced at a celebration event. Congratulations to first-place winner Axle Logistics, LLC, led by alumni Drew Johnson (’07) and Jon Clay (’09), and to all finalists. The event offered an opportunity for UT Knoxville alumni entrepreneurs to connect, learn from one another, and strengthen their entrepreneurial networks by sharing insights and experiences.
As one of the nation’s Top 100 CPA firms, PYA was pleased to partner with UT officials to establish awards criteria that ensure integrity and objectivity. PYA also reviewed award applications and accurately calculated the nominees’ compound annual growth rates, used to determine rankings for the awards.
“We enthusiastically accepted UT’s invitation to partner with them to ensure a successful and objective business awards program,” said PYA Principal Mike Shamblin. “We recognize the value of the awards to spotlight those UT alumni who are innovating and thriving despite a challenging business climate, and PYA is honored to have helped celebrate these hardworking entrepreneurs.”
The winners of the 2023 Rocky Top Business Awards meet criteria including longevity, revenues, and alumni leadership. The companies also must reflect the values of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. The awards program is organized by the UT Knoxville Alumni Association.
Enjoy a video about PYA’s partnership with UT in the 2023 Rocky Top Business Awards: