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Veterans Win Big at Annual Vetrepreneurs Pitch Competition


The main event of the weekend included packed crowds and plenty of excitement, but it had nothing to do with football rivalries.


The Lab is back! Thursday night proved to be a great return to business as the Morris L. Hayhurst LaunchLab hosted its first pitch competition of the semester. 

An enthusiastic crowd of spectators joined a panel of five distinguished judges and five competitors at the LaunchLab as they participated in the 2023 annual Vetrepreneurs Pitch Competition, which aims to provide funding for veteran-owned startups.

Over $17,500 in funding was awarded at the event, making it one of the largest competitions held by the LaunchLab to date. 

The diverse group of judges included: West Virginia SBDC Business Coach, Frank Goldsborough; WVU Alumnus and Hayhurst Family Member, Jim Davis; Huntington National Bank Vice President, Melanie Thompson; Director of the Business Division for the West Virginia Secretary of State, Sarah Vankirk; WV Department of Agriculture, Veterans & Heroes, Program Manager Sierra Cox.

As for the contestants, the roster boasted: Chris Grimes of Mountain Cajun Getaway; Dustin Redden of LevelUp; Aryaunna Mosley of Musemo; Jason Cyr of Cycle Strategies LLC; John Rossana of Vet Owned Radon. 

Special thank you to emcee Jamie Summerlin for the energetic atmosphere he brought to the event and sustained throughout the evening.

Winners and award amounts:


John Rossana Vet Owned Radon - $10,000

Jason Cyr Cycle Strategies LLC - $5,000

Aryaunna Mosley Musemo - $2,000 photography package


John Rossana Vet Owned Radon - $500

Thank you to everyone who showed up to spectate and participate!

Applications are now open for our next competition, the LaunchLab Fall Pitch Competition. Head over to our Competitions page to apply!