Award-winning UND student rings NASDAQ closing bell

Pierson Painter, Red River Valley Business Plan Competition winner, represents UND’s Nistler College of Business & Public Administration in ringing the bell

As part of the bell-ringing events on Sept. 2, a 30-second, UND-produced video ran for an hour – in continues rotation – on this seven-story billboard towering above Times Square. The billboard also featured the bell-ringing ceremony at the hour’s halfway point. Photography courtesy of Nasdaq, Inc.

At 3 p.m. Central on Sept. 2, UND’s Nistler College of Business & Public Administration, for the first time, rang the closing bell for the NASDAQ Stock Exchange.

Representing the college – and ringing the bell remotely from North Dakota – was Pierson Painter, a Nistler College student and winner of this year’s Red River Valley Business Plan Competition.

Amy Henley, Dean of the Nistler College, and Robert Warren, Instructor in the College’s Department of Marketing, joined Painter in the virtual ringing of the bell.

Amy Henley

Amy Henley

Meanwhile, in Times Square in New York City as the bell-ringing ceremony unfolded, UND and the Nistler College was represented as never before. That’s because when an institution rings the NASDAQ bell, it also gets the chance to appear on the NASDAQ Tower and NASDAQ Marquee – giant, iconic billboards that presented the University’s video, logo and message to all at the most famous crossroads in the world.

A 30-second UND video ran in rotation on the seven-story-tall NASDAQ Video Tower for the hour of UND’s closing bell. In addition, a Public Service Announcement message featuring the message, “Thank you to every Leader in Action for keeping us safe” and the UND and Nistler College logos also appeared.

“What a tremendous opportunity for the winner of our Red River Valley Business Plan Competition, and great exposure for UND and the Nistler College!” said Henley.

“Thanks to the sponsorship of Nodak Insurance Co. and the Larson Foundation, Pierson Painter was able to have the once-in-a-lifetime experience of ringing the closing bell at the NASDAQ Exchange. Our business plan competition lets students learn from industry leaders, while showcasing the tradition of excellence in entrepreneurship that makes North Dakota and UND leaders across the globe.”

The event was streamed live Wednesday, but the ceremony is still available for viewing at the NASDAQ website (remarks from NASDAQ and UND start at 4:00 in the video).

Pierson Painter, an Entrepreneurship and Marketing double major from Grand Forks, stands beside a company vehicle for his Dakota Lawn & Landscape business. Image courtesy of Pierson Painter.

UND flame shines bright

Painter is an Entrepreneurship and Marketing double major from Grand Forks. The NASDAQ Bell-Ringing Ceremony is part of the package of prizes he won for winning the 2020 Red River Valley Business Plan Competition. He also won $15,000 in cash and $25,000 in consulting support.

Painter’s business plan outlines the steps he’ll take to expand his landscaping business by making and selling liquid salt, a type of liquid de-icer. “Along with winning the cash prize and the consulting hours, which were awesome, I’m absolutely thrilled to be given the chance to ring the NASDAQ closing bell,” he said.

Robert Warren

Warren, the Nistler College instructor who organized and executed the Red River Valley Business Plan Competition, also helped secure the sponsorship of Nodak Insurance Co. – a NASDAQ-listed company – that earned Painter, the Nistler College and UND the chance to ring the closing bell.

“Taking part in the NASDAQ Bell Ringing Ceremony is a terrific opportunity for UND to let people know about the great things going on here, especially in the area of entrepreneurship,” Warren said.

“It also represents a tremendous recruiting opportunity for students interested in entrepreneurship, as it’s an honor offered to very few people and sets us apart from other schools.”