Glenn House '83 Named to the Inaugural Class of the University’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Hall of Fame
An accomplished entrepreneur Glenn House '83, a graduate of the University of New Haven's electrical engineering program who has spearheaded the creation of three start-up companies, praised the University's commitment to fostering students' creativity.
January 22, 2019
By Jackie Hennessey, contributing writer
Glenn D. House was working as a senior vice president of strategy and operations at Mentor Graphics, overseeing 2,200 employees in a company that did half a billion dollars in business, when he decided he wanted to strike out on his own. “I wanted go into small companies and build small businesses because I wanted to make an impact,” he said. “When you want to change a big company, it takes years to make small corrections. In a small company, you can make a correction in a day.”
House went on to create three start-ups. “I went into a small company in the internet boom, built it up, sold that one. I bought a small supply chain company, built that up and sold that one,” he said. In 2002, he co-founded 2Is Inc., a military supply chain analytics firm with clients including the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), Ministries of Defense and major original equipment manufacturers.
Although he’s been with 2Is for 16 years, the imagining, inventing and creating continue apace. “We’ve reinvented ourselves as a company no less than three times,” he said.
To honor his achievements as an entrepreneur, House was inducted into the inaugural class of the University’s Entrepreneurship and Innovation Hall of Fame last spring. “It’s always nice to be recognized by your alma mater, but it’s also great to see your alma mater moving in a direction where you’ve made your life’s work,” House said. “I’m very enthusiastic about the fact that the University is really stepping into entrepreneurship.”
On the night he was inducted, House also served on the panel of judges in the Alvine New Venture Pitch Competition. He applauded the University’s emphasis on creativity and innovation, providing experiences like the Alvine competition and spaces like the University Innovation and Design Makerspace where students can test new ideas.
“I’m very enthusiastic about the fact that the University is really stepping into entrepreneurship."Glenn D. House
“You need an environment where aspiring entrepreneurs feel safe to try out ideas, to fail and to try again, and the Deans are providing that,” he said. “The difference between highs and lows in an entrepreneurial venture is a nanosecond. Having a good grip on your ability to deal with failure and being able to morph that failure into success and forward direction is so important.”
In a field like technology where change is constant, a climate that “fosters innovation,” is imperative, House said. When he was developing 2Is he said he knew “the social model was as important as the business model,” he said.
The key, he said, is hiring diverse thinkers who bring their own ideas to projects, who know how to collaborate and who aren’t afraid of challenges. “If you have the freedom to do what needs to be done and you incorporate the thinking of others, how much management does there need to be?” he asked. “Unlocking potential of your employees in an entrepreneurial venture is absolutely essential.”
As an innovator, House said he has to “be constantly staying current, constantly learning and taking classes and constantly understanding what the latest technology is,” he said. “I’ve chosen a field where I’m on a treadmill all the time. I love it. The benefit of being on a treadmill as long as you run fast, there’s not a lot of people to compete with.”
“You need an environment where aspiring entrepreneurs feel safe to try out ideas, to fail and to try again, and the Deans are providing that."Glenn D. House
While always looking forward, House said he also relies heavily on the knowledge he gained as an electrical engineering student at the University. “I was blessed to have gone to the University of New Haven,” he said. “The Electrical Engineering department faculty members were a tightknit, very bright team and you studied with a professor in a class of 10-12 people. You knew your professors and they knew you very well.”
He noted that “there’s not a day that goes by when I’m not dealing with calculus, statistics and random variables. What I learned from the professors in Electrical Engineering and the professors in Mathematics has been with me throughout my career.”
As an undergraduate, House had to juggle working full-time while attending the University full-time. “That was only possible because the professors cared," he said. “That’s why the University of New Haven was so strong and remains strong; they are motivated, in-touch teaching professionals who truly care about their students’ success. It’s exciting to see where the University is heading.”