Finalists made their pitches Monday night at the annual Great Dames Remarkable Ideas competition at the Harry’s Savoy Grill banquet center.
Ideas covered a wide range of areas, but a common theme seemed to be finding solutions to tough social problems, often through the use technology.
Start ups making five minute pitches followed up by questions from judges were:
- Health Foods for Heatlhy Kids – A nonprofit seeking to improve nutrition and reduce childhood obesity through school gardening.
- Journey Beyond – A program for students in lower income areas that includes career preparation and course work related to world travel.
- Social Contract – A program aimed at helping nonprofits work together and break out of “silos.”
- Defendant Solutions – A service that aims to reduce disparities in sentencing of criminal defendants through a data base of sentences for varied offenses.
- Foster the Arts – Data driven services that provide music and other enrichment activities for foster children.
- Grant Blvd. A venture that seeks to make recycled garments, conserving resources and providing a variety of skills to former female offenders who have trouble finding work after being released from prison.
The winner of the competition that offers $25,000 in support and funds will be announced at a Great Days Event on Nov 5. The winner will be selected through a combination of votes taken at Monday’s event and the decision of judges.
Keynote speaker for the event was Jen Groover, who has been described by Success Magazine as a “One Woman Brand.”
Groover told presenters, judges and attendees at the event to not be afraid to ask for help and to realize that ventures will have supporters and those all-too-willing to spot potential problems.
The former national aerobics competitor also said failure is an option and can lead to greater success.
Groover, who started her career at a fitness center in the Trolley Square neighborhood in Wilmington, went on to mastermind the Butler Bag, a handbag with compartments
She is also a sought-after keynote speaker, trainer, author and serial entrepreneur.
The potential for women entrepreneurs is vast, with women-owned enterprises. accounting for only three percent of total wealth.
Click here for more information on Great Dames.