Print
Entrepreneurs

Meet The 2022 CEA Winners

By Vicky Janowski, posted May 6, 2022
Solar energy, hemp fiber, independent films, banking technology – these are just some of the industries represented in this year’s Coastal Entrepreneur Awards.

Despite their range in services and products, the common thread is the spirit of growth fueling each of the 11 companies and organizations tapped as CEA winners. Their wins were based on whether they are entrepreneurial and of those deemed entrepreneurial, which organizations were most likely to be financially successful (or for nonprofits, have the most impact). One of them will be chosen as the 2022 Coastal Entrepreneur of the Year later this month. Read more about the process and the category winners inside this issue.
 
Who would you invest $100,000 in?
 
That’s one of the pieces of advice we give our Coastal Entrepreneur Award judges each year when they’re faced with the task of making their picks. Who shows high-growth potential?
 
Who is making a name for themselves and cutting through the noise? Who, out of these stacks and stacks of nominations, do you see as entrepreneurial?
 
Our panel of outside judges deliberated and picked the 11 category winners in this year’s CEA process.
 
The winning companies represent fields ranging from tech startups to manufacturing to retail.
 
The nominations, submitted to the Greater Wilmington Business Journal from company employees, directors, clients and in some cases just outside admirers, represent a cross-section of the region’s business community.
 
The awards are a joint effort between the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIE) and the Business Journal to identify and recognize fast-growing organizations and businesses with the potential to make a significant impact on the region.
 
You can read more about the companies that rose to the top of their categories this year by following the links below.
 
One of them will be named the 2022 Coastal Entrepreneur of the Year. Keep an eye out on our website (WilmingtonBiz.com) and social media channels for the announcement of this year’s event to name the overall winner.
 
One thing that hasn’t changed over the years in the awards program is the Stanley Cup of Southeastern North Carolina entrepreneurship – the CEA surfboard.
 
This year’s Coastal Entrepreneur of the Year adopts the wooden surfboard – custom made by local nonprofit and former category winner Kids Making It – to proudly display at its office for the next year after it’s been passed down from a long line of successful companies that also have earned the title.
 
So jump in, find out this year’s category winners and send them a note of congrats.
 
Vicky Janowski, editor
Greater Wilmington Business Journal
[email protected]
(910) 343-8600, ext. 208
On Twitter: @vickyjanowski

Judging the Applicants

The Coastal Entrepreneur Awards (CEA) is run by the Greater Wilmington Business Journal and the UNCW Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
 
CEA’s goal is to shine a spotlight on up-and-coming companies, helping them make connections in the community as well as showcase the region’s entrepreneurial activity.
 
The competition involves two rounds of judging in which the applicants are judged on two criteria: Is the organization entrepreneurial? Of those that are entrepreneurial, which organization is most likely to be financially successful? For nonprofits, the standard is which is likely to have the most impact.
 
First, all the applications are evaluated by representatives of area business groups and the competition’s sponsors to determine the category winners. During the second round of evaluations with more detailed information, the judges select the Coastal Entrepreneur of the Year.

The judges were:

Rob Burrus, UNCW Cameron School of Business
Chakema Clinton-Quintana, Live Oak Bank
Jerry Coleman, Cape Fear Community College-Small Business Center
Katherine Daniel, Montani Consulting
Natalie English, Wilmington Chamber of Commerce
Dana Fisher, North Brunswick Chamber of Commerce
Justin Humphries, The Humphries Law Firm P.C.
Randall Johnson, N.C. Biotechnology Center, Southeastern Office
Andy Jones, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP
Heather McWhorter, UNCW CIE/SBTDC
Tammy Proctor, Pender County
Sara Raleigh, SCORE Cape Fear Region
April Scott, Brunswick Community College-Small Business Center
Jeffrey Stites, Southport-Oak Island Chamber of Commerce
Sarah Stone, Excite Credit Union
Jason Wheeler, Pathfinder Wealth Consulting

2022 Winners by Category:

2022 Chamber of Commerce Winners
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Headshotrosaliecalarco 1182131047

Beware of Social Media Scams

Ubs chadpearson headshotresized

The Three Dimensions Of Selling Your Business

Chad Pearson - UBS Decision Point Wealth Consulting
Cfss headshots parker robert webversion 21422121214

Can an HOA Deny Solar Panels?

Robert Parker - Cape Fear Solar Systems

Trending News

Galleria Property On Wrightsville Ave. Sold For $37.5M

Cece Nunn - Aug 10, 2022

Leland Town Center Lands New Tenant; Lowe’s Begins Construction

Johanna F. Still - Aug 10, 2022

Pipeline Poke Headed To Autumn Hall

Elizabeth White - Aug 10, 2022

Rachael Ray, Emeril Lagasse To Appear At GLOW Event

Justin Williams Pope - Aug 10, 2022

New Biz Creations In Cape Fear Region Continue Strong Trend

Johanna F. Still - Aug 9, 2022

In The Current Issue

Beach Equipment Rentals Sizzle

For some beachgoers, their perfect day is lazing on the shore, soaking up rays. For others, it’s water sports or maybe biking alongside the...


Schools Face Nursing Shortage Crises

The pandemic-induced havoc on hospitals around the country still ricochets across systems today. A dire trend accelerated and emerged: a sho...


Borrowers Seek Adjustable-rate Perks

During recent years when interest rates were at rock-bottom levels, borrowers have kept adjustable-rate mortgages at arm’s length. But now,...

Book On Business

The 2022 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

Trying to Grow a Business?
2020 Health Care Heroes
2020 WilmingtonBiz 100