drum roll, please...
Houston Innovation Awards winners revealed at 2023 event
Who are the top innovators and startups in Houston? We just found out for you.
The Houston Innovation Awards honored over 50 finalists categories, naming the 12 winners at the event. The 2023 Trailblazer Award recipient, Brad Burke, managing director of the Rice Alliance for Technology and Entrepreneurship, was also honored at the event by inaugural winner, Barbara Burger.
The 2023 judges — who represent various industries and verticals in Houston — scored over 200 submissions. The event, hosted November 8 in partnership with Houston Exponential and emceed by Scott Gale, executive director of Halliburton Labs, revealed the winners.
The event's sponsors included Halliburton Labs, Microsoft, The Ion, Houston Community College, Houston Energy Transition Initiative, NOV, Tito's Handmade Vodka, Uncle Nearest Premium Whisky, 8th Wonder Brewery, and 8th Wonder Cannabis.
Without further adieu, here the winners from the 2023 Houston Innovation Awards.
BIPOC-Owned Business: Milkify
The winner of the BIPOC-Owned Business category, honoring an innovative company founded or co-founded by BIPOC representation, is Milkify, a service that turns breast milk into a shelf-stable powder.
Female-Owned Business: The Postage
The winner of the Female-Owned Business category, honoring an innovative company founded or co-founded by a woman, is The Postage, a comprehensive life planning and succession software platform for families and small businesses.
Hardtech Business: Syzygy Plasmonics
The winner of the Hardtech Business category, honoring an innovative company developing and commercializing a physical technology, is Syzygy Plasmonics, a deep decarbonization company that builds chemical reactors designed to use light instead of combustion to produce valuable chemicals like hydrogen and sustainable fuels.
Digital Solutions Business: RepeatMD
The winner of the Digital Solutions Business category, honoring an innovative company developing and programming a digital solution to a problem in an industry, is RepeatMD, software platform for customer loyalty, eCommerce, and fintech solutions to enhance the patient experience and provide a new source of revenue for the aesthetics and wellness space.
Social Impact Business: ALLY Energy
The winner of the Social Impact Business category, honoring an innovative company providing a solution that would enhance humanity or society in a significant way, is ALLY Energy, helping energy companies and climate startups find, develop, and retain great talent.
Sustainability Business: Fervo Energy
The winner of the Sustainability Business category, honoring an innovative company providing a solution within renewables, climatetech, clean energy, alternative materials, circular economy, and beyond, is Fervo Energy, leveraging proven oil and gas drilling technology to deliver 24/7 carbon-free geothermal energy.
Life Science Business: CellChorus
The winner of the Life Science Business category, honoring an innovative company within the health and medical industries designing a treatment or technology, is CellChorus, using AI to evaluate immune cell function and performance to improve the development and delivery of therapeutics.
Corporate of the Year: Houston Methodist
The winner of the Corporate of the Year category, honoring a corporation that supports startups and/or the Houston innovation community, Houston Methodist, a hospital system and health care innovation leader.
DEI Champion: Calicia Johnson
The winner of the DEI Champion, honoring an individual who is leading impactful diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives and progress within Houston and their organization, is Calicia Johnson, chair of Blacks at Microsoft Houston.
Ecosystem Builder: Joey Sanchez
The winner of the Ecosystem Builder category, honoring an individual who has acted as a leader in developing Houston’s startup ecosystem, is Joey Sanchez, founder of Cup of Joey and senior director of ecosystems at the Ion.
Mentor of the Year: Wade Pinder
The winner of the Mentor of the Year category, honoring an individual who dedicates their time and expertise to guide and support to budding entrepreneurs, is Wade Pinder, founder of Product Houston.
The winner of the People's Choice: Startup of the Year category, selected via an interactive voting portal during the event, is Blue People, helping bring ideas to life through software development expertise.
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