Jan. 9, 2024
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The University of West Georgia recently named Raja Bhattacharya, who brings years of higher education and leadership experience, as the inaugural director of the Stone Center for Family Business, Entrepreneurship and Innovation.

Raja Bhattacharya

The Stone Center for Family Business, Entrepreneurship and Innovation serves as a crucial resource for family businesses in the West Georgia region. With a mission to address family enterprises’ unique opportunities and challenges, the center’s impact is positioned to expand under Bhattacharya’s leadership. 

“I am truly excited about the initiatives that UWG leadership has taken in bringing entrepreneurship education and experience at its core,” said Bhattacharya, who began his appointment at UWG on Jan. 2. “At the Stone Center, we have a unique opportunity to work with and grow family business nationally through innovative and cutting-edge training and mentoring programs.” 

One of the key highlights of the Stone Center’s offerings is its support for students through programming such as Entrepreneurship Week and the Wolf Den Pitch Competition. These initiatives not only bolster the entrepreneurial spirit among UWG students but also provide them with valuable opportunities to engage with local business leaders who have successfully launched their ventures.

“The foundation of entrepreneurial learning is based on listening, observing, experimenting, dreaming and taking calculated risks,” explained Bhattacharya. “Through the support from Stone Center, I would love to see all UWG students, regardless of their major and GPA, not only think about a business or social idea but actually take steps to make that a reality during their educational journey.”

Bhattacharya, an MBA graduate from Western Kentucky University, brings two decades of experience in developing entrepreneurial ecosystems for institutions like Columbia College and Northampton Community College. His professional journey also includes founding a startup and collaborating with renowned organizations like the Kauffman Foundation and the Ben Franklin TechVentures.

Dean of the Richards College of Business, Dr. Christopher Johnson, said Bhattacharya’s initiatives and leadership experience will produce enhanced outcomes for students at UWG. 

“We are thrilled to welcome Raja Bhattacharya and his vision for fostering entrepreneurship, which aligns seamlessly with our university’s commitment to providing transformative education experiences,” said Johnson. “His leadership will undoubtedly enhance the impact of the Stone Center, and we look forward to the innovative programs and opportunities he will bring to our students and the broader community.”