Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge

The American Farm Bureau Federation together with Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business Global Social Enterprise Initiative and the Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative’s StartupHoyas announced the four national finalists of the first-ever Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge in November 2014. The challenge provides an opportunity for individuals to showcase ideas and business innovations being developed in rural regions of the United States.

The four challenge finalists will each win $15,000. They will pitch their business ideas to a team of judges at the AFBF 96th Annual Convention in San Diego in January 2015 in hopes of winning the Rural Entrepreneur of the Year Award for an additional $15,000, and the Peoples’ Choice Award for $10,000 more. The challenge will provide the finalists with prize money totaling $85,000 to implement their ideas.

  • Pasturebird, LLC (Temecula, California), a cost-effective method of producing pastured poultry on a large scale. Team lead: Paul Greive;
  • Pulaski Grow (Pulaski, Virginia), an aquaponics facility to provide local youth with job training. Team lead: Lee Spiegel;
  • ScoutPro (Lone Tree, Iowa), software to assist farmers with crop maintenance. Team lead: Michael Koenig; and
  • Golden Bridges, Senior Move Management (Palmyra, Missouri), customized moving and relocation services for older Americans. Team lead: Suzanne Ellerbrock.
For more information about the finalists and the next step of the challenge, see the official press release.