Entrepreneurs at KCKCC Innovation Summit hear from successful startup CEO

Toby Rush, CEO of EyeVerify, gave the keynote address at the third annual Innovation Summit. The summit is held by Kansas City Kansas Community College. (KCKCC photo)

by Kelly Rogge

The 3rd Annual Kansas City Kansas Community College Innovation Summit took place April 4 on the KCKCC campus.

The keynote speaker, Toby Rush, CEO of EyeVerify, captivated the audience by telling his story about the growth of his startup businesses.

Approximately 325 people attended throughout the event and interacted with entrepreneurs in both high school and general categories.

Twelve high school representatives from Blue Valley, Basehor, Shawnee Mission and Wyandotte as well as a home school student offered creative innovations in sporting and medical equipment, drone technology, IT, pet grooming and more. Twelve adult representatives offered innovations in medical devices, recreational equipment, culinary arts, IT, safety and other areas.

Participants voted, using fake money, on exhibits which had the highest potential. While the “votes” were counted, a panel of successful entrepreneurs including Joyce Williams (beauty products), Joey Soto (coffee sales) and Edgar Galicia (printing and graphic design) provided highlights of their entrepreneurial journey. A luncheon address was delivered by Kansas City, Kan., Mayor Mark Holland.

Six finalists in each category competed with their three-minute pitch in front of the judges. The judges included expert bankers, entrepreneurs, manufacturers, educators, and investors. In the general category, the first place prize of $2,500 went to Kristen and Katelin Karlin with Ship and Dip. Second place went to Charlie Chick with Flame Shield. Third place went to Greg Hardin with Awesome Mascot Media. The winner of the People’s Choice Awards was Nick and Nadine Civitello with the Intoxicator.

In the high school category, first place award of $2,500 went to Natlie Cabell with Dove Glove. Second place went to Kaitlyn Kotterman and Catie Dunn with Serve it LLC, and third place went to Caleb Moser with Mint Mug. The People’s Choice recipient was Kotterman and Dunn with Serve It LLC.

The Innovation Summit, originated by Kansas City Kansas Community College Workforce Development, is successful, due to a large amount of community support through sponsors and partners. State Street Bank served as the Platinum Sponsor with $10,000 of prize money. The University of Missouri-Kansas City sponsored the breakfast. Other financial sponsors included Youth Entrepreneurs, Unified Government of Wyandotte County, the Wyandotte Economic Development Council, Kansas Small Business Development Center, KCSourceLink, KCK Chamber, KCK Women’s Chamber, Sam’s Club and Emporia State University-KC.

Summit partners who helped with planning and execution included the Women’s Business Center, Unified Government, SCORE, the KCK Black Chamber, Leavenworth County Development Council, EyeVerify, Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Central Avenue Betterment Association.

The KCKCC Workforce Development Team is considering expanding the 2015 Summit to include additional pitch competitions by summit winners at regional and national contests.

For more information, call 913-288-7284 or email Marisa Gray, business development liaison for Workforce Development at KCKCC, at mcgray@kckcc.edu.

Police hold meet-and-greet event with public

The Kansas City, Kan., Police Department recently held a meet-and-greet session with the public at Trinity Community Church hall, 5010 Parallel Parkway. (Photo by William Crum)

by William Crum

Recently, the Kansas City, Kan., Police Department held a meet-and-greet session at the Trinity Community Church, 5010 Parallel Parkway, Kansas City, Kan.

This event was designed for the public to meet local police officers.

By having these meet-and-greet sessions, this allows the public to interact with the Police Department.

The hoped-for result is that the public will feel more comfortable with the Police Department, and that the Police Department may have extra eyes in the community, leading to a crime reduction.

Kansas City, Kan., Interim Police Chief Ellen Hanson recently met with the public at a meet-and-greet event held at the Trinity Community Church hall, 5010 Parallel Parkway. (Photo by William Crum)

One-Act Play Festival being performed this weekend at KCKCC

by Kelly Rogge

If you are in need of some theatrical entertainment, you do not have to go far.

The 2014 Kansas City Kansas Community College Student One-Act Play Festival will be presented Friday and Saturday.

This year’s festival is offering a retelling of three favorite scripts from years past. In “MajorDomo,” by Chris Wilson and David Ruis, an estranged husband and wife attempt to reconcile in the arena of slam poetry set in a smokey jazz club. “Marked,” by Hiram Williams, is a tribute to the film noir world of detectives, missing diamonds and dames. Finally, “In Case of Zombies” by Brian Ramsay, focuses on a cabin in the woods where five students think they are all set for a weekend of camping and fun.

Evening performances of the plays are at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the KCKCC Performing Arts Center, 7250 State Ave. There is also a matinee performance at 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 13.

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for non KCKCC Students and senior citizens. KCKCC students, faculty and staff can get free admission by showing a KCKCC ID card at the door.

This is an evening of adult-type fare. Strong language and adult language are included in these one-act plays. This is not a good event for children, according to the event organizers.

For more information, call Charles Leader at 913-288-7106 or send an email to cleader@kckcc.edu.