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1871 CEO Honored as Humanitarian in Business World

Alumnus and professor Howard Tullman wins Illinois Humanities Council Award

  • CEO of digital startup incubator fosters relationship between humanities and business
  • Award recognizes efforts to affect lives and communities through humanities
  • Tullman lectures on entrepreneurship and other topics at Northwestern Law and Kellogg
  • He is hailed for initiatives that engage political leaders, women, youth and people of color

EVANSTON, Ill. --- The Illinois Humanities Council (IHC) will honor Howard A. Tullman, CEO of digital startup incubator 1871 and an alumnus and adjunct professor of Northwestern University, with the 2015 Public Humanities Award at the council’s annual benefit luncheon on Thursday, May 14, at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago.

A serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, educator, writer, lecturer and art collector, Tullman has fostered a vibrant relationship between the humanities and business. Under his leadership, 1871 has become a globally renowned space for ideas, collaboration and innovation. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel called 1871 “a driving force for Chicago’s tech scene, creating jobs and opportunity.”

Tullman lectures regularly on venturing, change management and entrepreneurship at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management and Northwestern University School of Law.

Given annually by the IHC since 1984, the Public Humanities Award recognizes individuals and organizations that have helped transform lives and strengthened communities through the humanities.

“Business is a human pursuit, with creativity, innovation and collaboration serving as tenets for success,” said Angel Ysaguirre, IHC executive director. “Howard has highlighted these principles in the operations of 1871, with initiatives that engage political leaders, veterans, women, youth and people of color. He models the way the humanities can strengthen all aspects of life, including business.”

Throughout his career, Tullman has encouraged art as a vantage point for expression and digital innovation. He is a co-founder and former chairman and CEO of Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy, a premier digital media arts college in Chicago. He also served as president of Kendall College in Chicago and transformed the 70-year-old college into a major national leader in the culinary and hospitality education market.

Tullman received a bachelor’s degree from Northwestern in 1967 and a J.D. from the School of Law in 1970. At the School of Law, he graduated with honors, was elected to the Order of the Coif and served as the chairman of the editors of The Law Review. He is the author of “The Perspiration Principles” and writes a weekly blog for Inc. magazine.

“Howard is a cultural phenomenon,” said Joel Henning, IHC board member and one of this year’s co-chairs. “I’m delighted to help honor a man who has done more than anyone here to nurture high-tech creativity and entrepreneurialism and also stimulate cutting-edge contemporary art, all of which has vastly enhanced the economics and culture of Illinois and indeed the entire country.” 

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