newway | Jan 7, 2015

‘Fast Pitch’ Event Selects 20 Nonprofits for High-Stakes Competition

PHOENIX – Social Venture Partners Arizona (SVPAZ) is pleased to announce today it has chosen 20 innovative nonprofits as semi-finalists for the 2015 Arizona Fast Pitch competition

Fast Pitch culminates in a live, showcase event March 4 at the Tempe Center for the Arts. It goes like this: You are an innovative nonprofit and you need cash. Up to $52,000 in multiple grants is on the line for best pitch. You have 3 minutes. GO!

The event is affectionately known in the business and philanthropic world as “American Idol with a soul,” and has been described by media outlets and nonprofit groups as a “cool concept” with a “crazy idea:” How can you change the world in three minutes?”

And that’s exactly what Fast Pitch aims to do. The program is part of SVPAZ’s commitment to bringing a venture capital approach to philanthropy. These 20 nonprofits, along with three student groups from Arizona State University, will participate in a two-month-long training and mentoring program designed to sharpen their social impact and business plans, and to train them to succinctly and powerfully “tell their stories.”
Nonprofits that advance to the final stage of the competition will use that training to contend for SVPAZ cash awards, plus thousands more raised during the event by community leaders, business executives and philanthropists looking to invest in the nonprofits to help sustain or grow their missions.

“Like past years, we had such a powerful group of applicants, which makes it so difficult to pare the list to 20 semi-finalists,” said Terri Wogan, SVPAZ Executive Director. “These are the best and brightest nonprofits that are making real social change in the Valley. We are excited to help them grow and make our community a better place each and every day.”

Early Bird tickets for the March 4 event can be purchased at