The InnovateHER Challenge was kicked off in 2015 by the U. S. Small Business Administration to spotlight innovative entrepreneurs from across the country. In 2016, nearly 200 local competitions were held to select winning business plans to be submitted to the SBA. more than 3,000 entrepreneurs were engaged throughout the process.
The Challenge requires participants to have a product or service with a measurable impact on the lives of women and families, have the potential for commercialization, and fill a need in the marketplace.
“SBA recognizes that over the past two decades, women entrepreneurs have been critical to growing businesses and creating jobs, whether it’s in in cutting-edge fields like precision medicine or cybersecurity or through advances in agriculture or manufacturing,” shared the SBA’s Office of Women’s Business Ownership.
The 2017 Louisiana InnovateHER Challenge was held entirely online and required participated to submit their business plan and a pitch video virtually.
Lisa McKenzie, founder of You Night Empowering Events, was recently announced the winner of the Louisiana InnovateHER Challenge. The program addresses the emotional needs of women who have had cancer and offers a unique alternative to cancer support groups.
“The most special thing about You Night is that it teaches cancer survivors how to overcome the physical and psychological challenges of cancer treatment through teamwork, coaching, and strong interpersonal support from a network of other survivors,” shared the LA New Product Development Team, a host of the Challenge along with Cohab, Susla University and Female Entrepreneurs of The Movement, Inc.