Northern Illinois Food Bank's My Pantry Express program top finalist in Chicago Innovation Awards
Out of 450 nominees, Northern Illinois Food Bank with headquarters in Geneva, Illinois, has been selected as one of the Top 100 Finalists still in the running for the 18th annual Chicago Innovation Awards for its groundbreaking My Pantry Express Online Food Pantry program.
The awards celebrate the most innovative new products and services in the Chicago region across all organization sizes, sectors and industries.
Nearly 1,500 people will be in attendance to honor the winners when they are announced on Oct. 28 at Chicago's Harris Theater.
My Pantry Express reduces barriers for food insecure neighbors to receive help. The program offers private online food shopping and local pickup at convenient locations and times.
Northern Illinois Food Bank is the first food bank to offer this service.
MPX creates simple, easy access to nutritious food at no cost for food insecure neighbors. The program connects the overabundance of food with areas of need, providing an added level of food availability and choice.
Seventy-four percent of food-insecure people participating in MPX reported being able to keep up with paying their bills on time and making fewer tough choices.
For more information, visit www.solvehungertoday.org/MPX.
"The Top 100 Finalists of the Chicago Innovation Awards prove that innovation is surging in the Chicago region," said Tom Kuczmarski, co-founder of Chicago Innovation. "This year's nominees generated over $13 billion in new revenues, created over 10,000 new jobs and filed for over 1,000 patents. They are some of the fastest growing organizations in the upper Midwest and we are proud to celebrate them."
As one of the Top 100 Finalists, Northern Illinois Food Bank received a $2,500 scholarship to attend The Practical Innovator, a daylong executive education course which was held Sept. 26, led by top faculty who teach innovation at Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management.
Each of the Top 100 Finalists are also in the running for the annual "People's Choice Award," selected through online balloting at www.solvehungertoday.org/vote. The last day to submit your vote is Tuesday, Oct. 15.
Out of the Top 100 Finalists, the judges will select 10 winners of the Chicago Innovation Awards, as well as 10 winners of the Up-and-Comer Awards representing innovation in the startup community, the Social Innovator Award, the Collaboration Award, Corporate Innovator Award and three Chicago Neighborhood Award winners, which will showcase innovation occurring in Chicago's diverse neighborhoods.
The winners will be invited to ring the Nasdaq Bell in New York City, invited to separate meetings with the Chicago mayor, Illinois governor and Cook County president, and receive widespread media recognition.