Competitions & Awards

Most of these IL-based competitions and awards that Illinois startups and founders can compete for occur annually. Go for 'em, and best of luck! Every little bit of cash and recognition helps, for sure!

Our innovation hub members also receive info about dozens of national and international awards they might also win.

1871's Momentum Awards

The Corporate Champion, The Chicagoness, The Entrepreneurial Champion, The Momentum

Built In Chicago's Moxie Awards

Best Consumer Web Startup, Best B2B Startup, Best New Startup, Startup, Best Social Impact Startup, Most Disruptive Startup, Digital Agency, Best B2B Company, Best Consumer Web, Best Office Space, Best Company Culture, Breakthrough Digital Company, Women in Tech, CEO

Chicago Ideas Week's Bluhm/Helfand Social Innovation Fellows

The world’s most talented and dynamic social entrepreneurs under 35

Chicago Inno's 50 on Fire

B2B, B2C, Marketing/Advertising/Design/Development, Civic, Education, Lifestyle (Fashion, Food, Fitness & More), Health/Wellness, Supporters

Chicago Inno's Coolest Companies Awards

Best Perks, Best Office, Most Re-Tweetable, Most Giving, Wellness-est

Chicago Innovation's Awards

Chicago Innovation, People's Choice, Up-and-Comer, Social Innovator, Neighborhood, Collaboration, Special Awards

Chicago RedEye's Big Idea Awards

Technology, Community Involvement & Civic Engagement,  Art & Design, Food & Drink

DePaul University Coleman Center's Pitch Purpose Fest

$25,000 in prize money to the best social entrepreneurship startups

EigerLAB FastPitch Competition

Best Startups, Clean Tech, Student Startup, Dale Falconer “Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award”

FUND Conference's Midwest Next Awards

Promising and proven early-stage companies & VC firms in the Midwest

Future Founders' EntrepreneurshipU Awards

Entrepreneurship Professor, Undergrad Collegiate Entrepreneurship Course, Graduate Entrepreneurship Course, Student Startup, Entrepreneurial Student Leader, Entrepreneurship Club

Illinois Technology Association's CityLIGHTS Awards

Institute for Entrepreneurship in University of Illinois at Chicago's Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame Awards

College of Business Administration's Chicago Area Entrepreneurship Hall of Fame Lifetime Achievement Award

mHUB, ITEC and UI Labs's Fourth Revolution Awards

Community Empowerment, Product Design, Innovation, Startup Rising Star, Small & Mid-Sized Manufacturer, Manufacturer, Corporate Champion

Mongo DB's Annual Innovation Awards

Mongo DB Atlas, Customer Experience, Date-Driven Business, Healthcare, Internet of Things, Launch Fast, Modern Enterprise Architecture, Partner, Scale, Single View, The Enterprise Startup, The Startup Enterprise, The William Zola Outstanding Contributor Award

Northwestern Garage's Wildfire End-of-Program Demo Day

Teams showcase and pitch their startups for $10,000 in prizes

Revolution Fund's 1776 Challenge Cup (1871 managed this competition in Chicago in 2017)

Best Chicago Startup (that startup competes with startups from 75 worldwide cities for a $100,000 prize)

South Side Pitch

Innovative startups located south of Chicago’s skyline

Tech in Motion's Timmy Awards

Best Technology Manager, Best Tech Startup, Best Tech Work Culture, Best Tech Workplace for Diversity

University of Chicago's New Venture Challenge

Edward L. Kaplan, '71, College, Social, Global

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We make every effort to create accurate, up-to-date, leading-edge information but have no liability for anything that doesn't meet that standard.

Carol Abrahamson

Founder & Executive Director

Carol at CarolAbrahamson dot-com


2500 North Annie Glidden Rd, Suite F

DeKalb, IL 60115​​