Dave and Carolyn Cleveland Present the Minnesota Cup
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Welcome to the Minnesota Cup

Social Entrepreneur Division

The Social Entrepreneur Division of the Minnesota Cup seeks out, supports, and celebrates Minnesota's most innovative and effective social entrepreneurs and the organizations they lead. To be eligible to enter the Social Entrepreneur division, the organization's primary purpose must be a social mission, rather than generating a profit. If your organization's aim is to have an impact on the critical challenges facing our society including education, environmental sustainability, health and economic & social equity, this division is for you.

Social Entrepreneur Division Supported by:

  • Clifton Larson Allen

Awards and Benefits Include:

Social Entrepreneur Division Winner:

  • $20,000 general operating grant for capacity building
  • Opportunity to compete against six other Minnesota Cup division winners for the grand prize
  • Professionally produced and edited video of final pitch at Grand Prize judging round courtesy of TECHdotMN 
  • Scholarship to the Minnesota High Tech Association's Annual Minnesota Venture & Finance Conference

Social Entrepreneur Division Runner Up:

  • $5,000 general operating grant

All finalists:

  • Featured in a supplement that is included with the December issue of Twin Cities Business magazine. 
  • Division Finalist Training - "Winning Investment Presentations" by Spoken Impact.
  • The opportunity to present their plan to a review board of esteemed business leaders.
  • An invitation to attend a semi-finalist reception at the Carlson School of Management.

All entrants:

  • Opportunity to learn about resources available to entrepreneurs and attend events organized/promoted by the Minnesota Cup.
  • Networking with Minnesota Cup supporting partners and other entrepreneurs.
  • A chance to improve the entrepreneur’s pitch given the required elements of the initial entry, which also represent a basic outline for a business plan.
  • A valuable experience that will help all entrants as they work on their ventures.

Review Board for Social Entrepreneur Division:

  • Ben Aase – Ben Aase, Principal, CliftonLarsonAllen LLP
  • Judy Alnes – Executive Director. MAP for Nonprofits
  • Terri Barrerio – Director, Donald McNeely Center for Entrepreneurship, St. John’s University
  • Jacquie Berglund – Founder & CEO, FINNEGANS, Inc.
  • Jim Delaney – Founder & CEO, Engine for Good
  • Reynolds-Anthony Harris – Managing Director, Lyceum Partners + design
  • Trista Harris – Executive Director, Headwaters Foundation for Social Justice
  • Sean Kershaw – President, Citizens League
  • Pamela Langseth – Executive Director, Social Venture Partners
  • Kari Niedfeldt-Thomas – Foundation Manager, Social Responsibility, The Mosaic Company
  • Fred Rose – Co-founder & Director, Acara
  • Mary Rick – Director of Sales, Peace Coffee; Board of Directors, MN Social Impact Center
  • Connie Rutledge – Associate Director of the Carlson Ventures Enterprise, University of Minnesota
  • Jeff Tollefson – Executive Director, Genesys Works



  • Magnet 360
  • Leonard, Street and Deinard
  • UnitedHealth Group
  • Mosaic
  • Mojo Minnesota
  • General Mills
  • MHTA
  • The Collaborative
  • MVCA
  • Spoken Impact
  • Startec
  • Messerli and Kramer
  • TECHdotMN
  • Split Rock Partners
  • Eide Bailly
  • Fredrikson Byron
  • Gray Plant Mooty
  • Twin Cities Business
  • Haberman Associates
  • Kenyon
  • lurie Besikof lapidus
  • Maslon
  • Positively Minnesota
  • Proto Labs
  • Clean Tech Open
  • Gopher Angels
  • AURI
  • Division of Energy Resources - Minnesota Department of Commerce
  • Digital River
  • 301 Inc. Emerging Brand Elevator
  • Stoel Rives LLP
  • SixSpeed
  • Grain Millers
  • Cafe Inc.
  • Clifton Larson Allen
  • Treehouse Health