Celebrating Innovation: Higher Purpose Co. in Collaboration with Innovate Mississippi’s Inspiring Pitch Competition

An Evening of Innovation and Inspiration
Last Friday, May 10th, we witnessed something truly special at the Jackson Medical Mall’s Community Meeting Room. Higher Purpose Co. teamed up with Innovate Mississippi to bring together a group of nearly 100 people who were eager to see the creativity and passion of Black innovators in action.

Dr. Shequite Johnson and Dr. Oni Omoregie led the charge, making sure everything ran smoothly. Dr. Omoregie shared his thoughts on the event: “I am so proud of every competitor in our pitch competition. They each worked so hard to show Mississippi the strength and capability of their organization.” He also added, “I am pretty happy with the success of the pitch competition. Mississippi has so many talented entrepreneurs. They just need a helping light to shine on them.” They emphasized the invaluable support from Higher Purpose Co.’s creative team, highlighting Ivory Cancer, Dewon Hall, and Tasha Rowe from Embellished Events for their exceptional work in creating a memorable atmosphere.

The event, partially funded by Innovate Mississippi Co-Builders, showcased the collaborative essence of innovation. Vendor Row consisted of fourteen vendors, organized by Shakira Wyms, Higher Purpose Co. Outreach Coordinator, displaying their unique products and services, each offering a glimpse into the diverse entrepreneurial talent within our community. Food and drinks were catered by Kimyata Champion of Kimyata’s Express Kitchen and Joyce Washington, owner of Joyce’s Tipsy Trailed Mixer.

The room buzzed with excitement as businesses shared their visions with conviction and enthusiasm. From tech startups to socially conscious initiatives, each pitch reflected the vibrant spirit of entrepreneurship. It wasn’t just about presentations; it was a celebration of innovation and dedication among Black entrepreneurs. Attendees didn’t just watch; they actively engaged with vendors, exchanged ideas, and built connections that extended beyond the event. The camaraderie and collaborative energy in the room embodied Higher Purpose Co.’s commitment to community support and empowerment.

Winners like Martin McCurtis of Quantum Flow, who took first place with a $5,000 prize, Ameka Coleman of Strands of Faith, who secured second place with $3,000, and Jasmine Hollinger of JKL Hair & Skin Care, who earned third place with $2,000, were rightfully celebrated. Their achievements showcased the power of vision and perseverance. As participants left, they carried newfound inspiration and a renewed drive to make a positive impact. The competition served as a catalyst for growth and success, aligning with Higher Purpose Co.’s mission to uplift and empower aspiring entrepreneurs.

This event truly exemplified community engagement and entrepreneurial spirit, drawing in nearly 100 individuals who left feeling inspired. As Dr. Clayton Barksdale, a pitch participant, wisely said, success isn’t just about winning but about the connections made along the way. The overwhelming response from the registered participants reflects a deep interest in nurturing innovative ideas and fostering connections. This success underscores the importance of collaboration and creativity in driving entrepreneurial progress.

Looking ahead, Dr. Johnson is optimistic about Higher Purpose Co.’s future impact and growth in empowering entrepreneurs to reach new heights of success and innovation. A big shout-out to all the entrepreneurs and businesses who participated, the attendees, and the supportive team at Jackson Medical Mall. Special thanks to George “Chuck” Patterson, a pitch participant, for the fantastic photos. Let’s keep shining bright, innovating, and inspiring change together!

Blog co-authored by:
Dr. Shequite Johnson & Dr. Oni Omoregie