Media Coverage of Propeller


Propeller Awarded Regions Foundation Grant for Small-Business Growth in New Orleans

Biz New Orleans 15 April 2024

Propeller is among the recipients of $100,000 from the Regions Foundation to help fund a collaboration between Propeller, Thrive NOLA and Fund 17 organizations. This collaborative initiative aims to address the specific needs of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) small-business owners who have historically faced more limited access to capital needed for business growth. Together, these nonprofits are dedicated to growing and supporting entrepreneurs in New Orleans while addressing social and environmental disparities.


Propeller Announces ’23 Impact Accelerator Ventures

Uptown Messenger 11 August 2023

Propeller announces the 20 ventures selected for our nationally recognized Impact Accelerator. This program catalyzes transformative social impact by supporting startup and growth entrepreneurs working towards community oriented solutions to our region’s most pressing challenges in community economic development, education, food, health, and water.

Local startups work with city to manage stormwater, build out green infrastructure

City Business 13 March 2023

When the sky opens up and an afternoon deluge swamps neighborhoods across New Orleans, it may seem only logical to want to pump that water out as quickly as possible. For most of the city’s history, officials and engineers put countless hours and immeasurable effort into doing just that. But, over the past decade, the wisdom of focusing only on pumping stormwater out has been called into question.


W.K. Kellogg Foundation News

W.K. Kellogg Foundation News 2 November 2022

WKKF grantee, Propeller, has coordinated multi-year research to improve healthy food access and consumption for New Orleans public school children.These findings led to recommendations such as scheduling recess or physical activity before the lunch meal to increase students’ healthy food consumption and not implementing punitive lunchroom practices, such as silent lunch, which has a direct negative impact on meal-eating levels.

June 12 Deadline for Applications to Propeller’s Impact Accelerator

Biz New Orleans 7 June 2022

Applications are open for Propeller’s Impact Accelerator, a 4-month program that helps startup entrepreneurs bring their ideas from vision to reality and helps existing entrepreneurs scale their impact and reach. The Impact Accelerator has supported over 300 businesses and nonprofits rooted in financial viability, social impact, racial equity, and commitment to our city and region. These ventures have generated $262+ million in revenue and financing, and created over 485 new jobs.


Entrepreneurs navigate the consumer-packaged goods industry through Propeller’s program 10 August 2021

The focus on consumer-packaged goods follows Propeller’s recent food manufacturing partnership with Greater New Orleans, Inc., Edible Enterprises and St. Charles Parish, the New Orleans Business Alliance, University of Holy Cross, Volunteers of America, Xavier University, and the Louisiana Small Business Development Center. It aims to grow the region’s food manufacturing industry.



Alyssa Hernandez launches Prosper Preserve Co. to save food that would be thrown away 2 December 2019

Alyssa Hernandez knows hunger. Being homeless as a teenager gave her perspective on food access. In 2018, she created No Hunger NOLA (, an organization dedicated to eradicating food waste and improving access to nutrition. Hernandez, who also works at Cochon, and her partner Matthew Holland, a sous chef at Justine, take excess food from restaurants, groceries and other providers and make gourmet canned goods. With the help of Propeller’s impact accelerator program, she will relaunch the project as Prosper Preserve Co. in January 2020. Hernandez also will set up a nonprofit side to do policy work.

‘Propeller Pop!’ celebrates social entrepreneurs with pop-up chef showcase

In the NOLA 4 November 2019

On Wednesday, November 6th, Propeller will open its doors for Propeller Pop!, its annual fundraiser celebrating social entrepreneurs in New Orleans with a showcase of local pop-up restaurants. The event celebrates the 30 entrepreneurs in Propeller’s Impact Accelerator, which works with entrepreneurs to build businesses rooted in financial sustainability, social impact, and racial equity.

Propeller Pop! 2019

WGNO 24 October 2019

Propeller Pop! is the annual gala event hosted by Propeller: A Force For Social Innovation celebrating social entrepreneurs and innovation in New Orleans… Since 2011, Propeller has accelerated over 215 entrepreneurs, 71% are women or people of color. Their ventures have created over 485+ jobs and generated over $112 million in revenue and financing. The event features over 10 pop-up restaurants, a tasting room by Roulaison Distilling Co., a silent auction, and more surprises popping up throughout the evening. Featured pop-ups include Nayo Jones Experience, Zulu Connection, and a tasting of New Orleans’ best pop-up restaurants: Ma Momma’s House of Cornbread, Chicken and Waffles, Ms. Gloria’s Kitchen, Cupcake Fairies, Vaucresson Sausage, Mia X – Whip Dem Pots, Cocktails by Pop!, Brother2Sister Catering, We Dat’s Chicken and Shrimp, Piety & Desire Chocolate, and Whiskey & Sticks.

Alas trains advocates of at-risk students

New Orleans City Business 14 September 2019

Alas won first place and $8,000 at the Education Challenge, Propeller’s annual pitch competition for entrepreneurs promoting equitable education throughout the city. Alas also was accepted into a $25,000 fellowship from the Kellogg Foundation to help implement these efforts. With funding from PitchNOLA, Alas will expand from a program to an organization, doubling its impact to 1,000 students over the next year.

Creating a Resilient Local Food Economy in New Orleans

Food Tank 1 September 2019

The result of a three-year long collaborative study on the potential of institutional procurement in New Orleans was recently released by Propeller, a New Orleans-based nonprofit that supports social and environmental entrepreneurs; the New Orleans Food Policy Advisory Committee; and the Wallace Center at Winrock International, a nonprofit organization working on agriculture, environment, and social development projects. The report, Farm to Institution New Orleans: Feasibility and Pilot Study, analyzes the pathways towards a more equitable, resilient local food economy.

Conquering Water

Biz New Orleans 1 April 2019

On March 21, Luisa Abballe and Arien Hall of Mastodonte took home the first place prize of $10,000 at The Water Challenge, presented by Greater New Orleans Foundation, the first of three annual pitch competitions known collectively as PitchNOLA. T


Twelve Organizations Driving More Inclusive Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

ICIC Blog 13 March 2018

To address the critical gap in support for minority and women entrepreneurs, and catalyze a national conversation around inclusive economic growth, JPMorgan Chase has expanded their Small Business Forward initiative with a multi-year commitment of $150 million to support women-, minority- and veteran-owned small businesses with greater access to capital, technical support and guidance.

Twelve Organizations Driving More Inclusive Entrepreneurial Ecosystems

ICIC Blog 31 January 2018

To address the critical gap in support for minority and women entrepreneurs, and catalyze a national conversation around inclusive economic growth, JPMorgan Chase has expanded their Small Business Forward initiative with a multi-year commitment of $150 million to support women-, minority- and veteran-owned small businesses with greater access to capital, technical support and guidance.


Propeller Welcomes 24 Social Innovators to New Orleans Startup Accelerator

Silicon Bayou News 14 September 2017

New Orleans-based Propeller exists to support local entrepreneurs tackling the city’s social and environmental inequities. Each year the non-profit welcomes social innovators with big ideas to increase access to healthy food, equitable education, health services, and water management. Twenty four early-stage businesses and non-profits have been selected to participate in Propeller’s three-month fall Startup Accelerator.

Twenty Four Innovators Are Ready To Empower New Orleans Through Propeller’s Startup Accelerator

NOLA Business Media 13 September 2017

Propeller, an accelerator that focuses on supporting social entrepreneurs, announced their program’s Fall 2017 Startup Accelerator Class. This year, the Startup Accelerator is welcoming 24 early-stage businesses and nonprofits to the intensive three-month program, which is designed to help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into businesses that tackle some of the social and environmental disparities that plague New Orleans. These challenges include inequities in access to food, education, health services and water management.

Party with a Purpose at Propeller Pop, Support Social Entrepreneurship in New Orleans

Silicon Bayou News 12 September 2017

Propeller is dedicated to growing and supporting startups, businesses, and non-profits to tackle inequities in food, water, health, and education. The event is designed to be an opportunity to toast to Propeller’s social entrepreneurs in addition to taste dishes from 10 of the best local pop-up restaurants and chefs. Organizers welcome attendees to wear festive attire with a pop of color.

Can an Incubator Increase Your Company’s Odds of Success

OZY 3 August 2017

Start-ups seem to be the businesses that grab the most headlines these days — thanks to an enticing combo of disruption, twentysomething billionaires and playground-like offices. But behind many a wildly successful start-up, there was first a start-up incubator. And without these unsung heroes, big names including Airbnb and Dropbox might never have lived to make the impact they do today.

How Ecosystem Builders Can Best Help Entrepreneurs Succeed – A Year of VilCap Communities

Village Capital Blog 27 July 2017

In 2016, Village Capital launched VilCap Communities, a 26-city pilot to license our curriculum and investment model to accelerators, incubators and investors around the globe. This report compiles lessons learned, based on survey data and interviews with >100 ecosystem leaders and entrepreneurs. Village Capital found that many entrepreneur support organizations promise everything to everyone, and end up failing for that reason. We offer specific lessons on how to find, train and invest in entrepreneurs, including:

Reinvention in Middle America

culture forecast 27 June 2017

Conventional wisdom suggests that to peer into the crystal ball of America’s future, one should go to Silicon Valley to check out the latest start-up unicorns, or to New York or Los Angeles to scout emerging trends in fashion and food. Middle America, on the other hand, is often described as if it’s on the margins of culture and innovation — “flyover country” — provincial, unsophisticated and stuck in the past. But Middle America is diverse and although it is not stuck in the past —rhetoric about it is.

We’ve Got Your Weekend: It’s a HodgePodge

NolaVie 7 June 2017

Propeller Incubator and Caravan Cinema NOLA have teamed up to screen Ava DuVerny’s multi-award winning documentary 13th. The film examines the racial inequity of America’s prison system. A brief, informal discussion will be held afterwards, forming part of Propeller’s Racial Equity awareness drive.

#MyStartupStory: Bluefin Data Simplifying Reporting Process for Seafood Industry

Startup Southerner 1 June 2017

When you buy seafood, you probably picture a boat and a net, not the myriad regulatory hoops and requirements fishermen and seafood dealers have to contend with before you can eat it. But it’s about to be a lot easier for the industry, thanks to the Baton Rouge, Louisiana-based tech startup Bluefin Data, which has created VESL, a “hook to database” software platform designed to simplify and consolidate government reporting for the seafood industry.

Propeller Awards $10,000 To New Orleans Social Startups

Nibletz 31 May 2017

Social and civic focused startups in New Orleans joined local incubator, Propeller, for a pitch event last Wednesday. Propeller is a non profit organization that’s been helping entrepreneurs launch social ventures in New Orleans since 2009. Propeller’s PitchNOLA Living Well pitch competition featured 10 entrepreneurs competing for their part in $10,000 in prize money.

Preserving New Orleans “Water Economy”

Washington Monthly 8 May 2017

The Water Challenge culminates in a pitched-based competition at the New Orleans Entrepreneur Week, which offers as much as $15,000 for ideas addressing the opportunities and challenges in the water sector. It’s all about redirecting New Orleans’ and southeastern Louisiana’s relationship with water in the age of climate change—a relationship the state’s scientists say will determine if our region will still be above water in 50 years.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Names New Orleans “Silicon City”

Silicon Bayou News 3 May 2017

New Orleans is not Silicon Valley, and it’s not trying to be. The Big Easy undoubtedly has its own thing going on, and the world is starting to notice. While New Orleans has always been entrepreneurial, the city has seen a technology and innovation boom in the last few years, as recognized by media outlets and organizations including Forbes, the Kauffman Foundation, and The Data Center.

Tulane partners with Center for Healthy Food Access

Tulane Hullabaloo 20 April 2017

Many New Orleans residents are living in a food desert without access to healthy, quality foods needed for a substantial diet. To alleviate the public health concerns associated with the city’s lack of healthy food availability, Tulane partnered with the Center for Healthy Food Access. The center is a national initiative developed by the Food Trust that works to make sure every child in the country has access to nutritional and affordable food.

Tulane joins national healthy food initiative

Tulane University News 31 March 2017

Although New Orleans has seen a resurgence in supermarkets since Hurricane Katrina, some neighborhoods still lack healthy food options, and many are overwhelmed by an abundance of unhealthy choices. To address this issue, Tulane University has joined the newly launched Center for Healthy Food Access, led by The Food Trust and supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to support innovative approaches to providing healthy food options to more people.

Where are they now? A look at 5 New Orleans startups

The Times-Picayune 21 March 2017

Starting a business is tough. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only about half of all business ventures make it past the five-year mark. This winter, more than a dozen New Orleans startups will complete coaching programs at the Idea Village, Propeller and other business accelerators, hoping to fine tune their ideas and beat the odds.

Bluefin Data Wins Propeller’s Water Challenge

Silicon Bayou News 20 March 2017

The Water Challenge is a collaborative initiative between the Greater New Orleans Foundation, Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, and The Idea Village focused on solving critical regional water issues through entrepreneurship in Louisiana. The goal is to support ventures who are working to make the region more sustainable.

New Orleans eyes ways to get more fresh food in corner stores

The Times-Picayune 14 March 2017

City officials want to see more fresh produce sold in New Orleans corner stores, unveiling plans to launch a small-scale effort to test whether fresh food sells in small neighborhood venues. Nonprofit leaders told City Council members on Tuesday (March 14) that the absence of fresh, healthy foods in corner stores is largely a consequence of perceptions on the part of store owners.

LSU’s Industrial Innovation Center helps the ‘Louisiana Chemical Corridor’ come to fruition

Greater Baton Rouge Business Report 17 February 2017

Last November, the Louisiana Chemical Corridor partnership notched its first win, when the Department of Commerce granted $498,624 to establish an Industrial Innovation Center at LSU. Of the more than 215 organizations nationwide that applied, LSU was one of 34 to receive a grant meant to “make U.S. communities, businesses and the workforce more globally competitive.”

Tech Park partners with Propeller on water projects accelerator

The Advocate 13 January 2017

The Louisiana Technology Park is partnering with Propeller to expand the New Orleans-based nonprofit’s Growth Accelerator program to Baton Rouge. The partners are accepting applications for a free, three-month program that offers entrepreneurs and small business owners help growing their urban water and coastal ventures. The program offers tailored mentorships, resources and networks to participants.


Propeller, BioInnovation Center and Business Alliance awarded $500,000 by Chase for small businesses

The Advocate 16 December 2016

Three New Orleans-based nonprofits will split $500,000 in grants from JPMorgan Chase & Co. to support programs promoting small business growth, the bank said Friday. The largest award recipient is the New Orleans BioInnovation Center, which is receiving $250,000. Propeller, a business incubator that focuses on ventures planning to tackle pressing issues facing New Orleans, and the New Orleans Business Alliance will each receive $125,000 from the bank.

Local Impact Investment Get $500,000 Boost After Living Cities Announcement

Silicon Bayou News 15 December 2016

During Propeller’s annual Demo Day, which celebrates the accomplishments of social entrepreneurs graduating from the Startup Accelerator program, the organization made an exciting announcement. Propeller and the Foundation for Louisiana will form a new loan fund in 2017, and Living Cities will invest up to $500,000 in entrepreneurs who tackling social and environmental issues in Southeast Louisiana.

Nonprofit launches water challenge initiative

Houma Courier 10 December 2016

A meeting will be held Thursday in Gray on New Orleans nonprofit group Propeller’s competitive initiative focused on solving southeast Louisiana’s most pressing water issues. Water Challenge 2017 seeks solutions that can make a big difference in urban water, coastal environments and water-based industries.

Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down

Gambit 5 December 2016

Propeller and the New Orleans Starter Fund received $250,000 to create the Propeller Social Impact Equity Fund, part of a $15 million national initiative from the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Regional Innovation Strategies Program. The fund will help invest in new local companies through a three-month accelerator program.

A Comprehensive List of New Orleans Co-Working Spaces

Silicon Bayou News 1 December 2016

The word coworking was first used in 1999 to describe collaborative work. Today, coworking spaces are prevalent across the globe. New Orleans has its own crop of coworking spaces. Over the last few years, the number of coworking spaces in the Big Easy has more than doubled. We’ve rounded up as many of the New Orleans spaces and details we could find. Check out the list, in alphabetical order.

5 New Orleans education startups to watch

The Times-Picayune 1 December 2016

New Orleans continues to gain national recognition as a hotbed for innovation in education. This fall, five local ventures are working on solutions to improve educational access from birth to adulthood. The startups shared their ideas Nov. 3 as part of PitchNOLA: Education, a business pitch organized by Propeller, an incubator focused on growing sustainable socially minded ventures.

Incubating Progress, One Small Business At A Time

The Atlantic 29 November 2016

The creation of opportunity isn’t driven by a single sweeping action. It’s more often built over time, the accumulation of a huge number of small but essential efforts and institutions. In America’s inner cities, for example, research from the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) has shown that small businesses (those with five to 249 employees) and micro-businesses (firms with one to four employees) are the primary drivers of job creation and employment rates. Small businesses accounted for almost 100 percent of all businesses in the five major cities surveyed.

Organizations win funding to help education in New Orleans

WWLTV 27 November 2016

First Place Winner in Propeller’s PitchNOLA: Education competition was Flor Serna with the organization, “Electric Girls”. Electric Girls’ mission is to educate young girls about jobs in technology and electronics. Second place went to Derrick Perique’s organization, RisingFoundations. He is raising money to help convicts get an education and develop marketable skills.

Coworking Spaces in New Orleans

Where Y'at Magazine 15 November 2016

Propellor is another space that’s part for-profit and part ambitious nonprofit. Half the building is a coworking space with desks, offices, couches, kitchen, etc. The other half (of both the building and the organization) is an incubator: a program that encourages and enables the growth of small ventures, especially other nonprofits.

Group seeks food alliance

The Hammond Star 5 November 2016

Propeller-launched the Healthy School Food Collaborative organizes a Florida Parish-wide alliance of organizations committed to ensure students who receive free or reduced lunch during the school year can access fresh, healthy, reliable food during summer months.

EDA Annual Report

U.S. Economic Development Administration 27 June 2016

On August 29, 2015, 10 years to the day that Hurricane Katrina made landfall in the city, EDA awarded $300,000 to support the Water Accelerator program, a regional entrepreneurship initiative dedicated to building the city’s water industry cluster. The EDA-funded program will provide business consulting services, technical assistance, mentoring, and other resources as needed to facilitate the growth of an estimated 10 to 20 businesses looking to address regional coastal and urban water issues, especially as it relates to coastal restoration, urban water retention and quality, maritime industries and ports, and fisheries.


Idea Village, Propeller among recipients of federal grants unveiled Thursday

The Advocate 27 August 2015

Two New Orleans-based nonprofits that support entrepreneurs were among four recipients of nearly $2.1 million in federal grants announced Thursday from the U.S. Department of Economic Development. Propeller, which helps launch business ventures that focus on the city’s pressing issues, will receive $300,000 to offer businesses that are addressing coastal and urban water issues more opportunities for consulting, monitoring and other resources.

How Small-Business Growth And Entrepreneurship Have Powered New Orleans’ Post-Katrina Comeback

Huffington Post 13 July 2015

Today, with our partners at GNO, Inc. and the NOLA Business Alliance, New Orleans is diversifying its economy, creating jobs in digital media and bioscience, and fostering an emerging environmental industry focused on coastal restoration and sustainability, all while sustaining foundational industries like energy, international trade, advanced manufacturing and hospitality.

H2 Show

NOLA Defender 22 March 2015

NOLA Defender highlights the upcoming “Living With Water” Civic Design Pitch to take place at the 5th Annual Water Challenge. The pitch will be New Orleans’ first-ever crowd-sourced civic design competition.

Propeller Healthy Food Access

WWLTV 10 January 2015

Part 4 of WWLTV’s series on Propeller features two Propeller Fellows who are organizing businesses that focus on access to healthy food – Healthy School Food Collaborative (Propeller ’13) and Jack & Jake’s (Propeller ’12).


ChangeWorks: Jack and Jake’s

NolaVie 7 November 2014

ChangeWorks, a partnership between Propeller and NolaVie, features Propeller ’12 Fellow Jack and Jake’s, a company bringing high quality, affordable, local fresh foods to schools, universities, hospitals, and underserved communities in New Orleans.

The Water Challenge for New Orleans area environmental startups is moving to the Propeller incubator

The Times-Picayune 12 August 2014

Propeller assumes management of the 2014-2015 Water Challenge, which will take place this March during the 7th Annual New Orleans Entrepreneur Week. This year’s Water Challenge expands to include the 12-week Water Challenge Peer Mentorship, which will include business-scoping, consulting, and support leading up to the $10,000 Water Challenge business pitch competition.

Contest seeking solutions for vacant lots has a Tuesday deadline

The Times-Picayune 14 July 2014

The deadline to apply for the PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition is imminent – set for tomorrow, July 15, at 4pm. Applicants are encouraged to turn in their requests for proposals by the deadline for the chance to pitch their ideas live on August 19th and win $7500, access to Propeller’s advisory services, and the opportunity to develop their business on commercial lots around New Orleans.

PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress Application Deadline Nears

Silicon Bayou News 10 July 2014

This year, Propeller partners with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) to offer the winner of Propeller’s annual PitchNOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition the opportunity to rent or purchase vacant lots of land, along with a $7500 cash price provided by Entergy, and access to Propeller’s advisory and technical services. Entrepreneurs and businesses with innovative ideas are encouraged to apply by 4pm on July 15, 2014 to participate in the pitch competition, which will be held at Propeller on 19 August, 2014.

PitchNOLA Looking for Lots of Progress

NOLA Defender 8 July 2014

On August 19, Propeller’s Pitch NOLA 2014: Lots of Progress competition will award the winner the opportunity to rent or buy vacant plots of land – including properties in commercial, light industrial, and business zones – and “activate” economic development in neighborhoods across New Orleans.

Propeller incubator extends deadline, expands its socially minded entrepreneur accelerator 7 July 2014

Propeller’s Fourth Social Venture Accelerator promises the most robust curriculum to date, incorporating the participation of some of New Orleans’ brightest business leaders and adding a specific track for three Fellows solving water challenges. New major grants, including $1.295 million from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, have helped Propeller deepen its sector impact and offer expanded support to the city’s burgeoning community of social entrepreneurs. With an additional priority sector in water management, Propeller has extended the application deadline to August 1, 2014.

NORA seeks commercial ideas for vacant lots

New Orleans City Business 30 May 2014

New Orleans City Business covers NORA’s second partnership with Propeller and joint launch of PitchNOLA: Lots of Progress. This year’s competition focuses on rehabilitating vacant commercial lots. NORA’s targets lots are valued from $3,500 to $100,000 and were “selected based on the opportunities to foster new development.”

PitchNOLA finalists target health

NolaVie 23 April 2014

Don’t you hate it when Louisiana leads the rankings … in all the wrong categories? Local social incubator Propeller thinks it’s time for this to change. The entreprenurial organization’s PitchNOLA social innovation competition turns its eyes to health and fitness in its fifth year.

PitchNOLA to target health disparities

New Orleans CityBusiness 20 February 2014

Propeller’s upcoming PitchNOLA competition will focus on businesses developing health and fitness products. Sponsored by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the competition will award $10,000 in startup funding and technical assistance toward reducing health disparities, such as the high obesity and HIV/ AIDS rates, in New Orleans.


Wannabe Social Entrepreneur? How to Navigate the Growing World of Impact Accelerators

Entrepreneur 20 November 2013

New Orleans accelerator, Propeller, for example, leverages its local and national policy expertise to help entrepreneurs make an impact on their local community. “Every one of our fellows hits a policy challenge at some point, and we have the resources to support them,” explains Andrea Chen, Propeller’s executive director. “We believe that for social change to happen, grassroots entrepreneurs and policy need to align.”

Creators of social campaigns will take their ideas into competition at PitchNOLA on Tuesday

The Times-Picayune 18 November 2013

Ten ventures seeking to address social causes will vie for prize money at the annual PitchNOLA contest Tuesday in the Freeman Auditorium at Tulane University. The event, produced by the university and the Propeller entrepreneurship incubator, includes a $5,000 prize awarded by a panel of judges after hearing a series of idea pitches and an “audience favorite” prize set by a vote and cash donations from attendees.

Using contests to rehabilitate vacant lots

Center for Community Progress 5 September 2013

In the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans, David Young had been running his Capstone Community Gardens for three years before he heard about the city’s PitchNOLA 2012: Lots of Progress competition. Young supplies free food from the Gardens to a dozen families in what he describes as a post-Katrina “food desert,” but had received many calls for fruit. Lots of Progress awarded him first place, including his choice of two among 49 lots controlled by the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) to plant an orchard of 30-plus fruit trees: oranges, grapefruit, lemons, limes, bananas and figs.

NORA-Funded Building is New Home for Propeller Incubator

NORA Newsletter 26 August 2013

“As a part of our mission to celebrate and revitalize New Orleans’ neighborhoods with catalytic public investments, NORA has helped fund[…] the renovations of several key buildings near the intersection of Washington and Broad. Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation is one of the newest neighbors in the Broadmoor Community, with its new offices at 4035 Washington Avenue. Propeller is a resource for upstart businesses—particularly nonprofit and socially-minded companies— to help them to achieve organizational and financial stability.”

Shared Kitchen in Shreveport Creates Some NOLA Buzz

Eater NOLA 26 July 2013

Today in the annals of intriguing ideas, let us all get more acquainted with the Shreveport-Bossier City Kitchen Incubator, a Kickstarter project proposed by a nonprofit shared workspace called Cohab. Cohab, much like Propeller and Beta in New Orleans, offers nascent entrepreneurs and start-up companies office space…

Latin American business students counseled New Orleans start-ups through Capital One-Tulane partners 26 July 2013

A collaboration between Capital One Bank, Tulane University and the Propeller incubator for organizations promoting social causes resulted in business students from Guatemala and Panama counseling New Orleans start-ups on their financial management. The Latin American master’s of finance and management students visited last week to advise Propeller itself and some of its tenants.

BioFund reaches $1 million in small business loans for Hurricane Katrina-impacted parishes 18 July 2013

A low-interest loan program for small businesses called the BioFund and run by the New Orleans BioInnovation Center business incubator has surpassed the mark of issuing $1 million in financing for entrepreneurs. ….. The BioFund’s first beneficiary was the New Orleans maker of the Iconic health drink and a BioInnovation Center tenant, Be Well Nutrition. It went on to help the incubator for socially minded entrepreneurs, Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation, complete its new building in Broadmoor along with Green Coast Enterprises, an environmentally oriented real estate developer. The Propeller building opened in January.

Capital One Partners with Tulane and Propeller, Announces Plan to Help Local Small Businesses

Silicon Bayou News 16 July 2013

Capital One Bank has partnered with Tulane University and Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation to launch a service project benefiting local small businesses in New Orleans. Project organizers have enlisted help from fifty-four international Master of Finance and Management students and a team of eight analysts from Capital One to strategize and create financial solutions for the businesses.

The Rise of the Public Interest Incubator

Next City 10 July 2013

Writer Bill Bradley examines how Incubator models are being used nation-wide for community development. Propeller is listed as an example of a non-profit whose mission is to incubate social entrepreneurs, thereby helping the community in areas of healthy food access and affordable housing.

Applications Now Being Accepted for Propeller’s 2013-2014 Social Venture Accelerator

Silicon Bayou News 18 June 2013

After a successful second year of its Accelerator, Propeller is ready to bring in another 12 to 15 social ventures. To date, Propeller has incubated 21 new ventures (nine the first year and 12 in the last class), which have collectively generated $5.4 million in revenues and created 45 new jobs. The Social Venture Accelerator is a 10-month program designed to create socially-and-community-driven ventures.

Propeller Accepting Applications for Accelerator Program

City Business 12 June 2013

Propeller, the business incubator for social entrepreneurship, is now taking applications for next year’s Social Venture Accelerator. The 10-month program is designed to help socially conscious, for-profit and non-profit startups become operational and financially stable. Propeller accepts between 12 to 15 early stage ventures each year. Article includes the link to apply.

Meet the 12 Propeller Social Venture Accelerator Fellows

Silicon Bayou News 3 June 2013

Propeller recruits between 10 and 15 early-stage ventures each year to participate in the accelerator program. The Propeller Gala, which was held last Thursday evening at the Propeller Incubator, gave this year’s 12 companies a chance to pitch to crowd. Past and present Accelerator companies have propelled job creation, wealth, and scalable social impact. Beyond that, now over 40 organizations and 75 individuals have signed on as members of the Incubator. It’s currently the only coworking space in the city for socially minded businesses.

Out To Lunch With Kind-Hearted Capitalists

89.9 WWNO 3 June 2013

Peter Ricchuiti explores the new business paradigm of cooperation vs. competition on this week’s Out to Lunch with Andrea Chen and Reid Stone. Andrea’s socially conscious business incubator Propeller: A Force For Social Innovation takes an entrepreneur with a good idea and turns it into good for the community. Reid’s marketing company Hero Farm takes those socially conscious businesses out into the world.

Andrea Chen of Propeller: 5 Tips for Launching a Social Venture

OPEN Forum 30 April 2013

Post-Katrina New Orleans is a hotbed of entrepreneurial activity for a wide variety of young companies. Co-working organizations like The Idea Village and Launch Pad all contribute to a vibrant ecosystem for startups. Propeller, the latest rising-star accelerator and co-working company, is feeding off this momentum, and serving a fast-growing niche in New Orleans: social entrepreneurs.

Coworking: Is It Just A Fad Or The Future Of Business?

Forbes 25 April 2013

The rise in coworking spaces around the world have left more people yearning for work environments that are collaborative, inspiring, and stimulating. The Propeller Incubator is featured as New Orleans’ only co-working office for socially-minded businesses where peer-to-peer learning and collaboration are the norm.

New Orleans Preparing to Host its First Startup Weekend Business Building Marathon 5 April 2013

In a first-time event for New Orleans, about 50 aspiring entrepreneurs will gather Friday, form teams and spend 54 hours over the weekend molding ideas for new businesses. The event, called Startup Weekend, originated with a non-profit organization in Seattle and has unfolded in almost 500 cities across the country and internationally. The participants will gather Friday night at the Propeller Incubator in Broadmoor.

Business Pitch Contests Booming in New Orleans, But They’re Only an Early Step, Experts Say 29 March 2013

The custom of holding business pitch contests, where entrepreneurs with ideas vie for prizes before audiences and panels of judges, seems to have reached mania levels in New Orleans. Eleven of them unfolded in and around the Entrepreneur Week business festival this month. Propeller’s annual PitchNOLA competition, where community members pitch their ideas for funding and start-up support, is among the competitions offered. Last year $27,500 was given away to six socially- or environmentally-minded ventures.

Propeller to Host Startup Weekend Pitch Event

New Orleans City Business 20 March 2013

Entrepreneurs are invited to participate in a weekend pitch challenge to be held at the Propeller Incubator next month. Startup Weekend events have taken place in cities all over the world as a way to bring entrepreneurs together to pitch ideas and learn the basics of founding startups and launching successful business ventures. The New Orleans event will take place from April 5-7 and is open to designers, developers, marketing strategists and all types of entrepreneurs. Participants will have three days to develop and pitch their ideas. On Friday, they will form teams, their ideas and plan for the rest of weekend. On Saturday, they will meet with coaches from local business incubators to develop their business plan, and on Sunday the entrepreneurs will have to put the finishing touches on their products and presentations. Propellor is based at 4035 Washington Ave., in the Broadmoor neighborhood. For more information visit the event website. Reporter Maria Clark can be reached at

Super Nola: Insider’s tour of New Orleans

Los Angeles Times 1 February 2013

The Superbowl in the middle of Mardi Gras is bringing a steady steam of visitors to New Orleans for four weeks straight. The LA Times gives tourists the run down of how to make their time action packed with the best New Orleans has to offer. Propeller Fellows, Louisiana Lost Lands, is mentioned on page two as a wetlands tour “worth the price.”

Buses to Offer Dental Services

The Advocate 10 January 2013

Smiles2Geaux, a venture in the Propeller Accelerator Program, will offer free dental care to youth and the elderly by bus. The kickoff event of Smiles2Geaux, led by the organization’s founder Dr. Yaye Sarr, and Andrea Chen, Executive Director of Propeller, explained how a mobile dental clinic model will address the staggering rate of untreated cavities in New Orleans. Read Full Article

Incubator for socially minded entrepreneurs launches in New Orleans 4 January 2013

The Propeller Incubator opened its doors on January 2, 2013, to house socially minded startups and small businesses in a co-working office facility. Article covers the contribution and influence of Andrea Chen, Founder and Executive Director of Propeller, in making this new initiative possible, as well as profiling the tenants of the Incubator. Learn more about who Propeller is, the impact it is making, and how.


Ruby Slipper Brings Brunch to Burgundy

NOLA Defender 19 November 2012

Kevin Morgan-Rothschild and Doug Jacobs, Propeller Fellows and co-founders of Aquaponic Modular Production Systems (AMPS), will be providing fresh produce to the kitchen of The Ruby Slipper’s third location, which just opened on the corner of Touro in the Marigny. Owners Eric and Jennifer Weishaupt will support local farms and green-minded projects by partnering with AMPS to receive fresh herbs and tomatoes.

Propeller Shares Pro Bono Impact on A Billion + Change Live Webinar

A Billion + Change 4 September 2012

Recorded Webinar: “Hurricane Katrina Seven Years Later: How Skills-Based Service is Supporting a New Orleans Renaissance.” Guest speakers include Patricia Salas Pineda, VP of Toyota USA Foundation, Zack Rosenburg, Director of St. Bernard Project, Geoff Coats, Principal and Creative Director at Zande + Newman Design and Julia Stewart, Marketing Associate at Propeller: A Force for Social Innovation. Discussion covered how skills-based volunteers are being used to support long-term recovery efforts in communities.

A Look Into America’s Fastest Growing City

Forbes 26 July 2012

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau proves that New Orleans is now the fastest growing city in America. Propeller is highlighted for its “Direction & Leadership” in drawing new talent to the city and helping to launch new environmentally and socially-minded start ups.

End of the Line: Losing Louisiana?

Garden & Gun 1 July 2012

Propeller Fellows, Marie Gould and Lindsay Pick, co-founders of Louisiana Lost Lands Environmental Tours, take Garden & Gun Author, Roy Blount Jr., for an educational outboard catamaran tour of the wetlands. Among the sights seen were fields of irises and tiger lilies, roseate spoonbills, and a “hulking corroded pair of left-behind diesel oil pumps.”

Female entrepreneurs are making an impact in 2012

NolaVIE 10 January 2012

Andrea Chen, Executive Director and founding member of Propeller, has quickly expanded her non-profit over the past few years with the creation of several competitions and programs that help social entrepreneurs grow their financially sustainable, innovative, results-focused ventures. This year, the program will continue to expand with the opening of HUB NOLA.


The 2011 Silicon Bayou 100: Alphabetical 5 December 2011

Propeller has been selected for the 2011 Silicon Bayou 100. These 111 individuals (some are on the list in teams of 2 or 3) were nominated and selected for the 2011 Silicon Bayou 100 for their efforts over the past year in growing their own companies, supporting the companies of others, and being outstanding ambassadors representing Silicon Bayou around the world.

A Viewpoint: News with a Twisted Perspective 14 November 2011

Like the Idea Village, Propeller connects innovators with the resources necessary to start and build a business through different accelerator and mentor programs. However, Propeller emphasizes helping social entrepreneurs — individuals who want to start and grow financially sustainable, innovative, results-focused ventures.



Best of New Orleans: 40 Under 40 2 November 2009

Propeller Fellow, Dr. Arwen Podesta, is nominated for the Best of New Orleans Gambit Award: “40 Under 40” for her psychiatry practice working with the Unity for the Homeless, and for serving as the medical director of Odyssey House Louisiana, where she treats patients, particularly those with substance-abuse issues.


40 Under 40

Gambit 4 November 2008

Andrea Chen, executive director, was nominated to Gambit’s annual look at some of the young people who are making remarkable contributions to the New Orleans metropolitan region.