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Volunteer Judges Evaluate

Team Presentations and their Written Business Plans

The Project ECHO High School Entrepreneurs' Business Plan Competition simulates the real-world process of entrepreneurs soliciting start-up funds from investors.  Judges participate on panels that will evaluate 7-10 presentations and act as venture capital investors deciding on which business they would most likely fund.  The quality of the idea, the strength of the management team, and the clarity and persuasiveness of the oral presentation are the criteria that determine each judge's decision.  The winning team in each of the three categories of the competition (products, services, and social enterprise) is decided based on where the judges would most likely invest their money.

Savvy entrepreneurs and business executives with at least 10 years of professional experience are encouraged to apply as Pitch Competition Judges.  Graduate students and younger executives are welcome to apply to evaluate written business plans.  Training is provided (and required) for both roles.

Individuals are also needed to assist with event day activities. Check out the Event Volunteer Form for more information.



The Business Plan Competition is scheduled for Sunday, April 21, 2024, starting at 8:30 AM.

We are proud to partner with California State University, Dominguez Hills, the host of this year's competition. 


  • Submit your Judge's Application, and be sure to include your LinkedIn profile link

  • Pitch Competition Judges will be asked to complete a mandatory background check. It's very appreciated if you pick up the small fee. 

  • Prior to the Competition, you'll be invited to meet our executive director, who likes to meet the judges prior to their meeting our teens. It's a terrific opportunity to share more about yourself, and learn about our program and event!

  • Judges will be asked to join the training to learn about the online judging platform, and rubric, and to get an idea of what to expect on competition day.

  • Judges are required to bring a personal laptop or tablet to the competition to complete online judging.

  • Please note that submission of an application does not guarantee placement as a judge.

  • A Judge's Newsletter will be emailed about three weeks prior to the event and will include everything you need to know to prepare for your role, including directions to the university, where to park, and what to wear. Since lunch will be provided, we'll also ask for any dietary restrictions.


It'll make you feel warm inside!  As a non-profit organization, Project ECHO is required to raise the funds it needs to offer our robust programs and events.  During the registration process, consider super-sizing your support of Project ECHO with a minimum donation of $250 and join the ranks of other VIP Judges. We're hoping for 100% participation! In return, you’ll receive a few extra perks, including:

1) Preferred selection of the competition category you'd like to evaluate (products, services, or social enterprise)

2) Half page ad published in the event program

3) Extended personal bio or add a company bio in the event program 

4) Engraved magnetic name badge that will include your name, company name, and previous judging years (if any).

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