GROW Local South Texas Emerges as Local Winner of CBBIC InnovateHER Pitch Contest

Published: June 08, 2017

GROW Local South Texas Emerges as Local Winner of CBBIC InnovateHER Pitch Contest

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – The Coastal Bend Business Innovation Center (CBBIC) at Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi is pleased to announce GROW Local South Texas as the winner of the local InnovateHER Challenge. The local competition, which was the first phase of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) national challenge, began with a call for submissions. Then a pitch contest was held for three of the local finalists chosen by a panel of judges selected from regional business experts.

“Winning this competition is honestly overwhelming,” said Aislynn Campbell, Executive Director of GROW Local South Texas. “The idea of commercialization for a non-profit is a new thing in the last 10 to 20 years and I think the direction we’re moving in is really great.”

The aim of the InnovateHER Challenge is to amplify products or services that will have a measurable impact on the lives of women and families, while having the potential for commercialization and filling a need in the marketplace. As the winner of the local contest, GROW Local South Texas will now move to the semi-final round where all local competition winners will be judged by the SBA for the chance to advance to the national competition.

“The winner of the InnovateHER competition, GROW Local South Texas, presented a business model that benefits the health of women and families throughout The Coastal Bend Region by providing consistent availability to fresh and healthy produces at a reasonable price,” said Russell Franques, Associate Director of Client Relations at the Business Innovation Center. “The Center is honored to have hosted such a high impact event in conjunction with our SBA partners.”

GROW Local South Texas is a non-profit founded in 2013 that offers fresh, locally grown produce and all natural gardening and home food preparation techniques for families in the Coastal Bend. The group has garnered a reputation as the leader of the local food movement in Corpus Christi and the Coastal Bend. Its mission is to cultivate a healthy community by growing the local food system and improving access to nutritious, affordable foods.

“Everything we do is about supporting families, and supporting income in rural and small town families,” said Campbell. “We not only help these families financially, but we have also helped create a community aspect where we have begun to become neighbors who support and help each other.”

The InnovateHER Challenge was created by the SBA in 2015 as a way to increase the number of women entrepreneurs in the U.S. The local challenge is part of a collaboration between Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and the SBA.