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12/5/2004

Cordova resigning as president of CTEK

By Tony Kindelspire
The Daily Times-Call

LONGMONT — Lu Cordova plans to resign her position as president of CTEK Venture Centers sometime in early 2005.

She is not leaving the organization, she said, but will step aside for someone else to fill the role of president.

“Starting in 2005, I really want to focus on CTEK Angels,” Cordova said last week as she prepared for the move of the CTEK Venture Centers offices to the World Trade Center in downtown Denver.

CTEK Angels is a group that helps match private investors with entrepreneurs who are CTEK clients.

Cordova said she wants to “really focus on making that a statewide organization, just as we have on the mentoring side.”

CTEK began as the Boulder Technology Incubator in 1989, and its first offices were in Longmont.

Joining BTI in early 2001, Cordova soon changed the name to CTEK and worked on expanding the mission of the organization from being just a business incubator.

Jerry Donahue, who spent nearly 10 years as the president of BTI and was Cordova’s predecessor, said he is proud to see what she’s been able to accomplish in the past 31/2 years.

“She took 150 to 200 business advisers that had developed under my tenure, and developed it to, I would say, somewhere around 700,” Donahue said. “It’s a huge network.”

Cordova, who came here from the West Coast and was successful in her own business career, also gave a lot of credit to Donahue, who provided advice to her even after she was hired.

“I want to do for the next person coming in what was done for me,” she said. “No one will ever know the extent to which Jerry’s hand has been a guiding force to what I’ve been able to do, what CTEK has been able to do.”

Cordova said she hopes the CTEK Venture Centers board will find a replacement for her by February, and that she’ll step down from her position as president by May.

A nationwide search is being conducted for her successor, she said.

“We’ve looking at some skill sets that aren’t quite like mine,” Cordova said.

Given that CTEK Venture Centers is now statewide, licensing venture centers across Colorado as its has in Longmont, Cordova said there will be more emphasis for the president on things like politics and grant writing.

Donahue, whose three-year term on the CTEK board expires soon, said taking the organization statewide means that the governor’s office is involved, and that will change the way the organization does business.

“Lu doesn’t see herself as a political or bureaucratic person, and she feels, as many of us board members do, we need somebody who can navigate, in a bipartisan way, the needs of economic development across the state,” he said.

Tony Kindelspire can be reached at 303-776-2244, Ext. 291, or by e-mail at tkindelspire@times-call.com.