Social Venture Partners awards $90K via reimagined Fast Pitch event

After postponing the event due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Social Venture Partners Cincinnati recently presented its reimagined Fast Pitch 2020 – The Virtual Edition. It was the organization’s first-ever online Fast Pitch event. 

As in past years, 12 local nonprofits shared three-minute presentations about the work they do and why it matters for a chance at cash and consulting prizes. This year, however, the pitches were delivered in an online broadcast. From Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, ticket holders viewed the videos and voted for their favorites. All proceeds from ticket sales went directly toward providing more than $90,000 in unrestricted grant money and consulting scholarships for all the finalists. 

Winners of juried categories: 

  • Grand Prize, $15,000, sponsored by Fifth Third Bank: Partnership for Innovation in Education 
  • Second Prize, $10,000, sponsored by Interact for Health: Girl’s Health Period 
  • Third Prize, $5,000, sponsored by Interact for Health: Brewhaus Bakery 

Though the event has concluded, the public can learn about these and other nonprofit finalists until midnight, Oct. 30. Visitors can view finalists’ pitches and donate to any organizations that inspire them.

Partnership for Innovation in Education 
Girl’s Health Period 
Brewhaus Bakery

“Fast Pitch is just one of the ways that Social Venture Partners Cincinnati supports our community to cultivate effective philanthropists, strengthen nonprofits and build collaborative relationships for social change,” said Carrie Johnson, SVP Cincinnati board chairperson. “Fast Pitch is not only effective, it’s a fun way to engage the community in philanthropy.” 

More winners: 

  • Audience Choice Award sponsored by Fuel Cincinnati, $2,500: Brewhaus Bakery 
  • VIP First Place Award sponsored by SVP, $1,000: Brewhaus Bakery 
  • VIP Second Place Award sponsored by SVP, $500: Cincinnati Youth Collaborative 
  • Cincinnati Cares Volunteer Engagement Award, $1,000: Cindependent Film Festival 
  • Merit Awards, $1,000: 
    • Boys Hope Girls Hope 
    • Cincinnati Youth Collaborative 
    • Cindependent Film Festival 
    • Lincoln Heights Outreach Inc. 
    • MedMentor 
    • Samaritan Car Care Clinic 
    • Social Circus 
    • Visually Impaired Preschool Services 
    • Your Store of the Queen City 
  • SVP Partner Pick Award, $500: Your Store of the Queen City 
  • SVP Partner Pick Award, $500: Samaritan Car Care Clinic 
  • Flywheel Social Enterprise Award, valued at $7,000: Brewhaus Bakery 
  • JPS Nonprofit Services Board Engagement Award, valued at $5,000: Cindependent Film Festival 
  • Training Award sponsored by Next Step Networking, valued at 5,000: Lincoln Heights Outreach Inc. 

All finalists based in Ohio also received a legal assessment valued at $1,200 from Pro Bono Partnership of Ohio, an efficiency assessment valued at $1,000 from OneSource Center for Nonprofit Excellence, and a Service Enterprise Diagnostic valued at $380 from Cincinnati Cares. 


  • Carrie Johnson, SVP
  • Kala Gibson, Fifth Third Bank
  • Julian Collins, Interact for Health
  • Alois Barreras, Fuel Cincinnati
  • Doug Bolton, Cincinnati Cares 

Using a technique borrowed from the venture capital and start-up communities, Fast Pitch is an eight-week nonprofit training program in storytelling. Nonprofits are matched with individual Social Venture Partners to practice, refine and hone their messages.

“While the training and award money are what first attracts nonprofits to Fast Pitch, participants tell us they really value the networking and connections they make through the process,” said Chris Shroat, SVP partner and Fast Pitch 2020 co-chairperson. 

Social Venture Partners is the only local funder that goes beyond giving money alone, pairing grant making with hands-on, in-depth coaching, training and guidance for nonprofits that want to help people reach their full potential. 

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