2017 James Tyree Emerging Business Leadership Award



 The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce, Mesirow Financial and The PrivateBank are pleased to announce that applications are being accepted for the prestigious 6th Annual James Tyree Emerging Business Leadership Award which includes a $50,000 award, which is presented annually to a high-growth entrepreneur who is philanthropically active in the Chicagoland area.


Past winners have included 2015 winner Neil Byers owner of Horse Thief Hollow and 2016 winner Sophie Evanoff owner of Vanille Patisserie.  “The entire process of the James Tyree Award was a life changing event not only for me personally, but also for Vanille. Our business has grown, customers are coming from all areas of Chicago and our employees have been provided with health benefits,” said Sophie Evanoff, owner of Vanille Patisserie, the 2016 Tyree Award winner. “The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce opened so many doors to incredible people who are always ready to provide help and perspectives. We are now positioned to make Vanille a national “brand.”


The open application period will run February 13 through March 17, 2017. During a kickoff reception on Wednesday, April 12 at Mesirow Financial, 12 finalists will pitch their businesses to a panel of judges while a live audience vote determines which finalists advance. A private panel of judges will convene in May to evaluate the remaining finalists. The winner will be announced at the Chicagoland Chamber’s 113th Annual Meeting on June 6th!


Visit https://www.chicagolandchamber.org/ to apply or for more information about the award.


Award Criteria:


The winner receives $50,000 in cash courtesy of Mesirow Financial and The PrivateBank, as well as valuable business consulting services from the Chicagoland Chamber.


Qualified applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • Operate within the six-county Chicagoland metropolitan area
  • Be in business for a minimum of two years
  • Demonstrate substantial growth over the past two years
  • Generate revenues of at least $500,000 but less than $10 million
  • Have five or more employees
  • Be active in local civic or philanthropic initiatives


For more information please feel free to contact our office at (773) 348-3434 or contact Mike Reever of the Chicagoland Chamber at (312) 494- 6736.