Our Mission


The Chicago Innovation Awards continues to shine a bright light on the creative spirit of the Chicago region.

We focus attention on the most significant new products and services, regardless of sector or industry, introduced in the region.


We believe innovation is a process that can be taught and learned.

Our partners and community of past winners provide the knowledge transfer and intellectual capital needed to help today’s innovators turn their ideas into multi-million dollar companies and¬†successful models.


By connecting today’s innovators with the people and resources required to bring their innovation to scale, we lay the groundwork for relationships that enable these companies to grow in Chicago.

We’ve seen this build stronger companies and lead to economic impact and job creation for our region.

Chicago Innovation Foundation

The Chicago Innovation Awards program has grown rapidly from only a handful of entries to hundreds of nominations received annually.  This growth prompted the Board of Advisors and founders of the Chicago Innovation Awards to establish an educational foundation that will build on the energy, momentum, and creativity of the Innovation Awards and the Chicago-area innovation community.

Educating and Inspiring Today’s Innovators

We believe innovation is a process that can be taught and learned. The Chicago Innovation Awards Foundation hosts events throughout the year aimed at connecting today’s innovators with the knowledge, people, and resources required to bring their innovations to scale. We have seen this build stronger businesses and aid in the economic growth of our region.

The Practical Innovator

Kellogg School of Management
A day-long executive education course that teaches the practical skills of innovation to the top 75 nominees.
Media, Capital, & Talent

Museum of Broadcast Communications
Featuring talks by experts to help Chicago innovators capitalize on the ever-changing media landscape, gain access to capital, and attract talent.
Past Winners Showcase

Red Frog Events
Celebrating the rich history of Chicago innovation, a special panel is assembled featuring some of the most successful past winners of the Chicago Innovation Awards.

Accelerating the Growth of Tomorrow’s Innovators

Through partnerships with local universities, the Chicago Innovation Awards Foundation hosts innovation business plan competitions to help young innovators learn the practical skills of innovation, and provides financial assistance through scholarships to aid in their career and life pursuits.

Chicago Innovation Awards Foundation scholarship recipients and partners have included:

Chicago Booth
Junior Achievement
Goodman Theatre