The 2018 Entry Period runs June 1 through July 20. While self-nominations by innovators (companies, entities, individuals) are preferred, third-party nominations are welcome. Entries will be judged on novelty, market need, economic impact and disruption.

Entries must be submitted via the online form (coming soon), hosted by the Sacramento Business Journal

  • The innovation must be created or a primary portion of the work on the innovation must have been performed by a Sacramento-region entity. Sacramento-region is defined as Butte, El Dorado, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Solano, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba counties.
  • The innovation must have been recently developed. Because many innovations do not have a clear-cut beginning or end in its evolution, the organizers have chosen not to set a definitive timeframe on the entry’s creation.
  • Innovations from academic entities must be in/near the commercialization stage.
  • Submissions must include company/entity logo and a photo of the innovation or innovating team. Supplemental materials are encouraged and welcomed, such as marketing brochures, news articles, diagrams and client testimonials.

2017 Award Categories:

  • ADVANCED MANUFACTURING (utilizes advanced systems for information management, robotics, and workplace organization)
  • MEDICAL & HEALTH (devices, drugs, diagnostics, medical IT products, etc.)
  • SOFTWARE (consumer/enterprise, social media, apps, gaming, cloud, big data)
  • SUSTAINABILITY (including clean technology, energy, water, climate change adaptation, green building)

2017 Selection Committee (subject to change)


Steve Mills, Partner, DCA Capital Partners
Tracy Saville, Co-Founder & Director, FourthWave; CIO, The Disruptive Factory
Gino DiCaro, VP of Communications, California Manufacturing & Technology Association (CMTA)
Tony Lopez, Vice President of Operations, Pride Industries
Louis Stewart, Chief Innovation Officer, MOFIE, City of Sacramento
Mark Haney, Chief Dreaming Officer, HaneyBiz
John Krueger, Executive VP, Greater Sacramento Economic Council
Jordan Darling, CEO, Free Form Factory [2016 WINNER]
Tom Henry, Partner, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]


Kristy Levings, Director, AgStart
Joe Schmidt, Senior VP Business Development & Strategy, BioConsortia, Inc.
Julie Morris, Director of Technology Innovation, World Food Center at UC Davis
Trish Kelley, Senior Vice President, Valley Vision
Helen Singmaster, General Counsel, Raley’s
Ryan Sharp, Associate Director, Venture Catalyst, UC Davis
Ashish Malik, CEO, Bee Vectoring Technologies International, Inc.
Parastoo Yaghmaee, Ph.D., VP of Process Solutions & Validations, Ziel Process Solutions, LLC
Melissa Jones, Office Managing Partner, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]


Harry Laswell, CEO, Powerhouse Science Center
Binda Mangat, President/CEO, Quorum Technologies, Inc.
Amit Gattani, Senior Director of Segment Marketing, Embedded Solutions Group, Micron Technology, Inc.
Norman White, Senior Attorney, Intel
Robb Moore, CEO, ioSafe
Tim Keller, Founder, Inventopia
Philip Wang, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]


Robert Groth, VP Program Development, Social Interest Solutions
John Mesic, M.D., Physician Executive, Sutter Health Valley Area
Cary Adams, JD, CEO, MedForce Accelerator / Almond Tree Capital
Warren Smith, Ph.D., Professor, Electrical & Electronic Engineering Department, California State University, Sacramento
Simon Cherry, Ph.D., Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, University of California, Davis
Chris Wood, Senior Director, Mercy Neurological Institute , Dignity Health
Chris Gresens, M.D., Senior Medical Director and Vice President of Global Medicine , BloodSource
Dushyant Pathak, Assoc. Vice Chancellor, Office of Research, ED Venture Catalyst, UC Davis
Meg Arnold, Managing Director, Valley Vision
Matt Phillips, Director of Business Development, StemExpress
Tracy Shafizadeh, Ph.D., Director of Scientific Communications, Evolve BioSystems [2016 WINNER]
Matt Bethards, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]


Roger Akers, Managing Partner, Akers Capital LLC
Laura Good, Cofounder, StartupSac
Vaibhav Nadgauda, Partner, Moneta Ventures
Corley Phillips, Director, Sacramento Entrepreneurship Academy
Kim Box, President & CEO at Gatekeeper Innovation, Inc.
John Peters, Angel Investor
Justin Boatman, VP of Marketing & Communications, Riskalyze [2016 WINNER]
Sylvia Arostegui, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]


Gary Simon, Chairman, CleanStart, Inc.
Nicole England, Teichert Construction
Bill Boyce, SMUD
Aaron Anderson, Principal, Impact Venture Capital
Dave Sanders, WorldBridge Partners
Rob White, Chief Strategist, Sierra Energy [2016 WINNER]
Chris Russell, Partner, Stoel Rives LLP [non-voting liaison]