Whitman Voices

Introduction

Orange Tank Business Pitch Competition Doles out $21,000 in Cash to Promising New Ventures

Orange Tank Business Pitch Competition Doles out $21,000 in Cash to Promising New Ventures

On Oct. 19, 2018, the Whitman School hosted the fourth annual Orange Tank business pitch competition. Student and alumni entrepreneurs pitched their ventures to a panel of accomplished judges in hopes of receiving valuable feedback and winning a cash prize to further advance their venture. Thanks to the generous support of Mark ’83 and Judi ’84 (VPA) Morris, Keith Lippert ’78 and Mark Selden ’95, $21,000 in cash was awarded.

The first-place prize in the alumni category with a $7,500 cash prize went to Robinson Torres ’18 for FEFA, a startup education company. Second place and $2,000 in the alumni category went to Scaled Buy, an AI-powered, modern procurement portal for commercial clients that cuts costs by applying economies of scale. Finalist, a talent network that matches in-house recruiters with vetted candidates, received third place and $1,000.

In the student category, Stephen Bolen ’18, Jonathan Gregory ’19 and Isaac Yates ’18 of the Whitman School’s online MBA program won the first-place prize of $7,500. Their product is Latchkey, a smart home device that provides an easy and automatic way for caregivers to be informed when a child arrives home alone. Fitpet, a company focusing on smart, pet-wearable auxiliary system products, took home a second-place prize of $2,000, while The Artemis Wand, an extension apparatus for the disabled and infirm, won the third-place cash prize of $1,000.

Judges included Jake Duneier ’10, Lisa Fontenelli ’86 (WHIT/NEW), Michael Gursha ’10 (WHIT/NEW), Camellia Loojune ’13 and Mark Selden ’95. The master of ceremony was Mike Smith ’12, ’13 M.S.

Kerri Howell

Kerri is director of communications and media relations for the Whitman School. She is responsible for managing all internal and external communications with students, faculty, staff, alumni, members of the business community and other key stakeholders.After receiving her B.A. from State University of New York at Geneseo, she went on to earn her M.S. in communications management from Syracuse’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, where she has served as an adjunct professor in the public relations department since 2004.