Innovation Challenge

The Innovation Challenge is an entrepreneurial pitch competition for Hudson Valley residents who have an established business less than 36 months old or a pre-venture startup looking to locate in Dutchess and seeking to gain knowledge, support and prizes to further develop their business.

Innovation Challenge 2019The much anticipated second Innovation Challenge has been announced! Join us, Wednesday, June 5th, 2019 at Locust Grove in Poughkeepsie, NY from 4:30-7pm where semi-finalists will compete in a live pitch event for an opportunity to win big prizes to support their startup including:

    • cash prizes
    • professional business services
    • research, marketing, and promotional guidance
    • networking opportunities
    • invitation to the 2019 Think Dutchess Business Excellence Awards

Your attendance will help a highly esteemed judging panel vote for the next business destined to disrupt an industry.  Leading up to the event, semi-finalists will receive mentoring and coaching from some of the most influential business minds in the Hudson Valley.

The Innovation Challenge would not be possible without the support of our sponsors and partners. Sponsorship opportunities are still available. Tickets are available now.

Purchase Your
Tickets Here!

Thank you to these event and prize package sponsors:


Leader Sponsors:


Innovation Challenge Leader Sponsor IBM


Central Hudson

Innovation Challenge Leader Sponsor Central Hudson

Advocate Sponsors

William A. Smith & Son Insurance

Innovation Challenge Advocate Sponsor


Our Event Partners


Innovation Challenge Partner SCORE of Dutchess County

Vassar College



Missed our inaugural event?  Watch the first live competition and check in with 2017 winners, Richard Romano of Screamin’ Onionz and Danny Gonzalez of Facticiti to learn what they gained from their experience and how the Innovation Challenge can change your business.


A premier business-led organization, Think Dutchess Alliance for Business brings together 10 agency partners creating a one-stop shop for your site selection, financing, incentives, permitting and advocacy, strategic planning and counseling, marketing and networking needs.