Wei-Shin Lai, M.D., founder and chief executive of Erie-based AcousticSheep, has been named Pennsylvania Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration.
The statewide winners were announced Monday. Winners from the 49 other states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands will compete May 1-2 in Washington, D.C., for the honor of National Small Business Person of the Year.
A native of Taiwan, Lai launched what would become AcousticSheep in 2007 when she and her husband, Crawford County native Jason Wolfe, created their first set of wearable headphones, designed to allow the user to fall asleep to the sound of soft music.
"I'd like to thank the Erie community for being so supportive of AcousticSheep," Lai said in a statement. "We look forward to continued rapid growth as we create a world of happier, healthier, well-rested people."
AcousticSheep, which has about 25 full and part-time employees, was honored as the top new business of the year during the 2015 Commitment to Erie Awards, sponsored by the Erie Times-News and GoErie.com.