The Eddie Oliver Entrepreneurship Spirit Award

Eddie Oliver

Every year since 2008, my family and I have sponsored a small monetary, annual award, The Eddie Oliver Entrepreneurial Spirit Award, for a student in honor of my late grandfather, Eddie Oliver (1924-2006). We have awarded $4,800 to student recipients, so far.

Integrated Design & Media (IDM, formerly Integrated Digital Media), NYU Tandon, Brooklyn, NY

• Lucas White, 2020
• Alexis Zerafa, 2018
• B. Edan McDevitt, 2017
• Matthew Conto, 2016

Multimedia, The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA

• Adam Samson, 2015
• Kenny Guglielmino, 2014
• Terry DiFeliciantonio, 2013
• John Bonaccorsi, 2012
• John Waller, 2011
• Josh Johnson, 2010
• Matt Trigaux, 2009
• Travis Mullen, 2008

My grandfather was an entrepreneur, but moreso he believed in having a vision and making things happen! He and his brother built the house (including all the electrical and plumbing) that my grandmother lived in until her passing in 2014. My grandparent’s first vehicle was not a car, but a dump truck so that my grandfather could make additional money beyond what he was making as a truck driver. In the 1960s, he created “Eddie’s Snack Bar,” which was a traveling convenience store that my late uncle, Eddie Jr. ran. When he retired from being a truck driver in 1986, he founded “Eddie’s Recycling,” a recycling center in Eutaw, Alabama that my grandmother and Uncle Carl ran until 2015. This is only a small sampling of what my grandfather accomplished without ever finishing high school. He always had a plan for the future.