As Consano has gone from an idea at a bbq with friends to a real, “live” start-up, I have had the opportunity to talk with so many amazing people. I’ve also been drinking A LOT of coffee (which is why it’s an advantage to be headquartered in Portland, Oregon!). Among the amazing people who have helped along this journey are Cindy Cooper and Jacen Greene of the Impact Entrepreneur group at Portland State University. When Cindy told me about the “Elevating Impact Summit,” I knew that Consano needed to be a part of it.

Our COO Kara and I had a great time chatting with a variety of people who were interested in seeing the social innovation happening in the start-up world in Portland. We got some great feedback about health categories people would like to see on the Consano platform and learned about the interesting things that others in our community are working on to make the world better. To say it was inspiring would be an understatement!

I also applied for the opportunity to pitch Consano to an audience filled with social entrepreneurs, investors and foundations and was selected as one of six companies to present. While I was definitely nervous (does public speaking ever get easier?!), getting up and sharing my story, the story of Consano and how we hope to give donors a transparent, directed and connected way to support medical research was exhilarating. The kind words and feedback after my presentation from attendees of the event was amazing and more gratifying than I can express.

And we ended up being selected by the audience to win the Pitch Fest! Thanks to a generous donation from Immix Law, we took home a cash prize and free legal services! The most exciting part of winning this for me was that we were selected by the audience — which means that they believe in what we’re doing at Consano! As we continue to build momentum, I am grateful every day for the people who have helped to make this dream possible. And I’m excited to continue to meet and work with people who are inspired to make things better. As I accepted the Pitch Fest award and looked around the packed Gerding Theater, I was so moved by the crowd, a group of people who are striving for a better world, all in one room. That is so powerful. Thanks again to Impact Entrepreneurs at PSU for putting this amazing group of people (and event!) together. Together, we are stronger.

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