Christmas Business Competition Returns to Live Action in 2022

2022 James and Eileen Business Competition

2022 James and Eileen Christmas Business Competition winners Linh Dang ‘23TCB and Dante Colaiacovo ‘23TCB are flanked by James Christmas ‘70CBA, ’10HON.

April 13, 2022

After two years of operating virtually, the annual James and Eileen Christmas Business Plan Competition and Pitch Event returned to a live format on April 7, with 80 spectators in attendance.

This year's top honors and a prize of $5,000 went to Linh Dang and Dante Colaiacovo for Green Zone, a cannabis dispensary in New Jersey with expansion plans that include introducing vending machines over the next several years. The runner-up, with a prize of $2,000, was Alexandra Tannous for Boardroom Athlete, a program of events that enables student-athletes to meet employers and identify other opportunities. (Alexandra tested her plan recently at Carnesecca Arena on Student-Athlete Career Night). The third-place prize of $1,000 went to Jay Shah for his fee-based platform connecting musical artists and music services providers, NoLabel Music.

Harrison Harvey was the top pitch plan winner with MYLIST, a new model of managing social media, purchases, and socially responsible giving. The second-place pitch prize went to Asia McLoyd for Adulting, an application that provides students with life skills to help them plan for the future. The third-place pitch prizewinners were Avon Samuels and Carolina Evangelista for E-Grocery, a shopping service that delivers fresh groceries to students on campus.

A total of 31 15-page business plans were presented to a panel of 18 faculty reviewers. The 10 plans that emerged from that selection process were evaluated by: Competition sponsor James Christmas ‘70CBA, ’10HON, who served as a lead executive judge; Albert Bateh ‘16TCB, Founder and CEO of EZ-Net Hair Care; Carmine Gibaldi, ‘77C, ‘79MBA, Ed.D., Professor of Administration and Economics, The Lesley H. and William L. College of Professional Studies; Lucy Heckman ‘76C, ‘77MLS, MBA, Associate Professor, St. John’s University Libraries and Head of Reference; and the evening’s keynote speaker, Jorge Jorge ‘10TCB, ‘13MS, President of Lisa Management, Inc.

William D. Reisel, Ph.D., Professor of Management, serves as the entrepreneurship competition's director and coordinator.