We hope you enjoy this monthly GO Topeka newsletter geared toward small businesses, entrepreneurs and startups. We'll provide all the local business-related news you need to know about upcoming events, opportunities and much more! To offer feedback or suggestions, contact GO Topeka's Laurie Pieper at
Global Entrepreneurship Week Events

Topeka's first Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) is coming up Nov. 14-18, and there are so many opportunities to take advantage of!

Get registered today for each of the events
going on throughout the week:
11/14 - Small Business Strategies for Success
11/15 - Entrepreneurial Mindset Panel Discussion & Workshop
11/16 - Women in Business Conference by the Kansas Chamber
11/16 - Opportunities in International Trade
11/17 - Washburn Entrepreneurs Showcase
11/18 - Boots to Business Reboot

Visit the website to learn more about each event as well as register for the different events!
Washburn University Pitch Contest
GO Topeka sponsored Washburn University's Pitch Contest on October 25th. Five finalists competed after two initial knock-out rounds.

Congratulations to Tonya Fisher, founder of Taperloc, a company leading the way in stylist combs for dreadlocs, and to all of the top contenders!

Winner ($8,000 prize): Tonya Fisher - Taperloc, a hairstyle tool for dreadlocks

2nd Place ($6,000 prize): Ben Kneisler - Bell K Farms, northeast Kansas chicken farming

3rd Place ($4,000 prize): Olivia DePew and Zach Yelland - Drink EZ, a combination of a breathalyzer and water bottle

4th Place ($2,000 prize): Daniel Archer - Debate Together, a service that connects experienced debaters with high school teams

5th Place ($1,000 prize): Keisheona Wilkins - Wheel Friends Club, a nonprofit organization for people with physical disabilities 

Best Freshman Knockout Round Entry ($1000 prize): Sean Hubbard - Creative Tactics Gaming, games for multiple audience levels with unique difficulty and stories

Top Washburn Tech. Knockout Round Entry ($2,500 prize): Charles VanCamp - Planana Chip, a sweet and salty banana/plantain snack company
Gearing Up for the New Athena Program

Are you or someone you know interested in building your professional leadership profile? Becoming Athena Leadership program is exactly what you need! Becoming Athena is a program designed for all women leaders or potential women leaders. Those who are developing as well as those women leaders who want to mature their level of leadership and/or who are interested in growing their leadership team.

Join us on December 7th at 11:30am - 1pm at GTP for an informational on what Becoming Athena is all about!

Register Today! Lunch will be provided, registration is required. $0
Innovation Angel Investor Showcase
Stephanie Moran, SVP of innovation for GO Topeka, and Lindsay Lebahn, program manager for Plug and Play Topeka, are excited to announce an Angel Investor Showcase, the first in a series of Innovation Showcase events. The event will feature Mid America Angels and local startup companies, who will discuss angel investing and the important role it plays in our local innovation ecosystem. Startups that are in the process of raising early-stage investments will also be pitching at the event. The Angel Investor Showcase is open to anyone interested in learning more about angel investing and how you can participate in the network. The event will be held Wednesday, Nov. 2 at Townsite 16 and will run from 5-8 p.m.
Shop Local, Shop Small

GO Topeka staff and the Small Business Council will be delivering Shop Local, Shop Small swag starting Nov. 9th - Shop Small promotion runs all year, but is especially emphasized around the holiday shopping season. Small Business Saturday occurs on Nov. 26th this year! Be on the lookout for more information about this year’s activities!

» Small Business Saturday Proclamation
Location: Leaping Llamas Date: 11/9 Time: 11am

For information about how to get involved, contact GO Topeka’s Laurie Pieper at
U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Council

Laurie Pieper, vp of entrepreneurship and small business, traveled to Washington, D.C., to advocate for small businesses as part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Small Business Council. The Council divided into teams to meet with staff from the Senate and the House of Representatives. Topics of interest and concern shared by the Council included workforce issues, economic questions, regulatory trends, frivolous law suits affecting some industries, free trade agreements, access to capital and innovation. Dr. Pieper represented our Topeka SBC and businesses and was able to share information about initiatives being advanced by GO Topeka and the GTP.
MWBD Pitch Contest

GO Topeka’s MWBD will be hosting their Pitch Contest November 4th with 8 finalists participating! Pitch coaching will take place the day before and winners will be announced after all the pitches have presented!
Small Business Council

The Small Business Council is a leadership group of area entrepreneurs dedicated to work with the support of GO Topeka to promote small business in Shawnee County and equip those businesses for success. GO Topeka empowers small business by relying on local business leaders to influence and shape the conversation about how best to support existing businesses, and assist those who wish to learn how they can grow. To learn more about the SBC or to get involved, contact or visit the website!
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