The 2014 MassChallenge Awards featured some of the biggest entrepreneurs from around the world. In attendance were Uber CEO Travis Kalanick, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, and Cascade Communications Founder Desh Deshpande. Perhaps the most inspiring entrepreneur of the evening was EforAll Accelerator Alumna Mickey Cockrell of Catie’s Closet. Her Dracut-based venture, which provides clothing and basic necessities to students living in poverty, was awarded as a $100K grand prize. Out of 128 finalists who took part in the largest startup accelerator in the world, only four (including Mickey) were awarded the prizes. In dramatic fashion, Mickey was the very last entrepreneur to be called up for an award. As soon as her name was called, EforAll staff, mentors, and fellow accelerator finalists in attendance screamed in excitement. Just one year ago Brenna Schneider of 99Degrees Custom (2013 Winter EforAll Alumna) was one of the top $100K grand prize winners at the 2013 MassChallenge Awards.
Mickey first engaged with EforAll last October when she won second place at our 2013 All Ideas Pitch Contest. She then went on to participate in our 2014 Winter Accelerator and ended up being the program’s top winner.
“My participation in the EforAll Accelerator Program was invaluable,” said Mickey Cockrell. “It provided the building blocks I needed to put a solid infrastructure in place in order to scale the business. I received incredible exposure and mentorship which placed me ahead of the pack at MassChallenge. I was much better prepared to take Catie’s Closet to the next level.”
To date, Catie’s Closet has served over 12,000 students in Lowell, Hudson (NH), and Nashua (NH). By next year, they have a goal of serving over 50,000 students.