Championship Round

Paul J. Holloway Prize celebrating 30 years

Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Come see six teams of top student entrepreneurs and innovators pitch their business plans to a panel of industry-leading judges for a chance to win the top prize of $15,000 in the 35th annual Paul J. Holloway Prize Competition.

 Guest RSVP not yet open

If you are unable to attend in person, you can watch the student pitches and ceremony via the Holloway live-stream.

2022 Schedule

1 p.m. Competition Opening
Room G75, Paul College Auditorium
Welcome by Holloway Competition Chair Andrew Earle

1:05 p.m. Judges Q&A with Student Entrepreneurs
Room G75, Paul College Auditorium
1:05 p.m. OuterPlace Runner up
1:32 p.m. Kicker Sticker 1st place
1:59 p.m. Grey-T Water Runner up
2:26 p.m. Break
3:00 p.m. Apropos Energy Runner up
3:27 p.m SideGuide 2nd place
3:55 p.m. Project Happy 3rd place

4:30 p.m. Celebratory Reception and Awards Ceremony
5:10 p.m. Winning Teams Announced and the
2022 Paul J. Holloway Entrepreneur of the Year will be awarded to
eCoast Angels Investment Network.



$15,000- 1st Place Team
$10,000- 2nd Place Team
$5,000- 3rd Place Team
$1,000- Runner-Up  Teams
$2,000- People's Choice Award Winner

Vote in the
People's Choice Award!

Vote for your favorite team to take home an extra $2,000! Make your vote count twice by also voting using an in-person ballot at the event.
Voting will close on May 10 at 4:45 p.m.


Apropos Energy
Apropos Energy is a software company that delivers open gaming platforms and online services for classroom learning that engage students and teachers alike. Our mission is to provide a suite of sandbox video games in the sciences that provide data-driven instruction for digital classroom curricula. Student users will engage with their education in an entertaining way and teachers will be equipped with a powerful resource to design custom minigames for assignments. Starting with our inaugural title Aproposlis, our games will enhance remote learning experiences, provide a unique way to assess student progress, and prepare players to tackle the world’s largest issues.  

Eli Duggan, CEPS (Hometown: Concord, NH)
Matt Libby, CEPS (Hometown: Bristol, NH)
Samuel Mercer, CEPS (Hometown: Sanford, ME)
Bailey Prasad, COLSA (Hometown: Glen Mills, PA)
Faculty Advisor: Ian Grant

Grey-t Water
Grey-t Water is a sustainable solution to water scarcity. The Grey-t Water system collects greywater from the drains of your sinks and showers, filters it, then redistributes it to your toilets to eliminate freshwater use.

Emily Abrusci, COLSA (Hometown: Henderson, NV)
Nathan Brennan, Paul College (Hometown: Arlington, MA)
Faculty Advisor: Ian Grant

Kicker Sticker
The Kicker Sticker is a soccer training tool for anyone who is looking to improve their kicking technique, but may not have access to affordable, quality coaching. It is a removable decal that is applied to the user’s own soccer ball. It helps the user learn and practice eight different kicking techniques by identifying the areas of ball contact and the correct kick execution techniques. Each area was determined by scientific research investigating the effects of impact location on ball aerodynamics and trajectory. The accompanied instruction sheet and training videos also outline many of the smaller but important details that affect the user’s kicking technique. This product is much more cost-effective for the user than personal trainers or the competing products, and it ensures that the user can continue to train with the familiarity of their own ball without having to compromise on the quality of their training.

Adison Hicks, CEPS (Hometown: Derry, NH)
Faculty Advisors: Ivaylo Nedyalkov and Viktoriya Staneva

Two key areas of improvement have echoed in discussions with prominent ski industry professionals on the ski resort experience. Mountain Resorts want to develop new revenue streams and increase customer satisfaction and retention. Determining where to implement new initiatives and changes is aided by better understanding your customers. Achieving this through data collection and discovering customer flow patterns is where we come in. 

OuterPlace expands on preexisting RFID technology allowing for greater data-collection and interpretation of customer tendencies on the slopes. Gates ping each time a user’s ski ticket passes by. Knowing when a user passes a slope-side gate can help determine customer flow and time spent throughout a specified location. Development of the OuterPlace system will allow our team to analyze and assist mountain resorts through data-driven decision making. 

The market will initially consist of mountains within New Hampshire through our business-to-business model, leading into New England and beyond. Resorts utilize RFID technology, interlinking ski passes, room keys, and POS systems. OuterPlace will aid in expanding this interlink onto the slopes. RFID technology is universal, therefore integration across multiple platforms is possible. With the ski industry growing year-over-year by 3.37%, OuterPlace is a natural opportunity for resort growth.

John Grace, Paul College (Hometown: Strafford, NH)
Jack LoRe, Paul College (Hometown: Niskayuna, NY)
Brendan Sullivan, Paul College (Hometown: Auburn, NH)
Faculty Advisor: Lisa Keslar

Project Happy
Project Happy is a revenue generating nonprofit technology startup on a mission to reconnect young people to their community, in an effort to help them live happier and more connected lives. Our first positive technology has successfully launched in pilot this month. The Project Happy Community Involvement Platform eliminates the barriers that discourage a student from community involvement and volunteering by simplifying & improving the student volunteering process. The long-term vision for Project Happy includes building a suite of complementary, technological solutions aimed at solving adolescent unhappiness/unfulfillment in American youth.

Gerry Donahue, CEPS (Hometown: Hopkinton, NH)
Nick Mokas, Paul College (Hometown: Bedford, NH)
Jack Potvin, Paul College (Hometown: Derry, NH)
Faculty Advisor: Ian Grant

Coding education typically focuses on toy problems in fake environments, making it easy to lose interest, not fully grasp concepts, or even give up. To remedy this we are building SideGuide, a coding course platform designed to help new devs learn and apply concepts at lightning speed. Our course platform and marketplace are built directly into development environments, providing an easy and efficient way to up-skill or train developers regardless of experience level.

Eric Ciarla, Paul College & COLA (Hometown: New Boston, NH)
Garrett Frohman ’21 (Hometown: Hudson, NH)
Caleb Peffer, CEPS (Salt Lake City, UT)
Nicolas Silberstein Camara ’21 (Hometown: São Paulo, Brazil)
Faculty Advisor: Ian Grant

Check back for complete judge bios. 

Moderator: Nick Lorden, MBA Student

Jude Blake '77, Marketing Executive & Philanthropist 
Judith E. (Jude) Blake, UNH ’77, has more than 40 years of experience in strategic marketing leadership in a variety of industries, including telecom/cable, beverages and packaged goods. Since 2005, she has served in advisory roles for a broad range of businesses, organizations, and start-up ventures, where she provides strategic direction on critical issues, marketing and growth strategies. 

Jude serves as the chair of the Dean’s Executive Advisory Board of the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics. She is on the advisory board of Northeast Passage at UNH and is also serving as the co-chair of the UNH Capital Campaign committee. She served on the board of the UNH Alumni Association from 2006-20019, as a trustee of the University System of New Hampshire from 2008-2016 and on the UNH Foundation Board from 2000-2006, and again during her term as a USNH Trustee. She is currently an advisor to the UNH Foundation Board.

Jude is known as a proactive and philanthropic community advocate, helping many non-profits with strategic thought leadership, governance issues and fundraising. She has served on many nonprofit boards from early in her career. Jude is currently on the Board of Trustees of the Music Hall, in Portsmouth, N.H.

Previously, Jude was the chief marketing officer and executive vice president of consumer markets, for Cablecom GmbH, in Zurich, Switzerland, vice president of marketing, programming, sales and service for Ameritech New Media, the cable television subsidiary of AT&T, and held executive marketing positions for General Mills, the Pepsi-Cola Company and the G. Heileman Brewing Company. She holds a bachelor’s degree from the Paul College of Business and Economics and holds an MBA in finance from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.

Jude lives in the heart of downtown Portsmouth. One of her greatest passions is mentoring UNH students.

Joe Faro '91, CEO, Tuscan Brands
With over 25 years of experience in the food & hospitality industry, Founder & CEO Joe Faro grew up appreciating the true artisan craftsmanship behind creating great food.

While he started working at his parent’s corner bakery as a child, it was at the University of New Hampshire that Joe's ambition surfaced. Deeply passionate about food and eager to put his entrepreneurial skills to use, Joe entered his concept for Joseph’s Gourmet Pasta and Sauces into the UNH Whittemore School’s Holloway Prize Competition, and won second place.  True to himself, Joe remained confident in his products’ potential to win over a quality conscious clientele. He spent long hours in the kitchen perfecting his pasta and sauce recipes, and set out to sell them to restaurants & hotels in the Boston area.
Over the next 18 years, Joe grew Joseph’s Gourmet Pasta and Sauces from a college business plan to over $75 million in revenue. In 2006, he sold the company to Buitoni, a division of Nestle’ Prepared Foods. After a brief retirement, Joe was onto his next project—Tuscan Kitchen and Market in Salem, N.H., a brand now recognized throughout New England for creating a true artisan Italian experience through regional scratch Italian cuisine. But that’s not all!  Tuscan Brands has since expanded into Burlington, Massachusetts, Portsmouth, N.H., Newburyport, Mass., and Boston’s Seaport District.
Joe’s love of creating doesn’t stop there. His newest development is the transformation of 170 acres in Salem, New Hampshire, formerly known as Rockingham Park. Joe’s “Tuscan Village” will transform the historic landmark into a 3 million square foot mixed use super regional destination right on Exit 1 in tax free Salem, New Hampshire. Joe’s vision is a true destination where people can “live, work, stay and play."

Tom Malkoski '78, Operating Partner, Arbor Investments 
Tom Malkoski is a transformational leader and advisor with a record of generating stakeholder value across public, private, and private equity ownership structures. Currently he is an operating partner for Arbor Investments, a Private Equity firm specializing in the Food, Beverage and Pet industries.

From 2017 to 2021 Tom served as CEO and chairman of the board of directors for Chaucer Foods, a global producer of freeze-dried ingredients for the Food & Beverage industry. During 2015 and 2016 he advised multiple Private Equity firms evaluating buyout opportunities. Tom led Penford Corporation from 2002 -2015 as CEO, president and a member of the board of directors, through a successful sale of the company to Ingredion. Penford, a public company, was a leading developer and manufacturer of specialty ingredients in global food, beverage, paper, packaging and biomaterials.

Prior to joining Penford, Tom served as president & CEO of Griffith Laboratories, North America (now Griffith Foods) from 1997 to 2021, CEO of Floral Plant Growers from 1996 to 1997, and vice president – Asia Pacific Region for Chiquita Brands from 1991 to 1995. Tom began his career at The Procter & Gamble Company from 1980 to 1991, progressing through brand and category management responsibilities.

Tom served as a board advisor from 2002 to 2016 with Libby Perszyk Kathman (LPK), a privately held world leader in brand strategy and design.  He received an MBA from The University of Michigan in 1980, and a BA in Economics from The University of New Hampshire in 1978.

Tom Moulton '77, President & CEO, Sleepnet
Tom Moulton is the consummate entrepreneur with over 40
years of experience in successfully founding, leading, and
growing companies. His business endeavors span a variety of
industries, including manufacturing, real estate development,
and construction.

Tom is presently the CEO and President of the Sleepnet
Corporation, based in Hampton, NH. Sleepnet is the designer
and manufacturer of masks used for sleep disordered breathing
and other ventilation needs. Using his patented AIRgel™ technology, the comfortable masks manufactured by Sleepnet help thousands of people around the world get a good night’s rest. More recently, Sleepnet developed an N95 respirator mask using the AIRgel™ technology, which was intended for use in the construction market. With the onset of the Coronavirus pandemic, Sleepnet’s reusable envo mask®, with its replaceable filter has protected hundreds of thousands of front-line workers across the globe. The company has expanded its manufacturing capacity in Hampton, NH and has grown exponentially over the past year.

Tom is also the President of De Niro Construction, a building contractor he founded in 1987 that provides commercial and residential construction services to customers throughout northern New England. The company’s services include design-build, development, construction management and general contracting. He used his expertise in this arena to rebuild his UNH fraternity, Sigma Beta, from the ground up in 2010.

An active real estate investor, Tom owns several commercial, residential, and mixed-use properties in southern New Hampshire. He was one of the founding partners of Planet Fitness, using his expertise in construction and real estate to develop and open the first four PF gyms. He also serves as a director of the board of the Northway Bank, headquartered in Berlin, NH and serving the Granite State. In 2021, Tom received the Paul J. Holloway Entrepreneur of the year award, as well as a New Hampshire Business Review Award of Excellence for small business manufacturing. He recently was the recipient of the Hampton Chamber of Commerce “Faith in the Future” Award.

Upon graduation from UNH in 1977 with a degree in Business Administration, Tom started his career working for the Fairview Machine Company, a family business that provided contract precision
manufacturing and assembly services to industry and government agencies. During this time, he served as the President of the Boston Chapter of the National Tool and Machining Association (NTMA) and as national committee chairman of various committees of the NTMA. After 10 years at Fairview Machine Company, ultimately serving as its President, he branched out to start a variety of businesses on his

Tom is a passionate philanthropist and active community advocate. He loves to play and coach hockey and was the Assistant Coach of the 2002 Gold Medal U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey team. He is also a board member of the NH Legends of Hockey. He has served on the board of the UNH CEO Forum at  Paul College and hired and mentored many younger UNH alums. 

Mike Pilot '84, Managing Director, SPUR Acquisitions
Mike is Managing Director of Spur Acquisitions, a private equity firm he cofounded to provide capital and leadership succession to small business owners seeking a liquidity event.

Prior to Spur, he spent 31 years at GE where he held several positions including chief commercial officer of GE Capital, president of sales and marketing at NBC Universal, president and CEO of GE Equipment Finance Group and president and CEO of GE Capital Small Business Finance.

Mike received a BS in Business Administration from UNH in 1984. He currently serves on the University System of New Hampshire board of trustees and on the dean’s advisory council at the Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics.

Meg Rotondo '11G, Vice President of Product Operations, Digimarc
Meg Rotondo is the vice president of product operations for Digimarc, a global leader in digital watermarking technology. Here she champions all aspects of operational efficiency and metrics-driven continuous improvement, as well as manages several international teams responsible for the on-time delivery of quality software.

Prior to Digimarc, Meg worked at Liberty Mutual Insurance where she was a global product manager with their Global Technology division.  In this role, she led scaled agile release trains to deliver a new cloud-based insurance ecosystem for the European and Asia-Pacific markets. She also held leadership roles in product portfolio management, digital transformation, product innovation, and global technical training & communications. She has extensive experience in developing strategic roadmaps and is passionate about helping teams build trust across cultures and time zones while delivering innovative products.

In addition to her professional work, Meg is dedicated to giving back to our community via non-profit endeavors. After years on the Southeast New Hampshire Habitat for Humanity Board of Directors, she co-founded Community Toolbox in 2013 with a mission to ensure that everyone has a safe and healthy home.  She is also active with the New England Chapter of the American Diabetes Association where she has been a Tour de Cure cycling team captain for the past 12 years.  She also gives her time as a Board Member with Community Chorus at South Berwick (Maine), a musical arts organization with a mission to help singers of all levels expand their musical knowledge.

Meg earned her Bachelor’s degree with a double major in mathematics and Italian language & literature from Binghamton University in New York, and her MBA from the University of New Hampshire, Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics.  She also studied abroad at the Università degli Studi di Urbino in Italy.  A perpetual learner at heart, Meg is currently taking graduate classes in organizational behavior at Harvard University.

eCoast Angels Investment Network

eCoast Angels Logo

eCoast Angels was founded in 2000 by 5 New Hampshire Seacoast entrepreneurs. From its start, the group had a vision of giving back to the community by investing in, and mentoring, entrepreneurs of early-stage start-up companies who were passionate about their company.

 In addition to investing money, the group believed offering entrepreneurs the experience, knowledge, networking capabilities, oversight, and interest in mentoring, of its members would be just as valuable as the money they invested. Since its inception, eCoast has grown to become the largest early-stage investment group in northern New England with 40+ members, and new members joining every month.  Since 2021, it has been a goal of eCoast to add more women investors to its membership and to invest in companies led by a diverse management team.   

 A key element in eCoast’s success is a willingness to support ‘our’ companies as they grow and the ability to fund later stage rounds when the capital needs are larger. Since its founding, eCoast Angel members and the regional network of investors it developed have invested more than $100 million in early-stage companies, and we are especially proud of the numerous jobs that our investments have helped to create. In the past 15 months, eCoast has been the lead investor in twelve deals, raising more than $17 million for early-stage companies.

The strategy of collaborating closely with entrepreneurs, supporting them with follow-on funding, and guiding them on the journey from start to exit has been rewarding for eCoast. To date, our members have been rewarded by participating in more than $1 billion of M&A activity.

A Special Thank you to our Event Supporters
Paul and Anna Grace Holloway
Bud Albin Entrepreneurship Fund
Charles and Mirium Nelson Fund for Business Innovation