Event Page

October 19, 2023

Doors Open & Networking

Polsky Exchange North, 1452 E 53rd St. Chicago, IL 60615


Opening Introduction

Beth Kregor, IJ Clinic on Entrepreneurship Director



To be announced in September


Pitch Competition

Will be provided once finalists are announced in September 2023!


Voting & Reception

Cast your vote for your favorite pitches!


Winners Announced!

2022’s Judges and Keynote Speaker

LaForce Baker


Recognized in Forbes, Success Magazine & Crain’s Chicago Business. LaForce is currently Vice President of Community Impact at World Business Chicago. There he oversees all economic development for the South and West sides of Chicago— managing $1.4 billion dollars in investment & a smart/passionate team. Founder of Moon Meals.

Justin Douglas


Currently the Assistant Director of the Edwardson Social Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Chicago–Booth School of Business (Rustandy Center). He works with student entrepreneurs across UChicago’s campus to develop social impact-based ventures, secure funding, and find mentors and other avenues for support.

Brooke Fallon


As Vice President at Trust Ventures, Brooke works with portfolio companies to open markets, create a regulatory strategy, advise on hiring, build industry coalitions, and develop media strategies to help founders tell their story. Before joining Trust Ventures, Brooke planned the very first South Side Pitch

Richard Jones


Currently the Supplier Diversity Business Manager with United Airlines, where Richard hears business pitches everyday and engages businesses with United Airlines across the country.

Dominique Jones

Keynote Speaker

The owner of D. Jones Construction and 3rd place winner in the 2021 South Side Pitch. Knowing she had so much more to offer the industry but just needed the opportunity to really showcase her talents, she saw a way by creating her own path and started D. Jones Construction. Not only has this granted her the opportunities she always knew were there, but it has granted those who look like her the opportunity to join our team and this forever growing industry. D. Jones Construction is transforming once forgotten about communities by partnering with non-profit organizations and minority small business owners to build out their spaces and renovate distress homes. Restoring hazardous properties on the South Side of Chicago gives us the opportunity to shine light on something that was once forgotten about.

Thank You to Last Year’s Coaches!

Lauren Amos

Director of Small Business Development at the Urban Juncture Foundation

Katrina Roddy

Director of Boxville & Entrepreneurial Coach

Amiel Harper

Founder of Morpheus Consultancy, LLC

Christopher Schneider

Assistant Director for Programs & Partnerships, Rustandy Center for Social Sector Innovation

Sharon McDade

Strategy Expert & nextONE Program Director for Chicago Urban League 2021

Frank Cook

MBA Candidate at U Chicago Booth School of Business

Anna Jacobs

Cofounder & CEO of Inclusive+

Diana Shaw

Advisor at A’goVes