Columbia, SC (PressExposure) November 27, 2012 -- A sold-out crowd of over 500 Midlands leaders and innovators chose Public Works of HeART to win the $5000 Ideas Contest at the Ignite! event, held at the Carolina Coliseum on Wednesday, November 14, 2012. EngenuitySC also presented the 2012 Ignite! Vision Award to Larry Wilson, EngenuitySC Executive Committee member and Venture Partner at FirstMark Capital.
Ignite! is the organization's annual celebration of entrepreneurship and innovation in the Midlands, bringing together new media, technology and business leaders, innovators, students and entrepreneurs to celebrate forward-thinking economic development in the Midlands.
Guests enjoyed an evening of 400-second talks by local innovators, as well as open bar, cuisine by Scott Hall Catering & Event Design, and live, text message-based voting to choose which Ideas Contest finalist would take home the $5000 check from Wells Fargo. Will Bryan's winning pitch for Public Works of HeART demonstrated how crowdfunding would pay for large, public art murals around Columbia, through a sustainable business model.
"Our mission at Public Works of HeART is to use the beauty of public art to improve lives and to contribute to the growing creative economy here in the Midlands," says founder Will Bryan. "The Ignite! prize money will help us move closer to our goal of installing our first crowdfunded mural in downtown Columbia, SC."
The other two finalists for the Ignite! Ideas Contest prize were local companies Voterheads and Koala Bottle. A healthy crowd turned out for post-event networking at the official Ignite! afterparty at Social Bar & Lounge, where finalists, speakers, and community leaders exchanged ideas over signature Ignite! cocktails.
Each of these speakers gave a dynamic, 400-second presentation at the 2012 Ignite! event:
Jill Davis, Vice President of Corporate Planning & Strategic Services for BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina
Ben Rex, CEO, Cyberwoven
Dr. MVS "Chandra" Chandrashekhar, Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering, USC College of Engineering & Computing
Brendan Lee and Chris Thibault, Founders, 52Apps
Preach Jacobs, Cola-Con Organizer, Musician, Photographer, and Journalist Michael T. Roth, Former USC College World Series Champion Pitcher, Minor League Baseball Player for the Los Angeles Angels, and Founder of Michael T. Roth Enterprises
The promotional video for Ignite! 2011 just won an International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Silver Award, which was presented during the 2012 IEDC Annual Conference in Houston, TX on October 2, 2012. Ignite! 2010 was recognized by the IEDC with its top award for Special Events in Populations Greater Than 500,000, and the Kauffman Foundation recognized EngenuitySC and Ignite! 2011 as a distinguished partner for its annual Global Entrepreneurship Week. The 2011 and 2012 videos can be found on EngenuitySC's YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9CYMCSIJ01A
Stay on top of Ignite! updates by following the #IgniteCAE hashtag and @EngenuitySC on Twitter or via Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/engenuitysc.
View a compilation of selected live tweets from the 2012 Ignite! event here: http://storify.com/EngenuitySC/ignite-the-conversation.