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Pipeline Announces Judges for Innovator of the Year

Pipeline Announces Judges for Innovator of the Year


Entrepreneurial experts from as far as Northern Ireland will come to Kansas City as judges for Pipeline’s Innovator of the Year award.

Pipeline fellows compete for the program’s top award, which will be given at The Innovators program Jan. 25. The companies are judged on performance during the fellowship year, scores from business plans refined through the program and presentations given during the pitch competition Jan. 25 at Alamo Draft House in downtown Kansas City.

Two panels of judges will collaborate on the final scores.

Pitch judges

  • Sonya Kerr, Catalyst Inc., Belfast, Northern Ireland
  • Julie Lenzer, UM Ventures, College Park, Md.
  • Meredith Manning, MSM LLC, Chicago
  • Yelena Shkolnik, Jump Capital, Chicago

Business/operating plan judges

  • Craig Buerstatte, U.S. Department of Commerce/EDA, Washington, D.C.
  • Wendy Lea, Cintrifuse, Cincinnati
  • Tom Parkinson, IllinoisVENTURES, Champaign-Urbana, Ill.
  • Paul Wolf, Deer Creek Holdings, Los Angeles

“It’s an honor to showcase our 2017 Pipeline fellows, along with our longtime entrepreneur members, with this tremendous panel of judges,” Pipeline CEO Joni Cobb said. “These judges once again bring expertise, energy and new connections for our entire Pipeline membership.”

Other awards will be distributed at the gala, including the Entrepreneurial Leadership Award and member awards. Pipeline named the finalists for its member awards.

Member inspiration

  • Kim Gandy, Play-It Health, Kansas City
  • Brian Handrigan, Traaqr, St.Louis
  • Jeff Hargroves, ProPharma Group, Kansas City
  • Aaron McKee, Purple Wave, Manhattan, Kan.
  • Dusty Reynolds, RaceNote, Omaha

Member growth

  • Jen Amis, Encounter Telehealth, Omaha
  • Alfred Botchway, Xenometrics, Kansas City
  • Tim Donnelly, SeniorVu, Kansas City
  • Paul Jarrett, Bulu Box, Lincoln
  • Blake Lawrence, opendorse, Lincoln

The Innovators gala will be Jan. 25 at Arvest Bank Theatre at The Midland in downtown Kansas City. The event follows the daytime pitch competition and brings together entrepreneurs, investors and advisers.

Pipeline is a fellowship program for entrepreneurs in the Midwest. The accelerator provides mentorship to help companies grow and takes zero equity.

Categories: News Updates


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