#StartupScoop IdeaFunding Community Awards


Here we are with another #StartupScoop the best way to stay in the Startup loop! Today we are celebrating our community so join us at the ice cream social and bring your guest of choice! 


Each year, as a signature part of IdeaFunding, we celebrate the entrepreneurs who have created lasting legacies, are forging new paths, and contributing to the creation of a thriving economic hub in Southern Arizona.  They are named after giants of our community, Thomas R. Brown, Larry Hecker, and Sherry Hoskinson. 

For the first time ever, we are making a public call for nominations for the following awards: 

- Thomas R. Brown Outstanding Entrepreneur Award

- Thomas R. Brown Rising Star Award

- Larry Hecker and Sherry Hoskinson Lasting Community Builder Award

- Larry Hecker and Sherry Hoskinson Bright Futures Award


The Rising Star Award was established in 2018. The Thomas R. Brown Rising Star Award recognizes an individual entrepreneur who is in the early stages of business but is poised for future success and impact.


The Thomas R. Brown Award recognizes an individual entrepreneur for their commitment, innovation and economic contribution in Southern Arizona. The award honors the co-founder of Burr-Brown Corporation, Tom Brown. He and a friend, Page Burr, started the company in Brown’s garage in 1956, and shortly thereafter Brown bought out Burr’s interest and grew the company until 2000 when it was acquired by Texas Instruments. The sale was the largest in Arizona history. Burr-Brown was a precision electronics manufacturing company with sales almost exclusively outside of Arizona, and thus it contributed significantly to the economy of Arizona. Please note, this award is only given when a deserving candidate has been identified.


The Larry Hecker and Sherry Hoskinson Award recognizes an individual that has shown outstanding commitment and dedication to building the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Tucson, making a lasting impact as a community builder. The award is named for the combined efforts of attorney and community leader Larry Hecker and startup ecosystem builder Sherry Hoskinson, both part of the original founding team for IdeaFunding.


The Bright Futures Award was established in 2018 as a complementary award to the Larry Hecker and Sherry Hoskinson Lasting Community Builder Award. The Award recognizes an individual in the earlier part of their career that has already shown that they embody the same traits as those of the Lasting Community Building Award and is poised to continue to make an impact on our ecosystem moving forward.


Stephanie Bermudez, Winner of the Larry Hecker and Sherry Hoskinson Bright Futures Award 2018.

2019 Winner Best Nonprofit 

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