Springboard Ideas Challenge Awards Dinner

by   |  04.14.11  |  COBA Events, City of Abilene, Current Students, Entrepreneurship, Griggs Center, Special Speakers, Springboard

Our fourth annual Springboard Ideas Challenge Awards Dinner was another successful, educational and fun event here on campus. As guests gathered in Hunter Welcome Center, they could mingle through the many displays of the Ideas Challenge finalists, learning more about their business plans and ideas. And in some cases, even tasting the finalists’ business idea. 

During the meal, we heard more about the Griggs Center for Entrepreneurship and Philanthropy from the Director of the Center, Dr. Jim Litton, as well as COBA dean, Dr. Rick Lytle.

Dr. Rick Lytle discussing the Griggs Center

Special guests, Dr. and Mrs. Jack Griggs

To be sure, the point of the awards dinner is to announce the winners of the small business plan competition. But the focus of the entire event and evening is to encourage entrepreneurship – to encourage the entrepreneurs, as well as to encourage the wider community that will support these businesses. To speak further about the topic of entrepreneurship and community, ACU and the College of Business Administration was thrilled to bring in Jessica Jackley, co-founder of KIVA.org and most recently, founder of  ProFounder.com.

Special Guest Speaker Jessica Jackley

Jackley shared her experiences in South Africa that lead her to start KIVA

Jackley’s engaging, down-to-earth, completely authentic style had the audience laughing at different times and moved to tears at others. Here’s a nice recap of what she shared from the Abilene Reporter-News.

Audience members had the opportunity to text Jackley questions at the conclusion of her talk

After Jackley shared about her experiences, Dr. Litton announced the winners of the mini-business plan competition. Here is the breakdown of the winners in each catagory:

Community Post-Revenue

Honorable Mention ($1000 cash prize):

  • Enchilada Express – Chris Norton, www.enchiladaexpress.com
  • Urban Male Hair and Grooming – Lindsey Soria, http://urbanmalesalon.com
  • Dream Spectrum Design – Charles Caddell, www.dreamspectrum.com

2nd Place ($3000 cash prize):

  • Advantage Cubed – Coty Woolf

1st Place ($7500 cash prize):

  • Indivijual Custom Eyeware – Randy Barnett, www.indivijual.com

Community Pre-Revenue

Honorable Mention ($1000 cash prize):

  • Cordell’s – Jason Beard, Joy Beard
  • XYZ Eyewear – Dr. Troy Carter, Tyler Lewis

2nd Place ($3000 cash prize):

  • Knox City Hometown Variety – Sheri Baty, Ezekial Duke, Marla Hawkins, Steve Pepper

1st Place ($7500 cash prize):

  • Landman.IO – Chad Hutchins

Students

Honorable Mention ($1000 cash prize):

  • Walk Thru – Joshua Archer, Chase Cobern, Justin Durko
  • Super TwinBEAR – David Galaz, Chen Gong, Patrick Yan
  • Droppage.com – Chas Quisenberry
  • The Cellular Trap – Tyler Nolan, John Stevens, Derek Zimmerman

2nd place ($3000 cash prize):

  • iMedical Online – Clayton Selby, Seth Thomas

1st place ($7500 cash prize):

  • ScholarSphere – Asa Kusuma, Tim Johnston

Social Entrepreneurship Award ($2500 cash prize):

  • Suffer Not the Children – Christina Batten, Kevin Batten

Most Fundable Award ($7500 cash prize):

  • Landman.IO – Chad Hutchins

Congratulations to all of our winners! In addition to the cash prizes, winners will also have the opportunity to receive in-kind prizes like office space, equipment and furniture. The cash and in-kind prizes were provided by the following sponsors:

Bronze Sponsors

  • ACU Campus Bookstore
  • Morris&Mitchell
  • Rosas Cafe
  • Shelton Family Foundation
  • Women for ACU

Silver Sponsors

  • Abilene Reporter News
  • American State Bank
  • First Financial Bank
  • Genesis Network Solutions
  • McMurry University
  • Raindance Capital
  • Senter, Realtors

Gold Sponsors

  • Development Corporation of Abilene
  • Dian Graves Owen Foundation
  • Dodge Jones Foundation
  • Jack and Ann Griggs
  • Texas Tech Small Business Development Center
  • Kenny and Sharon Wilson

Platinum Sponsors

  • ACU’s College of Business Administration
  • Bixby Enterprises and Mark Horn Enterprises

And special Program Partner, Workforce Solutions of West Central Texas.

We are grateful for the community of support we received in order to host this competition and awards dinner. Our events would not have been possible without the partnership of our sponsors, judges, contestants, COBA faculty, ACU staff and specifically, Dr. Jim Litton. If you are interested in learning more about our entrepreneurship program in COBA or how you can participate in next year’s Ideas Challenge, please email us at  coba@acu.edu.