Entrepreneurship Banquet

The mission of the Entrepreneurship Initiative is to encourage entrepreneurial activity in the Pioneer Valley of Massachusetts by fostering an educational environment among participating colleges and universities that informs, supports, and inspires students, and by recognizing and awarding students who display entrepreneurial spirit.

The annual Grinspoon Awards Ceremony and Banquet is attended by over 400 people each year. It is a celebration of entrepreneurship with a focus on our students who have won awards for demonstrating entrepreneurial spirit. Individuals and teams exhibit their businesses and compete for additional prize money. 
Each year a keynote speaker tells their personal entrepreneurial story to an audience of college presidents, faculty, students and family members.

2018 Banquet

Wednesday, April 25, Log Cabin, Holyoke, MA
Keynote Speaker – Caroline Pam, Co-Owner, Kitchen Garden Farm
For more information on the Banquet, please email [email protected]

“I dare anyone who attends the Grinspoon Entrepreneurship Banquet to not walk away inspired by the creativity among our college students in the Valley.”

Eric Gouvin, Dean, Western New England School of Law, Grinspoon Advisory Committee


Additionally, the much-anticipated Live Elevator Pitch Competition takes place at this event.

Banquet Program
5:00-6:20pm Award Winners Business Exhibition
6:25pm Welcome & Introductions
6:45pm Community Bank Sponsored Elevator Pitch Competition
7:15pm Dinner
7:45pm Keynote Speaker - Caroline Pam, Founder of the Kitchen Garden Farm
8:20pm Award Ceremony
Entrepreneur Awards & Faculty Recognition; Announcement of Entrepreneur Exhibit Winners, Grinspoon Garvey & Young Alumni Award, and Elevator Pitch Winners

Keynote: Caroline Pam

Co-Founder, Kitchen Garden Farm

Caroline Pam owns and operates Kitchen Garden Farm in Sunderland, MA with her husband Tim Wilcox. Starting with one acre in 2006, they have expanded to a 50-acre certified organic vegetable farm. They deliver to some of the best restaurants and retailers in the Northeast and also make award-winning sriracha and salsa. Each September the farm hosts Chilifest, an annual hot pepper festival.

A native New Yorker, Caroline earned her BA degree from the University of Chicago. While working as a journalist, she discovered her true passion for food and farming and went on to study French cuisine at the French Culinary Institute. Later, as a market manager at the Union Square Greenmarket in NYC, she shared her culinary enthusiasm by giving cooking demonstrations. She spent a summer working for an organic farm in Italy before moving to the Valley to apprentice at the Food Bank Farm. Combining her many talents, Caroline also writes a monthly column for the Daily Hampshire Gazette.

View the 2018 Banquet Photos




Annual Conference
Entrepreneurship Awards

Press Release


For more information please contact Cari Carpenter: [email protected] or 413-276-0831.

Participating Colleges

View the list