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Boise Entrepreneur Week Recap: $105k awarded to Venture College participants

Boise State alum Allison Corona, founder of Chicana Foods won the 2021 Impact Award during Boise Entrepreneur Week. Angie Smith Photography

Friday, Oct. 22, wrapped up an exciting Boise Entrepreneur Week. The largest amount in cash prizes – $105,000 of the $140,000 awarded –  went to current and past Venture College program participants. This included participants from the Venture College Incubator, the Idaho Entrepreneur Challenge, Hacking for Homebuilding, and the Cybersecurity Entrepreneur Challenge.

Winner Highlights

Cargo Made Ez
Founded by Adam Stock
Boise Entrepreneur Week pitch competition winner

Stock won $25,000 in non-dilutive prize money and automatically qualified to participate in the third season finals of 2 Minute Drill.

Cargo Made Ez designs and builds motorized tiedown strap systems for professionals with flatbed and small trucks, by using high torque motors and Kevlar straps.

Stock is studying mechanical engineering at Brigham Young University-Idaho, and participated in the Spring 2021 Venture College Incubator. He won the 2021 Idaho Entrepreneur Challenge, which secured his spot in this year’s BEW Pitch Competition.

Stock said he has always dreamed of becoming a mechanical engineer and entrepreneur, with the goal of “building something to help make people’s lives better, and even more so, as a business owner, to hire, influence, and give back to the community.”

“Having won the IEC competition was a dream come true . . . the money from the competition was great and a blessing, but almost more valuable were the classes the Venture College offered. I knew I had a good idea but I had no idea how to take it to market. The Venture College helped me take that idea from my head to paper, to product, to production . . . I’m so grateful for the Venture College, IEC, BEW, and the Boise community for all of their help, coaching, and encouragement to have turned my childhood dream into a reality,” Stock said.

Founded by Jenny Anderson
Tied for runner-up in the BEW pitch competition

Anderson is a current Venture College Incubator participant and Boise State University student studying business administration, management, and operations.

Maggie is an organization focused on helping women and their families become financially secure by introducing them to the field of tech sales.

Chicana Foods
Founded by Allison Corona
Trailmix Pitch Competition Impact Award Winner

Corona, founder of Chicana Foods, is a Boise State alum who double majored in Spanish language and literature and fine arts with a photography emphasis. Corona completed the Fall 2020 Venture College Incubator.

Chicana Foods’ salsa macha is typical of the Veracruz and Oaxaca Mexican states with African influences. Chicana Foods’ recipe was developed by Corona’s aunt in Mexico.

Cybersecurity Entrepreneur Challenge
Presented in partnership by Micron and Boise State University

TAC Security
First Place: $12,000
Cameron White (College of Western Idaho), Alexander Mitchell (College of Western Idaho) + Tatum Jones (Boise State)

TAC Security won first place after pitching their platform that blends physical security with cybersecurity tools into a real-time threat management system.

White, Mitchell, and Jones met just a little over a week before the final pitch competition. In a short amount of time, they found a solution to a cybersecurity challenge critical to industry growth, formed their solution into a venture, and pitched their idea to win the Cybersecurity Entrepreneur Challenge.

Cyber Shield Elite
First Runner-Up: $8,000
Sara Hoyt, Robert E. Wiley Jr., Dallin Baird + Elizabeth Kahn (Boise State)

Tied for Second Runner-Up: $5,000
Devonne Busoy + Robert Kinney (Boise State)

Tied for Second Runner-Up: $5,000
Landon Barney (University of Idaho), Jesse Rasaka (University of Idaho) + Gabriel Taylor (Brigham Young University-Idaho)

Hacking for Homebuilding
Public Track

Flashpoint Building Systems
First Place: $10,000
Nick Stoppello + Pat Churchman

Stoppello and Churchman founded Flashpoint Building Systems to streamline building. Flashpoint Building Systems combines plan drawings from multiple disciplines and makes them easily available on a real-world scale. Using their patent-pending process, Stoppello and Churchman laser etch building information directly onto the subfloor of your building, giving you everything you need to skip the layout process and begin vertical construction the same day.

Runner-Up: $7,000
Gabriel Blanchet, Paul Hlatky, James Spearing, Kati Gullick + Lucas Jaramillo

CrewNotes by Beta Canon
Second Runner-Up: $3,000
Dom Ramirez, Karen Kohtz, Dustin Jones + Michelle Helderman

Student Track

First Place: $10,000
Tais Mitchell, Jason Talford, Mallory Buscemi, Joseph Sedillo + Andrew Miller (University of Idaho)

In two short weeks, VandalEyes developed a multi-pronged solution to theft and vandalization of equipment trailers. VandalEyes’ solution includes a security kit installation, monitoring app, and centralized system designed for trailers with GPS and cellular monitoring capabilities.

Runner-Up: $7,000
Isaiah Grover (Boise State)

NeighborWood Surplus
Second Runner-Up: $3,000
Landon Barney + Jesse Rasaka (University of Idaho)