Spirit of Innovation is Oct. 21: Meet Our 2020 Finalists + Speaker Arlan Hamilton

By Chattanooga Chamber

Innovation is the lifeblood of entrepreneurship and best business practices. It's also part of why Chattanooga is an amazing place to live, work and play.

The Spirit of Innovation Awards recognize local companies who are changing the game. The event is part of our community's Startup Week.  

Join us virtually on Wednesday, Oct. 21 from 7 to 8 p.m. to celebrate our Spirit of Innovation Award finalists, honor an award recipient and hear from keynote speaker Arlan Hamilton. Hamilton is the Founder and Managing Partner of Backstage Capital, a venture capital firm she built from the ground up while homeless.  

The firm is dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women and/or LGBT. She is also co-founder of Backstage Studio, which launched a four-city accelerator program in 2018. Hamilton has been featured on the cover of Fast Company magazine as the first Black woman non-celebrity to do so, and is the author of “It’s About Damn Time” and host of the weekly podcast Your First Million. Hamilton and her mother, Earline Butler-Sims, announced their scholarship program which kicked-off with scholarships for Black students at Oxford University and HBCU Dillard University.

Learn more about Hamilton here

In the meantime, get to know our innovative finalist companies:

Text Request

Text Request helps businesses increase profits through powerful text messaging software. Learn more about them here

Landrace Bioscience

Landrace Bioscience is a consultative manufacturer of high-quality hemp extracts, aiming to produce the highest-grade products containing consistent, unique, effective cannabinoid profiles. Learn more about them here


Trekka's performance apparel is made to go everywhere and do everything. Learn more about them here