This is a past Pitch NOLA opportunity

PitchNOLA 2013: Community Solutions

Community Solutions Driven By You

Application deadline has passed. Please click here to see this year’s semifinalists. Click here for tickets to the event.

Community Solutions Driven by You

We believe community involvement is essential in driving social progress. PitchNOLA: Community Solutions ensures that your ideas are heard with the chance at funding to make them happen. No one knows the community’s needs better than its members, so we’re all ears.

  • How could the lives of New Orleanians, especially those who are most disadvantaged or at-risk, be improved?
  • What products or services are needed to contribute to an equitable and vibrant New Orleans?
  • Where are the struggles and roadblocks to change, and how can we move through them?

PitchNOLA: Community Solutions is a pitch competition with a simple mission: to provide a platform for community members to propose their solutions to our city’s most pressing social and environmental challenges. It’s then our job to facilitate start-up funding, project support, and media coverage to ensure the community benefits from the best and most innovative ideas!

$5,000+ in Start-up Funding, Project Support, and Media Coverage

Selected semi-finalists will pitch their ideas in front of a voting audience and panel of judges on Tuesday, November 19, 2013 at Tulane University for the chance at $5,000 in cash prizes.

The “First Place Winner” will receive a $5,000 cash prize, pro bono technical assistance, and consulting through Propeller.

The “Audience Favorite Award” will be funded through audience participation.

From Pitch to Impact

PitchNOLA has grown considerably over the last four years, bringing to the stage an impressive selection of highly innovative, early-stage ventures. Over 100 applications were received for PitchNOLA 2012, and over 650 community members registered to attend.

PitchNOLA has received notable attention from the Times Picayune, The Advocate, Silicon Bayou News, New Orleans City Business, WWLTV, Invade NOLA, Tulane New Wave, and local business blogs.

In the Words of Past PitchNOLA Winners:

“PitchNOLA was a phenomenal platform for JAC to present the expungement issue to the public. The $5,000 1st place prize will increase our capacity to service more clients, thereby helping to break the cycle of recidivism and contribute to a thriving and healthy New Orleans.”

- Ameca Reali, Co-Founder, Justice and Accountability Center of Louisiana

“Birthmark is excited and honored to have won at PitchNOLA! The generous funding will allow us to double the number of families we work with, document the evidence that doulas make a difference, and help build our case for change. We believe that New Orleans can go from having the worst birth outcomes in the country to being a national leader in healthy birth outcomes for women and children.”

- Dana Karen, Co-Founder, Birthmark Doula Collective


All New Orleanians are eligible to apply with few exceptions. The first step is to attend a competition overview to get your questions answered!

PitchNOLA Q&A sessions will be held at the Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Ave. *These sessions are optional.

To access a complete overview of the competition and application process, please click here.

The application deadline is Thursday, October 17, 2013. Click here for the online application.

Apply Online


  • PitchNOLA is a contest open to anyone residing in, or relocating to, the Greater New Orleans Area. This includes individuals or teams, for profit or nonprofit ideas, with or without an incorporated business.

  • No need for 20-page business plans. We’re looking for projects in the start-up phase.

  • If you have an existing venture (legally incorporated), your venture must have earned less than $50,000 in the previous fiscal calendar year (including sales, grant funding, capital, earned revenue, etc.).

  • Your idea should be a stand-alone effort that operates independently of existing organizations (including, but not limited to, management, staff, and infrastructure).

  • If you are selected as a semi-finalist, you must be present at the Pitch Workshop on Thursday, November 7, 2013 and the Community Solutions competition on Tuesday, November 19, 2013.


Attend a competition overview to get your questions answered (optional)

PitchNOLA Q&A sessions will be held at the Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Ave., and will cover eligibility, selection criteria, application process, and more.

How do I apply?

Fill out the online application by Thursday, October 17, 11:59pm CST.


  • Clearly measurable, verifiable, and potentially significant social impacts.
  • Knowledge about the needs of your target markets, both your users/beneficiaries and your buyers.
  • Clear explanation for how your product or service will address these needs.
  • Market research that demonstrates interest from your target markets in using and/or buying your product or service.
  • Clear understanding of what it takes to successfully implement your idea (team credibility & financial understanding).


Qualifying Round — Online Application

  • The first round of the competition is based on an online application, which must be submitted by Thursday, October 17, 11:59pm CST. Proposals will be scored by a committee of business leaders, academic faculty, and community members with experience and expertise in community revitalization and social/environmental impact organizations.
  • Semi-finalists will be selected and notified on Friday, November 1, 2013.

Final Round — PitchNOLA 2013: Community Solutions!

  • Tuesday, November 19, 6:30-8:30pm, selected semi-finalists will pitch their solutions at Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium.
  • Semi-finalists will have three minutes to pitch their ideas and present their slides to a panel of three “celebrity judges” and a voting audience.
  • Following the presentations, the judging panel will select three of the semi-finalists for a round of follow-up questions. Judges will then select the First Place winner in front of the live audience.
  • Finally, the voting audience will select the winner for the “Audience Favorite” award, funded by audience participation. All semi-finalists are eligible for this award.

Business Support & Events

PitchNOLA Q&A Sessions (Optional)

  1. Tuesday, August 27, 2013, 6:00pm-7:00pm (Click to Register)
  2. Thursday, October 3, 2013, 6:00pm-7:00pm (Click to Register)

  • For interested applicants to ask questions about the competition, their eligibility, selection criteria, and more.

Business Modeling for Lean Startups (Strongly Encouraged)
Monday, September 23, 2013, 5:30-7:30pm (Click to Register)

Pitch Workshop // Thursday, November 7, 2013, 6:00-8:00pm (Required for semi-finalists)

  • This workshop will assist semi-finalists with the development of their final presentation slides and pitches.


  • The “First Place Winner” will receive a $5,000 cash prize, pro bono technical assistance, and consulting through Propeller.
  • Winners are expected to use the award money and consulting hours in order to advance their winning ideas.

Audience Participation

Audience members play a key role in this competition as part of PitchNOLA’s goal to better connect social entrepreneurs with networks and resources.

Click here to register as a PitchNOLA 2013 audience member!

  • A suggested $5 donation to become an audience member at PitchNOLA will fund the “Audience Favorite Award.” Additional donations towards this award are greatly appreciated. Votes will be cast via text message on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013 at the live competition.
  • Additionally, we encourage audience members to provide relevant contacts, resources, or constructive feedback to assist PitchNOLA’s semi-finalists in pursing their ideas. Feedback cards will be provided at the competition.
  • Seats are available on a first come, first served basis. Doors open at 6:00pm.

For questions, contact Julia Stewart, Propeller Programs Manager, at

Key Dates

  • PitchNOLA Application Q&A #1

    Tuesday, August 27, 6:00pm-7:00pm
    Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Avenue (Click to Register)

  • PitchNOLA Application Q&A #2

    Thursday, October 3, 6:00pm-7:00pm
    Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Avenue (Click to Register)

  • Business Modeling for Lean Startups

    Monday, September 23, 2013
    Propeller Incubator, 4035 Washington Avenue (Click to Register)

  • Application Deadline

    Thursday, October 17, 11:59pm CST

  • Pitch Workshop (required for semi-finalists)

    Thursday, November 7, 6:00pm-8:00pm
    Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium

  • PitchNOLA 2013: Community Solutions

    Tuesday, November 19, 6:30pm-8:30pm
    Tulane University, Woldenberg Art Center, Freeman Auditorium