Spirit Awards Finalists Pitch to Judges

SPIRITED DREAMS: Joan Holopoff pitches her product called “HAIL no! Car Covers.” She plans to market a portable vehicular hail cover in an assortment of sizes to enable vehicle owners to quickly protect their auto investments in the event of a hail storm.

What’s the difference between a good startup and a great one? The perfect pitch. The top 25 entrepreneurs in the SpiritBank/Tulsa Community College Entrepreneurial Spirit Award showed and told competition judges why they deserve the top prize of $30,000 during the first pitching round July 6 and July 7 at the offices of SpiritBank.

Each finalist had seven minutes to pitch their business plan and then respond to Q-and-A from the panel of judges. Judges then discussed the pitches and selected 12 finalists to advance to the semi-final presentation round Sept. 15. Along the way, participants will work with local business professionals to refine and improve their business plans and pitching techniques.

The top winners of the SpiritBank/Tulsa Community College Entrepreneurial Spirit Award will be announced at an awards ceremony and celebration Tuesday, Nov. 15 at TCC’s Center for Creativity in downtown Tulsa during Global Entrepreneurship Week. The first place winner will receive $30,000, second place, $5,000 and third place, $2,500, provided by SpiritBank.

Past Spirit Award winners include Cal-Tech, , producer of Sulfabate, a natural gas refining product; Real Time Rehab, a video-based physical therapy program; Grocio.com, a comparison-shopping search engine for groceries; and SeekingSitters, a baby sitter referral service. Both Grocio and SeekingSitters expanded into markets throughout the U.S. after their Spirit Award wins.

For more information about the Spirit Award and resource information, visit www.tulsaspiritaward.com

Updated 07-19-2011

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