KeyBank’s Key4Women Program and SCORE Cleveland Announce Finalists for Women-Owned Business Pitch Contest in Ohio

Originally published at KeyBank ranked No. 23 on The Fair360, formerly DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2021.


KeyBank’s Key4Women program and SCORE Cleveland today announced 10 finalists have been selected to compete in a business pitch contest for women-owned businesses (WOBs) located in Northeast Ohio.

Selected from a pool of 243 applicants and judged by a panel of SCORE representatives, the finalists will compete in one of two categories, start-up business or existing business, with cash awards totaling $22,000. The grand prize winner will earn $10,000. Finalists include:

  • RooSense (Start-Up)
  • Dirty Laundry (Start-Up)
  • Diva de la Crème (Start-Up)
  • All Trades Tax Services (Start-Up)
  • The DREMR Company (Start-Up)
  • Emerald Direct Primary Care (Existing)
  • Carmels Executive Car Service (Existing)
  • Back Development (Existing)
  • Roughin It (Existing)
  • Active For Life (Existing)

“The SCORE Chapters of Northeast Ohio are proud to be working with women-owned small businesses across the region and are amazed by the quality and strength of the applications we received,” said Bob Cohen, Chairman, Cleveland Chapter, SCORE. “SCORE and Key4Women share a common mission of helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve success through education and mentorship. This contest offers two critical supports for participants: mentorship and capital.”

SCORE provided application support and mentorship to women-owned businesses throughout the application process. SCORE will also provide workshops and mentoring to the finalists to help them prepare their pitches.

“SCORE is such a valuable partner,” said Rachael Sampson, chair, Key4Women. “Women business owners and leaders positively impact our economy and communities in powerful ways every day, which is evident based on the strength and diversity of the applications we received. Key4Women and SCORE are committed and willing to help all those who submitted applications, finalists or not, achieve their visions and grow their businesses into thriving ventures.”

To be eligible, businesses were required to be 51 percent owned, controlled, operated and managed by a woman or women. They must also be headquartered in Ashtabula, Carroll, Cuyahoga, Erie, Geauga, Harrison, Holmes, Huron, Lake, Lorain, Medina, Portage, Stark, Summit, Tuscarawas or Wayne counties.

The finalists will present a 4-minute pitch and field questions for 6 minutes on October 7 at Cuyahoga Community College. The event, which is not open to the public, will be live-streamed by Cuyahoga Community College.

Final awards will be chosen by a panel of five judges, which will include 3 local women business owners and two KeyBank bankers. Criteria used to determine winners include the quality of the presentation, clarity of business vision and mission, the economic impact of the idea and the soundness of value proposition.