Elevating Impact Summit 2017 Pitch Fest

Every year, five social entrepreneurs present rapid pitches about their ventures to a panel of impact investors and an audience of 400 supporters. The audience winner is selected by live audience vote, and takes home a $1500 prize.

Finalists are all at early stages of launching a social enterprise concept or existing venture, either for-profit, nonprofit or hybrid, that uses business tools to address a major social or environmental problem. 


  • Catalyst Law Institute provides affordable legal services to lower-income individuals and small enterprises by matching clients with Catalyst Fellows, who provide sliding-scale legal services and free community education.
  • CINCH helps preserve parks and trails with a trash-collecting device made from ocean-bound plastics, an environmental action campaign, and a philanthropy model to support environmental nonprofits.
  • GroundUp PDX is a nut butter company that creates a web of socially conscious companies and mentors in Portland to employ and work alongside recently houseless women as they transition to economic stability.
  • Northwest College of the Liberal Arts is a new type of school, this two-year commuter college leverages data and extensive research on learning communities to make an affordable experience, for a diverse student body, that cultivates community leaders.  
  • JikoPower presents a hand-held thermoelectric generator that converts excess heat from any cookstove or fire into usable power. The tiny generator can power a phone, LED, emergency radio, and more.