Grind + Growth – a nonprofit economic development organization focusing on minority business ownership – recently named Gwen Logan-Craig as the winner of its pitch competition that included a $10,000 grant as the grand prize. Logan-Craig founded M.V.T. Virtual Learning in the summer of 2020 to help children of early learning ages through elementary school create strategies to become successful lifelong learners. Her company focuses on establishing various learning environments to promote personalized tools and strong comprehension skills.
Second place winner Jajuana Patrick, owner of Eve Marie e-boutique received a $2,500 grant, and third place winner David Williams, owner of valet trash service Grab N Go Trash received a $1,000 grant.
Twelve men and women ranging in age from 16 to 44 participated in Grind + Growth’s first event. In addition to the prize money, all three winners will receive a wide variety of business consulting and education services from Grind + Growth plus six months of free co-working space at the nonprofit’s Tower Grove offices.
The 10-week competition consisted of workshops highlighting the realities and educational components of entrepreneurship. Sessions ranged from creating a business model to identifying a target audience. The virtual weekly sessions were led by Grind + Growth Executive Director Valerie Liddell and entrepreneur Vince Zadeh, founder of the Self-Made Foundation, which focuses on assisting entrepreneurs from low income communities.
“This first-time experience was an inspirational journey for all of our participants who have a business vision and want to make it a reality,” said Liddell. “We watched these individuals grow in terms of creating a comprehensive business model and then pitching their unique idea to a group of highly trained executives.” Liddell added that, “It was a very successful and enlightening process for all who joined us in this competition.”
Located at 3801 Connecticut St., Grind + Growth features co-working space for entrepreneurs, as well as provides resources and programs to promote minority entrepreneurship and financial skills. The nonprofit specializes in community revitalization, business incubation, and strengthening urban neighborhoods in the city of St. Louis. For more information, call (314) 553-9841 or visit Grind + Growth.