Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards™ FAQ

Q. Who can be nominated for the awards?
A. The Spirit of Entrepreneurship Awards™ are open to any woman business owner in Santa Barbara and Ventura County, regardless of the size of her business.

Q. How can someone apply for the awards?
A. The nomination form is available on the Spirit of Entrepreneurship™ Foundation website and can be filled out online or printed out and mailed/faxed in. Go to www.soefoundation.org and click on the Nominations button for more information.

Q. What are the categories and how do I decide which one to enter?
A. The 2017 categories are:

• Agriculture/Wineries
• Emerging Business (1-3 yrs old)
• Green/Social Entrepreneur
• Health
• Hospitality/Tourism
• Media/Communication
• Nonprofit
• Professional Services*
• Retail
• Science/Technology • Wholesale/Manufacturing/Global Trade
*Open to any profession like accounting, legal, real estate, consulting, etc.

If you have been in business less than three years, you can enter the Emerging Business Category regardless of what type of business you have. Otherwise, select the business category that seems most logical. If you aren't sure, you may select multiple categories or just include that in your space for your business description or contact us at info@soefoundation.org or call 805-682-8380.

Q. Can I nominate myself or does someone else have to nominate me?
A. Either option is available. You can nominate yourself or someone else. All nominations will be considered. However, please only submit one form per nominee.

Q. How long are the nominations open?
A. Nominations are open until March 10, 2017. The nominations forms will be closed after that date.

Q. How will I know if someone nominates me? And what happens after that?
A. When someone is nominated she will be sent an application form to complete. This form has been designed with business specific criteria to assist the judges in accessing the nominees. The deadline for final application form submissions is March 15, 2017.

Q. Who will be doing the judging?
A. Our judges are successful women entrepreneurs who are not connected in any way with the Spirit of Entrepreneurship™ Foundation. None of the judges live in Santa Barbara or Ventura counties. Their selections will be made independently, based on the application and other supporting material each entrepreneur submits. It is important to fill out the form with all pertinent information because the judges will know nothing about you or your business except what you include in your application. All applications forms submitted will be treated as confidential and access to them will be strictly limited.

Q. Will the winners be notified ahead of time?
A. The top three nominees in each category will be notified in advance of the Spirit of Entrepreneurship™ Awards Event and will be invited to attend the Dinner. They will be recognized in press releases prior to the event and at the Awards. However, the actual winner in each category will be announced at the Awards Dinner, just like the Academy Awards. Only a very limited number of individuals will have that final information prior to its announcement.

Q. What will the winner receive?
A. Each award winner will receive:

Q. Is there a monetary award?
A. For the second year, The Spirit of Entrepreneurship™ Foundation, a 501(c)3 corporation, will be presenting the Successful Entrepreneurs Giving Back Award for which a special cash prize will be awarded to one of the winners who has been in business for five years or less. The money is being donated by successful entrepreneurs and they will choose the winner for the cash prize. Last year the award was for $10,000.

Further, any money raised by the SOE Awards directly over the cost of the event will be given in the form of seed money and scholarships to the student entrepreneurs who win the Scheinfeld Center's New Venture Challenge at both the collegiate and high school levels. This business pitch competition is open to students throughout Santa Barbara County.

Q. Why isn't the Rock Star: Life Achievement Category listed?
A. The Board of the Spirit of Entrepreneurship™ Foundation select the recipient of the Rock Star: Life Achievement Award. Past winners include Sara Miller McCune in 2016, Dorothy Largay in 2015, and Betty Hatch in 2014, all pioneering women entrepreneurs. The 2017 Rock Star Award winner will be announced the end of February.

For more information go to email info@soefoundation.org or call 805-682-8380