Lego Vacuum Takes Top Spot in K-12 Student Series
TULSA, Okla. – The Tulsa StartUp Series named Lego Vacuum as the winner of the K-12 Student Live Pitch Series held March 23 at 36°North. Gabe Dougherty impressed the judges with his invention that allows for a quick and easy clean-up of small toy pieces scattered on the floor.
Gabe Dougherty of Lego Vacuum received a $2,500 cash prize to advance his business idea, a three-month membership to 36°North, a spot in the Venture Assessment Program at i2E and a mentor who will be available to meet with him weekly for at least three months. Lego Vacuum was one of six finalists in the K-12 Student Pitch Series to advance to the live pitch round. Other finalists were Broken B Feeders, Chef Club Box, Clip on Cleats, Community App, and Gone Fishin’.
“These young entrepreneurs have fantastic business ideas,” Autumn Worten, Tulsa StartUp Series Chair said. “Regardless of the age of the entrepreneur, the Tulsa StartUp Series provides resources to innovate and accelerate startups and the opportunity to test the startup idea, get feedback and network.”
The Tulsa StartUp Series, powered by Tulsa Community College and the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation focuses on delivering resources and mentoring opportunities to entrepreneurs.
The Tulsa StartUp Series features pitch competitions categorized by business segment and culminates with Demo Day during Global Entrepreneurship Week in November. The five Pitch Series winners get an automatic bid to compete at Demo Day, where the winner receives $15,000, a year-long membership to 36°North and a dedicated mentor.
Each Pitch Series focuses on a different business segment:
- Pitch Series 1: Tech/Apps (Submissions December 3-January 6)
- Pitch Series 2: K-12 Students (Submissions February 3-March 2)
- Pitch Series 3 Physical Products (Submissions April 6-May 4)
- Pitch Series 4: Food/Retail (Submissions June 1-July 6)
- Pitch Series 5: Wild Card (August 3-September 7)
TCC and LTFF have supported entrepreneurial innovation, growth and creativity since 2007 when the competition began as the Tulsa Entrepreneurial Spirit Award by former Mayor Kathy Taylor. The competition later adapted to the TCC StartUp Cup Powered by the Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation. This year, the competition reinvented itself to the Tulsa StartUp Series to meet the needs of local entrepreneurs. In total, Tulsa’s original startup competition has generated more than 2,300 full-time, part-time and contract jobs and a total economic impact for Tulsa of more than $57.7 million.
You can learn more about the Tulsa StartUp Series at www.tulsastartupseries.com, including instructions for submitting video pitches and competition rules.
About Tulsa Community College
TCC is one of the most comprehensive community colleges in the United States ranking 36th in the nation in the number of Associate Degrees it awards among nearly 1,100 community colleges nationwide. Serving nearly 28,000 students annually in credit courses, TCC is the state’s largest two-year college with four campuses in the Tulsa area. For more information on TCC, visit www.tulsacc.edu.
TCC Mission Statement
Tulsa Community College betters its community through the intellectual achievement, creative energy, and responsible citizenship of its students, faculty, and staff by their engagement in teaching, learning, and service opportunities that transform and enrich lives. Tulsa Community College commits to innovative, flexible, and affordable public higher education that responds to a dynamic global environment.
About Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation
The Lobeck Taylor Family Foundation (LTFF) was established in 1997 and focuses on initiatives that promote entrepreneurial thinking and spur economic development in Tulsa. Led by Elizabeth Frame Ellison, LTFF acts as a grant maker, innovator, and convener to support building a thriving entrepreneurial community. In 2014, Ellison founded Cultivate918 as a program of LTFF to encourage collaboration between entrepreneurs and the organizations that serve them.
Recent grant recipients include 36°N, Cultivate 918, Fab Lab, 501Technet, the Mine, Kitchen 66 and the Tulsa StartUp Series. For more information, visit www.lobecktaylor.com and connect with us on Twitter at @LobeckTaylorFF.