Steven Dorfman Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

About the Grants

As a philanthropic and educational initiative, the Dorfman Incubator Grant program was created with a $1 million gift from Steven Dorfman to provide funding to companies and individuals pursuing innovation through startups.

It favors entrepreneurs who are in the very early stages of startup creation, when outside sources of funding are nearly impossible to find. The grant is non-dilutive. Cal Lutheran does not take an equity interest in the startup, nor does it consider the grant to be a debt.

The grant will always have an educational purpose. Awardees are required to share their experiences with Cal Lutheran students, faculty and community, in the form of guest lectures, case studies and podcasts.

These grants, to be known as Dorfman Grants, will be awarded to up to five student and/or alumni recipients annually. The Dorfman Grants Fund will be fully distributed over seven years. All grant recipients must include a CLU student in the funded project. The student must be included as a co-founder, an intern, a research assistant, an apprentice, or other role that gives the student hands-on experience in designing and launching a new product or program.

About Steven Dorfman

Steven DorfmanMr. Dorfman served as CEO of Hughes Space and Communications Co., Hughes Telecommunications and Space, and Hughes Communications. During his time at Hughes, his responsibilities ranged from directing the landing of five probes on Venus to helping create DirecTV.

Mr. Dorfman has served on the boards of Hughes, Raytheon and many other companies and on advisory committees to NASA, the Air Force, the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Transportation, among others.

He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and received NASA’s highest honor, the Distinguished Public Service Award. After his retirement in 1999, he taught as a visiting professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Mr. Dorfman has been a member of the School of Management’s Advisory Council and the Dean’s Executive Council for several years.