Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation welcomed 350 entrepreneurs, business leaders, elected officials, media, and community members for the annual Propeller Pop event, a celebration of the graduating Accelerator fellows and the supporters who helped the 15 ventures.
Propeller celebrated two supporters of social innovation in New Orleans with the inaugural Impact Champion Awards. Both Kevin Wilkins and Mike Eckert were recognized for their significant volunteer contributions, dedication, expertise, and commitment to the success of Propeller’s Accelerator programs.
“The success of our Accelerator programs and our entrepreneurs is reliant on mentors like Kevin and Mike,” says Propeller Executive Director Andrea Chen. “Their guidance drives our programs and the solutions of our entrepreneurs solutions forward.”
More about each award recipient is below:
Kevin Wilkins is Propeller’s Board Treasurer and served this year as the Lead Mentor for the Propeller Social Venture Accelerator Program, offering up many hours of support and 25 years of expertise in corporate and entrepreneurial ventures to each member of this year’s graduating Accelerator class. He is the founder of Trepwise llc, a New Orleans based advisory firm with the vision of driving entrepreneurial success in New Orleans.
Mike Eckert spearheaded the Water Challenge pilot Accelerator program for the 2014-2015 programmatic year, volunteering his time and networks to Propeller’s 13 water entrepreneurs. Under his leadership, Propeller water companies made tremendous progress, from securing contracts to permanently protect over 1300 acres of Louisiana wetlands, to contracts to retain 500,000 gallons of stormwater per year. Mike Eckert is the former President and CEO The Weather Channel, former Chairman and CEO of Pathfire, and currently serves as the Chairman of the NO/LA Angel Network.