social enterprise

The National Institute for Social Impact (NI4SI), formerly the Colorado Institute for Social Impact (CI4SI), and co-presenter Vectra Bank, have announced this year's PRISM Awards finalists. The 5th Annual PRISM Awards — a celebration of social impact businesses and social entrepreneurs — will take place July 15, at SCP Hotel in Colorado Springs.

"Social Impact is the outcome of a mission-driven business or a business with a higher purpose that uses the powerful economic engine of capitalism for good, not merely for gain," an NI4SI-issued news release said. "Referred to as the fourth sector, social impact businesses and social entrepreneurs are changing the way business is done. Since the pandemic, there has been a rise in conscious consumers and more businesses determining how they can add purpose to their companies so that they can better support their communities and employees."

The PRISM Awards honors Colorado social impact businesses and social entrepreneurs in three categories for both the Northern and Southern regions: Social Impact Business of the Year, Social Impact Startup of the Year and Social Entrepreneur of the Year.

NI4SI announced the winners for the Northern Region early due to potential travel challenges for finalists. The winners of the Southern Region categories, however, will be announced the evening of the event.

Social Impact Business of the Year

o Northern Region Winner

▪ Adventurist Backpack Co. (Denver)

o Southern Region Finalists

▪ Beneficent

▪ Mountain Equipment Recyclers

▪ Mission Catering

Social Impact Startup of the Year

o Northern Region Winner

▪ Beyond Microgreens (Boulder)

o Southern Region Finalists

▪ Hike for Life

▪ Inherent Clothier

▪ Eclectic CO.

Social Entrepreneur of the Year

o Northern Region Winner

▪ Alex Koenigsberg (Founder of Arula Consulting, Fort Collins)

o Southern Region Finalists

▪ Jason Horn (Catering Manager at Mission Catering)

▪ Lorrie Myers (Owner/Founder of Who Gives a SCRAP)

▪ Tina Schwaner (Owner of Frayla Boutique & Hair Studio)

“We thank Colorado for their nominations and congratulate all nominees and finalists of the 5th annual PRISM Awards,” Jonathan Liebert, NI4SI CEO, said in the release. “The PRISM Awards enhances National Institute for Social Impact’s ongoing goal to create awareness of this growing sector of our economy and to celebrate those social impact businesses and social entrepreneurs who are creating impact for our communities.” 

Judges for the PRISM Awards were:

● Jonathan Liebert, executive director & CEO of the National Institute for Social Impact

● Thayer Tutt, vice chairman & chief investment officer, El Pomar Foundation

● George Reed, dean, UCCS School of Public Affairs

● Ted Mossman, market president, Great Western Bank

● Mackenzie Tamayo, program manager, Small Business Development Center

“We are thrilled to see the momentum in the social impact sector and its impact on our community. Congratulations to all the finalists and nominees,” Shawn Gullixson, vice president of Vectra Bank, said in the release. “Vectra Bank is passionate about supporting our local businesses and to support the mission and vision of our social impact entrepreneurs.”

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