2022 Finals Event
March 9, 2022
University Center Ballrooms
The Monfort College of Business Entrepreneurial Challenge develops entrepreneurs’ knowledge and skillsets necessary to be competitive and successful in a rapidly changing business environment. This year we will be hosting Finals for our Open Division participants and our Collegiate Division participants.
Entrepreneurial Challenge Finals Livestream
Schedule of Events
- 9:00 a.m. Welcome and Introductions
- 9:15 a.m. Collegiate Division: Blue Path
- 9:33 a.m. Open Division: SARUS Lifting
- 9:56 a.m. Collegiate Division: Submission Nutrition
- 10:14 a.m. Open Division: RD Flows
- 10:34 a.m. Break
- 10:45 a.m. Collegiate Division: Your Pianist
- 11:03 a.m. Open Division: Horizon Verjus
- 11:44 a.m. Open Division: GelSana Theraputics
- 12:04 p.m. Break
- 12:13 p.m. Collegiate Division: Audition Advocates
- 12:31 p.m. Open Division: Slick Tools
- 12:54 p.m. Collegiate Division: Eclecticism
- 1:10 p.m. Judges Deliberation
- 2:15 p.m. Announcement
Come to our Finals Event in person at the University Center Ballrooms and UNC, below is information on how to navigate to our event!
We will have a Livestream of our event on a Zoom Webinar, below is the link to our livestream!
High School Program
We invite High Schools to bring their students to our Finals event where we have a program full of action packed learning experiences. This includes a tour around MCB, free lunch, and even a questionare for high school studets to learn more about the college experience.
Open Division Finalists
RD Flows is creating a marketplace to connect academic institutions with businesses looking to outsource their research and development. RD Flows looks to help standardize academic research and develop a pipeline connecting businesses in need of research equipment with underutilized university lab equipment. Standardized research pipelines let businesses leverage a network of university assets, conducting their research and ensuring consistency in results, regardless of a multitude of variables.
GelSana Therapeutics is addressing this need with its proprietary wound healing hydrogels that help heal tissue significantly faster and without the downsides of today’s dressings. Our strategy is to develop this superior line of wound dressings, introducing our first product under a medical device classification. Future generations of GelSana products can include drugs which are released over time, as these hydrogels have a demonstrated ability to continuously deliver therapeutics, and we have demonstrated in animal studies that diabetic wound healing time is cut by 1/2 with drug-laden hydrogels.
The Solar industry has developed rapidly in the last decade, but installers are still using generic construction tools for their projects. Slick Tools is developing specialty tools for solar professionals to provide them with the right tools for the trade. Currently, they are the industry leading expert in Animal Guard, focusing on residential solar, but are planning to expand into all three solar sectors (residential, utility, commercial) in the future.
Sarus develops software for crane companies and construction companies to streamline their lift planning process, saving them time and improving onsite safety through higher accuracy, improved communication, and access to better data.
Verjus (French for “green juice”) is the non-alcoholic, highly acidic juice of unripe wine grapes.Traditionally, verjus has been produced in small quantities by French vineyards and distributed locally. Verjus production has yet to gain a substantial foothold in the United States. However, with the growth of the farm-to-table movement in the kitchen and behind the bar, they believe the market is ready to embrace a locally made, eco-friendly ingredient.
Collegiate Division Finalists
Audition Advocates provides free college audition coaching services to students in the Denver-Metro area who are BIPOC students from underfunded areas or students from low income families. Our students would have sponsors who would help fund their professional coaching and mentoring sessions as well as help aid the fees of auditions and applications. Audition Advocates will help bridge that gap and promote the diversification and equitably of the theatre world.
Blue Path is a phone application that connects students with the campus police department when walking on campus. A student would open the Blue Path app and choose the on-campus location they were heading to. The app would connect the student to the university police to be monitored on their walk. The police would be able to track the student’s location and velocity changes on the app.
Eclecticism is truly an organization built by the community. Its aim is to provide a more sustainable and affordable alternative to traditional means of clothing in an attempt to reduce global waste. What sets Eclecticism apart from other clothing companies is each time an item is purchased, 50% of the money from all purchases go toward an organization that helps repair the environment.
We provide organic, all natural, nutrient-dense foods, snacks, and supplements designed to help fuel combat athletes. Currently, we offer 5 delicious flavors of overnight oatmeal. We will expand into nutrition bars, granola, trail mixes, cooking spices, and all natural super food based supplements.
The restrictions imposed by the current pandemic were huge. In music, for instance, they impacted rehearsals, lessons, recitals and many other kinds of music making. Therefore, this idea aims to provide piano lessons and piano accompaniment to music students through a subscription service.
Don is the veteran of several start-up companies. In 2004, he founded Secondary Interactive(SI)
to focus on automating the secondary marketing processes for the mortgage banking
industry. SI eventually become part of Optimal Blue, LLC, which is now part of Black Knight, which provides of a range of services to the mortgage and real estate industries. Optimal Blue remains the leading provider of secondary marketing automation for the mortgage industry. Don left Optimal Blue in 2020 and is now focusing on traveling and investing.
Don is a graduate of Northwestern University, and the University of Colorado School of Law. After law school, Don practiced water, land use and natural resource law for seven years before going into business. Don remains active in the water and natural resource programs at the University of Colorado School of Law and recently joined the advisory board of the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy and Environment.
Don has served on several boards and commissions in the City of Louisville culminating in his service as a council member from 2000 to 2008. He unsuccessfully ran for mayor of Louisville in 2019.
Don has been involved numerous non-profits including the YMCA of Northern Colorado,Via Mobility Solutions and the Imagine! Foundation where he served as president for the past two years and helped the organization raise of $800K both years. He is now a member of the governing board for Imagine! Colorado, the provider of services to individuals with intellectual disabilities in Boulder and Broomfield Counties.
CEO of Top-Line Xceleration
Jay is a seasoned executive with broad and diverse global experience in leading organizations. He currently is CEO of Top-Line Xceleration which works with companies to increase their top-line revenue and improve profitability. Jay is also co-founder of Ornavera, a Precision Agriculture company that assists growers to improve crop yield.
Jay’s career includes roles leading global sales and services organizations with private equity owned companies and over 30 years in executive roles with Intel’s IoT Group and Motorola both domestically and internationally. In addition, Jay is an adjunct professor at the University of Northern Colorado teaching undergraduate Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship, Fundamentals of Project Management and Management and Organizational Behavior.
Executive Director of SAGE
Executive Director of SAGE. SAGE connects teams of experienced advisors with early-stage startups. He has been a member of several startups himself in Fort Collins. He is a Senior Instructor in leadership and organization development programs for Duke’s Corp Ed program.
He is a board member for a Colorado Utility Company. Previously he served as a Director of R&D at the Hewlett-Packard Company. He also held positions at Hewlett-Packard as Marketing Manager, Business Unit Manager, Field Services District Manager and Systems Engineer. He served in the U.S. Air Force for 22 years as an Aeronautical Researcher, Assistant Professor at the U.S. Air Force Academy and an aircraft designer.
His education includes a B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy and an M.S from Stanford University. He received his MBA from Wright State University in Ohio.
Benjamin L. Snow
Director of Economic Health & Housing for the City of Greeley
Benjamin Snow serves as director of economic health and housing for the City of Greeley.
He returned to Colorado in 2018 after spending nine years as the president of the
Rapid City Economic Development Partnership, a public/private non-profit organization
in the Black Hills of
South Dakota. During his previous Colorado service, he was based in Metro Denver and served in several economic development leadership capacities, including executive director for the Parker Economic Development Council, president and CEO of the Parker Chamber of Commerce, and
business development manager for the Denver South Economic Development Partnership.
He has more than 24 years of experience working with leaders in both the public and private sectors. During his career, he has had the opportunity to travel throughout the United States and interface with multiple communities, both large and small, while completing many successful real estate and community development projects.
He received a bachelor’s in Business Administration (Real Estate Emphasis) from the
W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona and is
a Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) through the International Economic Development
Council. He is also active
with the International Council of Shopping Centers, Urban Land Institute, Economic Development Council of Colorado, Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, Upstate Colorado Economic Development, Greeley Downtown Development Authority, Greeley Area Chamber of Commerce, Greeley ACE (Achieving Community Excellence) Board, and many other educational,
civic and business organizations.
President & CEO KeHE Distributors
Brandon Barnholt has spent most of his career in the Food Retail and Supply-Chain business and has been at the helm of KeHE since 2008. During his tenure, KeHE has grown ten-fold from a regional specialty distributor with a single warehouse in Romeoville, IL, to a national food distribution leader with operations all over the U.S. and Canada.
Brandon received his bachelor’s degree in Finance and Economics from the University of Northern Colorado where he has since served on the Dean’s Counsel at the School of Business and the Board of Directors at the University’s Foundation.
Brandon serves at several Non-Profit organizations including his current role of Chairman of the CEO Forum and is active throughout the Food Industry including his Board service at Naturally Chicago, FMI, World Finer Foods and several early-stage companies.
Owner/Operator 477 Distilling and Greeley Hatchers House
Matt Estrin is owner and operator of 477 Distilling and the Greeley Hatchers House in historic Downtown Greeley. Matt opened 477 Distilling in June of 2018 sparking a passion for entrepreneurship opening his second business, the Greeley Hatchet House in November, 2020. The second Hatchet House location along with a craft cocktail bar is set to open in the spring of 2022 in Ft. Morgan Colorado. Matt has also spent the last two years growing the distribution of 477 working with multiple distributors around the state and growing the footprint of his brand. A second 477 tasting room is in the works. Matt is actively involved in the Greeley Area Chamber of Commerce, serving on the Leads Steering committee and the Greeley Young Professionals board. Additionally in 2020, Matt was awarded the 40 under 40 award from BizWest.
On a personal level, Matt has been married since 2005 to his wife Trista and they have two daughters, Samantha and Riley with their Golden Doodle Whiskey. Matt is also actively involved in Generations church in Greeley.
Entrepreneurial Challenge Director
Dallas Everhart’s career is a blend of consulting, business owner, local government and higher education with positions in leadership, management, and finance.
Entrepreneurial Student Manager
Halaki Gionet is a student at the UNC majoring in Business Finance. This is her second year managing the Entrepreneurial Challenge but her third year being involved with the event. Her goal is to use the experience she has gained with the eChallenge and her knowledge of finance to help nurture the small business community in Hawaii, where she is from.
Entrepreneurial Challenge Winner
Emmy Scott is a graduate of UNC who competed in the 2019 & 2020 Entrepreneurial Challenge. In 2020 Emmy won first place for the Collegiate Division with her business idea My Peace.