18 February 2018
Last week, I served as a final round judge for the Entrepreneurs Organization (EO) Global Student Entrepreneur Awards (GSEA) for the United States semi-finals. For those of you not familiar with EO, it’s a global peer-to-peer learning network for entrepreneurs. Its 12,000 members are spread across 170 chapters in 53 countries. The average member owns a company doing about $5M in annual revenue. I was a long-time member of the Dallas chapter. In 2007, I launched the Oklahoma chapter. It was while serving as EO Oklahoma’s chapter president that RevTech Ventures was born.
I was invited to serve as a judge by RevTech Ventures mentor, Adrienne Palmer, who spent years serving on EO’s global board. It was a thrill to be involved again and I got to catch up with several long-time members. The GSEA competition for the USA finalists was held at the Communities Foundation here in Dallas. The winner of this competition will travel to Toronto later this year to compete with the winners from the other 52 countries where EO has chapters.
There were 5 finalists selected from the semi-final rounds. I’m pleased to report that entrepreneurship is in good hands for the next generation because these were all big ideas! The entrepreneurial ideas ranged from eliminating suicide to protecting against date rape to ending world hunger. The winner was Danya Sherman, who had the unique idea of a cocktail napkin that could be discreetly used to test for the presence of date rape drugs. Hopefully, Danya will represent the USA well at the global competition and will take her idea to market!