WDM Chamber Announces 10 Finalists for Pitch Competition

WEST DES MONES, IA (TUESDAY, April 5, 2022) – The West Des Moines Chamber of Commerce (WDM Chamber) has identified the 10 finalists that will be competing for part of the $40,000+ grand prize at the Athene Black & Brown Business Summit (Athene Summit) pitch competition. Funds were raised through the generous support of the Athene Summit sponsors, George Herrera, the keynote speaker from the 2021 Summit and Travel & Leisure. The Athene Summit is brought to you by exclusive pitch competition partner Bank of America.

With 45 total applicants, finalists were selected by a panel of judges based on components of their application including a one-minute video “pitching” their company. Those 10 finalists include:

  • A Little Buzzed
  • Autistic & Loved, LLC
  • Dae-licious Delights
  • Dupee Consulting Group LLC
  • Evry Intention LLC
  • Iowa Media Co.
  • Light Pong
  • Lumena Energy Inc.
  • Mountain High Jz Coffee LLC
  • Stagerie, Inc.
“Bank of America is committed to helping launch success for Iowans, and the Black & Brown Business Summit creates a unique opportunity for our community’s minority-owned businesses,” said Annie Brandt, senior vice president, market executive, Bank of America Iowa. “We look forward to continuing our partnership with the West Des Moines Chamber through this outstanding resource benefitting area entrepreneurs.”

All applicants to the Athene Summit pitch competition are invited to attend workshops throughout the day on Thursday, April 21. Programming includes panels on business success, mentor roundtables and workshops, one of which will be facilitated by Erik Dominguez, a competitor from the 2021 pitch competition.

"The Black & Brown Business Summit was one of the highlights of my professional career giving me the opportunity to share my story and my goals with others and being supported in my mission,” said Dominguez. “I am honored and excited to be back this year as a speaker to encourage and empower other entrepreneurs to feel confident and excited about pitching their business and showcasing their talents to our community!"

The pitch competition will be held on Thursday, April 21 from 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. at Athene. Attendance in person is invitation only, but the competition will be available to view via livestream. Purchase tickets to the Athene Summit here. The pitch competition will be judged by a panel of esteemed business professionals and the winner will be announced the following day of the Athene Summit from 2 p.m. – 3 p.m. Learn more about the event here.

About the WDM Chamber of Commerce
The mission of the West Des Moines Chamber of Commerce is to champion all things West Des Moines by strengthening our area companies, providing personalized resources and attracting a top workforce to position WDM as the best suburban city in America. Learn more about the chamber and how to get involved at
About the Athene Black & Brown Business Summit
The Athene Black & Brown Business Summit was created by national stakeholders to elevate ethnic minorities and bring BIPOC businesses together to assist with connection building, programming, promotion, training, and to provide resources to help businesses grow and prosper. The goal of the Summit is to help advance the minority business community across the country and position Iowa as the best place in the nation to start and lead a minority business. Learn more about the Summit on April 21 and April 22, 2022 at

Bank of America
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