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Chicago Neighborhood Award showcases small business innovation in Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods through Chicago Innovation Awards and Wintrust sponsored initiative

Posted: July 6 2016 by Paul Kitti - Press

Chicago—July 5, 2016—The Chicago Innovation Awards, the foremost recognition of new products and services in the Chicago region, announces the “Chicago Neighborhood Award” to celebrate small businesses from Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods that focus on innovation to provide value to their local communities.

“Chicago is a city of neighborhoods, and yet, not every neighborhood is plugged into the growing entrepreneurial movement happening in our city,” says Tom Kuczmarski, Co-Founder of the Chicago Innovation Awards. “The goal of this new award is to promote the importance of inclusivity in Chicago and to recognize our city’s often over-looked, under-the-radar companies and organizations that are harnessing innovation to stimulate economic activity in their local communities.”

Sponsoring this new award is Wintrust, a long-time supporter of the Chicago Innovation Awards. “We are Chicago’s community bank. As such, we are extremely excited to partner with the Chicago Innovation Awards on this new Neighborhood Award program,” says Ed Wehmer, CEO of Wintrust.

Eligible companies and organizations are encouraged to self-nominate, with no associated fee. The application deadline is August 15. To submit a nomination, visit Nominees can be for-profit or not-for-profit and must show that their new products and services have addressed an unmet needed, created new value, are differentiated from competition and have demonstrated measurable impact in the communities they serve.

Ten Finalists will each receive a $2,500 scholarship to attend “The Practical Innovator,” a day-long executive education course at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management. Three winners will be celebrated to 1,500 people at the 15th annual Chicago Innovation Awards on October 25th, invited to ring the Nasdaq Bell, meet with the Mayor, Governor, Cook County President, and receive widespread media recognition.

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