Young Americans Center tabs three winners of 10th annual Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs

Three outstanding young business owners take home the top prize of $1,000 plus mentoring in their age categories at the Young Americans Center for Financial Education's 10th Annual "Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs" contest.
(L-R): Natalie Merrill, Jay Sayre, Miles Louison
(L-R): Natalie Merrill, Jay Sayre, Miles Louison
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Young American Center
Young Entrepreneurs
Bill Daniels
Sag Straps
Candy Sushi
Foot Jewelry


Colorado - US

Sept. 19, 2011 - PRLog -- DENVER - Three outstanding youth-operated businesses emerged as winners from a spirited competition in the Young American Center ( for Financial Education’s 10th annual “Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs Contest,” earning cash prizes and free mentoring from Colorado business leaders.  Celebrating the spirit of Young Americans’ founder Bill Daniels, one of America’s greatest entrepreneurs, this exciting competition featured more than 50 businesses from all across Colorado that are owned and operated by youth ages 6-21. The three 2011 winning entrepreneurs are:

           Age category 6-11: Miles Louison, Age 10, The Dessert Company, LLC, Aurora, CO
           Age category 12-15: Natalie Merrill, Age 12, Buttons ‘r Knot, Colorado Springs, CO
           Age category 16-21: Jay Sayre, Age 18, Sag Straps, Denver, CO

Miles Louison’s The Dessert Company’s product is “Candy Sushi” made of fruit rollups, Rice Krispies, Twizzlers, gummy worms, marshmallows and Swedish fish, packaged to look just like regular sushi. Natalie Merrill’s Buttons ‘r Knot produces fashionable foot jewelry that can also be worn as a necklace or bracelet. Jay Sayre’s Sag Strips are durable, creative suspenders that are custom-designed specifically for younger, active individuals. All three companies are more than two years old and besides providing a solid business plan, demonstrated growth, market demand and detailed financial reports.

A panel of independent judges reviewed the 53 applications and selected the winner and two finalists. Winners receive $1,000, and finalists received $250, to be used for business or education.  Winners, finalists and all applicants participated in the Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs dinner and awards ceremony on September 15, 2011, at the Seawell Grand Ballroom at the Denver Center for Performing Arts in downtown Denver.

In addition, the winners also have the chance to work with and learn from a Presenting Mentor – a leader from the Denver business community who will share business advice, experience and encouragement. This year, Linda Childears, President and CEO of The Daniels Fund, Linda Enstrom, Denver Area Manager of Entrom Candy, and Patrick Quinlan, CEO of Rivet Software will serve as presenting mentors.

About Young Americans Center for Financial Education
Young Americans Center for Financial Education is a Denver-based nonprofit dedicated to developing financial literacy in young people, 21 and under.  In addition to Celebration for Young Entrepreneurs, other programs such as Young AmeriTowne, International Towne and Get aHead for Business teach important financial and business skills through engaging classes and hands-on experience.  Learn more at or by calling 303-321-2265

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