Energy District Awarded 2011 Biz Booster Challenge Grant
The Winneshiek Energy District was one of four businesses to receive funding from the 2011 Winneshiek County Development, Inc. Biz Booster Challenge. Below is an excerpt from the Winneshiek County Development, Inc May 24th mailing:
Biz Booster awards grants to four Winneshiek entities
A significant increase in the quality of business plans highlights the annual Winneshiek County Development, Inc. Biz Booster Challenge, with four winners rising to the top of the list for the seven-member judging panel.
Winners include an acupuncture and Chinese medicine business by Brenda Harris of Decorah, The Clay Studio by Rachelle Reis Branum of Decorah, Pinter Gardens and Pumpkins of rural Decorah and the Winneshiek Energy District.
“This is the 4th year of the Biz Booster competition and the quality of the entries has never been better,” said Judging Team member Rich Leake, a professor of management at Luther College. “It is very gratifying to see business proposals from agriculture to tourism, from professional services to the arts. The diversity of the economy in Northeast Iowa is amazing.”
Biz Booster Challenge, which provides up to $12,000 in grant money to winners of the business-plan competition, was begun by Winneshiek County Development, Inc. to help cultivate local economic development by both inspiring and financially supporting local entrepreneurs.
In addition to submitting a detailed business plan, selected participants are asked to make an oral presentation before the seven-member judging panel.
“What a tremendous year to read and learn about all of the expansions and new businesses,” said Judging Team chair Nina Taylor. “Winneshiek County truly has many new options to look forward to as all of these businesses mature.”
Taylor added that just participating in Biz Booster is beneficial to businesses, whether they are selected as grant recipients or not. “The process of writing a business plan helps to provide a road map to success, and the plans submitted provide proof that they are all on the right path. We wish them all much success as they continue to pursue their dreams.”