stARTup Competition | Arts and Education Council of St. Louis

stARTup Competition

The stARTup Competition, a partnership between the Arts and Education Council (A&E) and PNC Foundation, challenges individuals and organizations to “Change the World, through the Arts, in St. Louis!” One of only two of its kind in the country, this competition seeks to identify and foster robust, innovative, fresh approaches to addressing challenges or needs in the St. Louis region through the arts.

Benefits include:

  • stARTup Competition winners will receive free office, performance, rehearsal and meeting space for one year in the Centene Center for the Arts
  • Cash support from a pool of $20,000.
  • stARTups will have an official address at the Centene Center, networking and collaboration opportunities, access to WiFi, mentoring, financial coaching, idea sharing and be part of the Grand Center Arts District.

Review Process:

  • A panel made up of entrepreneurs and broad thinkers will review the application that describes the organization, business plan, the showcase/idea and how it meets the stARTup Competition Criteria and Rules. 
  • The panel is looking for potential. Make sure to clearly define your vision and potential impact in the community.
  • After the initial review the panel will select finalists to present their idea and a more in-depth business plan. Finalists will be given specific instructions and a timeline for their presentation.


  • Sheila Burkett, Spry Digital
  • Antionette Carroll, Creative Reaction Lab
  • Chris Dornfeld, Maritz Motivation Solutions
  • Jason Hall, Arch to Park Collaborative
  • Matt Homann, Filament
  • Debbie Marshall, PNC
  • Susan Stith, Express Scripts, Inc.
  • Amanda Wells, FLOW


  • February 15, 2018: Applications open
  • March 15, 2018: Applications close
  • mid April: Finalists announced 
  • May 3, 2018: Finalist presentations 
  • early June: stARTup winners announced 


Applications for the 2018 stARTup Competition are now closed. Have a question about your application? Contact Matthew Kerns. Finalists will be notified in April 2018. Click here to learn more about the 2017 winners.