Finalists announced for 14th annual Innovation Celebration

Finalists announced for 14th annual Innovation Celebration

CHAMPAIGN — The Champaign County Economic Development Corp. has announced the finalists for the 14th annual Innovation Celebration.

The awards recognize individuals and organizations that have contributed to innovation and economic development in the area.

The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony March 29 at Parkland College.

Information, including how to RSVP, is available at

The finalists include:

Entrepreneurial Excellence: Social Venture Award

— The Land Connection
— New American Welcome Center at the University YMCA
— Urbana-Champaign Independent Media Center

Entrepreneurial Excellence: Student Startup Award

— RingWing LLC
— HexNest
— DeepWalk

Entrepreneurial Excellence: New Venture Award

— AirScout Inc.
— EarthSense Inc.
— SimBioSys Inc.

Entrepreneurial Excellence: Paul Magelli Advocacy Award

— Mark Aardsma
— Edwin Moore
— Roland Garton

Entrepreneurial Excellence: Management Award

— Landon Frye, Jake Kreider and Sophie Roney, Granular Inc.
— Shira Epstein and Dan Epstein, Champaign Outdoors/
— James Langer, Serionix

Innovation: Economic Development Impact Award

— Small Business Incentive Program (City of Champaign)
— Lodgic Everyday Community
— Matt Cho (Cake Design Development)

Award winners:

2019 Innovation Transfer Award-University of Illinois

— Dr. Andrew Alleyne, Thermosys/POETS Engineering Research Center

2019 Alexis Wernsing Innovation Award-University of Illinois

— Adam Bleakney, Illinois Wheelchair Athletics

2019 Innovation in Engagement Award-Parkland College

— Peg Boyce, Dental Hygiene Program