Prescott Bark Wins Pioneer Pitch.
Prescott Bark Wins Pioneer Pitch.
“I was so fortunate to have the opportunity to be involved from the beginning with several great community leaders in creating and building NACET/Moonshot,” said Bowen in a news release. “It is a prime example of what community collaboration can do to create a vision for building an entrepreneurial and startup community. This award reflects the work of many leaders and collaborators.”
Bowen has served Northern Arizona University as an associate vice president in the Office of the President, and as president and CEO of the Economic Collaborative of Northern Arizona (ECoNA); however, the Mission Control award honors his volunteer work and advocacy in advancing the mission of Moonshot at NACET.
“In Flagstaff, the NACET Moonshot 37,000-square-foot startup business incubator and accelerator space, built over the past 15 years, has been critical to building Flagstaff’s fast-growing bioscience, technology, medical products and software companies that are heading towards becoming major employers,” said Bowen. “Under the leadership of NACET Moonshot CEO Scott Hathcock, NACET Moonshot has become a statewide force operating incubators and programs in Phoenix, Tucson, Verde Valley and Winslow. The NACET Moonshot impact has grown wider, reaching other states like Nevada, Washington and more.”
The event celebrated entrepreneurs, innovators and trailblazers from Flagstaff and across the state.
Judges Choose Prescott Bark
In a “Shark Tank”-like competition before a packed ballroom of business and community leaders, Mike and Elaine O’Connor won the $10,000 cash prize, provided by APS, as the winners of the Pioneer Pitch Tour for their Prescott Bark project.
Elaine told Flagstaff Business News that they will use the award to acquire property and facilities to house between 80 to 120 dogs for boarding daycare, professional grooming and other premium dog care services. Prescott Bark plans include access to qualified veterinary services and a Bark Bus, which will pick up and deliver dogs.
Eventually, pet-sitting will be part of what the company will do, said O’Connor. Initially, staff size will include at least 20 full-time and part-time employees.
The O’Connors came up with the idea for Prescott Bark when they could not find facilities within the immediate area that could care for their two dogs without a long-standing reservation.
Moonshot Thinking Honored
Audience members had vote in the Pioneer Pitch competition and chose Ralph Milholland, founder of Mobil Recycling in Winslow, won the People’s Choice Award. Milholland started Mobil Recycling in an effort to reduce litter and recyclables ending up in landfills, waterways and roadsides.
The City of Flagstaff Economic Development Program presented Restoration Soils with the Innovative Waste and CDR Challenge Award. Katalyst Space Technologies and Grubcan took home the Moonshot Entrepreneur Award. Kenny Greene, founder of WAR2IN, received the Honorary 2022 Shoemaker Award. Robert Kellar, Ph.D., received the 2022 Shoemaker Award.
The evening also honored Flagstaff astronomer Carolyn Shoemaker for her “extraordinary moonshot thinking” and achievements in astrogeology. She was part of the three-person team – including her husband Gene, and astronomer David Levy – that discovered Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 before it crashed into Jupiter in 1994. Carolyn discovered hundreds of asteroids and at one time, held the record for finding the most comets, which was 32. FBN
By Ray Newton and Bonnie Stevens, FBN
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