Pitch Competition

The 2017 Net Impact Pitch Competition program supported members in developing original ideas, and celebrated and showcased the best ones.

It had several components:

  • Prep to Pitch workshops: In Prep To Pitch workshops, chapters used a step-by-step Prep To Pitch toolkit to host a workshop where members worked in small groups to understand pressing issues, imagine solutions, and test their viability and impact
  • Expert feedback: Over the summer, folks who submitted their ideas received feedback from experts and staff, then had a chance to refine their concepts and resubmit
  • Pitch Competition at NI17: The teams with the best ideas were then selected to pitch live in front of an audience of over 150 and a panel of 4 judges at the 2017 Net Impact conference for the chance to win cash prizes and a trip to Vegas

Expert Feedback Providers

  • Ron Gonen, Founder, Closed Loop Fund
  • Meika Hollender, Co-Founder + Co-CEO, Sustain Natural
  • Joe Whinney, Founder + CEO, Theo Chocolate
  • Daniel Lubetzky, Founder + CEO, Kind Bar


  • Nikishka Iyengar, Founder and CEO, The Guild
  • Joanne Sonenshine, Founder and CEO, Connective Impact
  • Chris Markl, Director of Social Entrepreneurship, Georgia State University
  • Jennifer Bonnett, Founder and Executive Director, StartupChicks

Grand Prize Winner

  • Bridget, Asha Lannin, USC Marshall School of Business: Bridget is a social enterprise that cultivates and capacitates actionable career curiosity in the minds of inner-city LA girls, while engaging socially minded corporations. The product of our bridge-building is a highly sharable impact video.

Audience Choice Winner

  • Seed Planter Accelerator, Linh Le Thi Ngoc, Babson College: Seed Planter provides social entrepreneurs intensive six-month business training + mentorship + early stage funding + the access to advisors, partners, impact investors globally.


  • PhoenixFarms, Bryan Marquez, Central Texas College: PheonixFarms uses technologies and practices that are currently available, but are only used by individuals or small businesses. The idea is to reuse abandoned or unused building in metropolitan areas to open hydroponic farms.
  • Mycro Change, Mubin Punjwani, University of Chicago: MycroChange is a social impact savings platform that allows users to incrementally invest in nonprofit projects that align with their favorite causes, such as a local arts center, or a social-impact food kitchen that hires ex-convicts to reduce the recidivism.
  • WeBrew, Bridget Gillmore, Saint Joseph's University: WeBrew is a cooperative, entrepreneurial innovation brewing hub. We implement holistic closed loop systems for sustainable ingredient sourcing, energy usage, and resources.
  • Foldy, Ari Davis, Rollins College Crummer Graduate School of Business: Foldy is a collapsible, light, reusable, durable, dishwasher-safe container produced with natural/recycled materials to be purchased in bulk by restaurants and offered at a small cost to customers for transport of takeout or leftover food.


Thank you to all who participated in the program and competition! To join one of our amazing other programs, please visit https://www.netimpact.org/leadchange. In particular, Drawdown INNOVATE is a similar program.