Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation

Warf News & Media

Marquette University and WARF announce third annual ‘Force for Positive Change’ event and award

Laura Heisler, Director of Programming
[email protected]  |  608.316.4392

Applications are open for the social entrepreneurship competition that identifies next generation, financially sustainable ideas making an impact in Wisconsin

MADISON — The Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, Marquette University and partners across the state have announced that applications are open for the third annual Force for Positive Change award.

The Force for Positive Change is a statewide competition that focuses on social entrepreneurship as a model for solving social or environmental challenges in a way that is sustainable, just and generates impact in Wisconsin. To be eligible, entities must be an incorporated enterprise—a nonprofit, for-profit or hybrid company—with a revenue-generating product or service; address a significant social and/or environmental challenge that exists in Wisconsin through their products, services or operations; and have a staff based in Wisconsin.

“We are excited to celebrate and recognize organizations that are forces of positive change in their communities because they are creating positive, social impact and solving issues on the ground level,” said Kelsey Otero, associate director of social innovation at Marquette. “This particular program has encouraged more organizations to talk about social innovation in Wisconsin and identify as social entrepreneurs than ever before – and that’s a great shift to see.”

Applications are being accepted online now through Sept. 15, 2019. After Oct. 1, select applicants will be invited to advance to a second phase of the competition, and a panel of expert judges from the public, private and academic sectors as well as investors and granting organizations will review each of the final applications.

At least six awards of $10,000 will be distributed to winning organizations during this year’s competition to recognize innovative models for solving complex problems across the state.

“Over the past few years, this program has identified some great examples of social entrepreneurship across the state and we are excited to see who emerges this time around,” said Laura Heisler of WARF. “The winners will demonstrate an innovative approach to solving a significant social challenge in Wisconsin and articulate a vision for lasting, positive impact.”

Similar to last year, the program will culminate with a daylong event, Nov. 15, at Lambeau Field in Green Bay. During the event, attendees will hear from inspiring speakers and the award winners will be announced.

Marquette University and WARF are heading the competition in conjunction with American Family Insurance, Ashoka, Promega Corporation, StartingBlock Madison, J.J. Keller Foundation, gener8tor, St. Norbert College, Fox Valley Technical College Venture Center, U.S. Venture, Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council, Wisconsin Technology Council and WiSys Technology Foundation.

For more information or to apply, visit warf.org/PositiveChange.

Contact Heisler at (608) 316-4392 or Otero at (414) 288-4990 with questions.

The Force for Positive Change Award Competition is sponsored by Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation and Marquette University. Entries will be judged by a panel of judges selected by the sponsors. The odds of winning depend on the number and quality of entries received. No purchase necessary to enter. Void where prohibited. For full official rules visit warf.org/PositiveChange.

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