NewBoCo, Iowa Startup Accelerator earn accolades at 2020 Startup Iowa Awards

Rob MerrittUncategorized

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (Jan. 27. 2021) – NewBoCo earned two major accolades at the 2020 Startup Iowa Awards, with the Iowa Startup Accelerator being named Accelerator of the Year and NewBoCo itself earning the selection of Entrepreneurial Support Organization of the Year.

The awards were announced Tuesday by Clay & Milk, the digital publication that covers Iowa’s tech, startup and entrepreneurial communities.

“It’s always an honor to be recognized for the work we do in Iowa’s startup ecosystem, but it’s especially meaningful when the organizations selecting the nominations and winners are peers who also do so much for our community,” said Aaron Horn, NewBoCo Executive Director. “Every 2020 Startup Iowa Award nominee is doing impactful work and we love collaborating with them to strengthen and grow Iowa entrepreneurship. Our heartfelt thanks goes out to Clay & Milk, the judges, and our community.”

According to Clay & Milk, the Entrepreneurial Support Organization of the Year award recognizes NewBoCo for its efforts in connecting and supporting entrepreneurs and early-stage companies in Iowa. Meanwhile, the Accelerator of the Year Award recognizes the program that uses education, mentorship and financing to boost companies in the early stages of growth.

Despite the challenges of 2020, NewBoCo and the Iowa Startup Accelerator stayed on mission, with the EdTech Accelerator cohort graduating during the summer and new ISA Managing Director Alex Taylor joining the team in the fall. Efforts to recruit a new cohort for 2021 are now underway, with applications accepted through Feb. 5.

“It’s nice to be recognized for success during what one could arguably say was a difficult year,” said Alex Taylor, “We took this time to improve and expand our program, and look forward to accelerate our success in 2021.”

Here is the full list of winners for the 2020 Startup Iowa Awards:

  • Entrepreneurial Support Organization of the Year: NewBoCo
  • Student Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by 1 Million Cups Des Moines): Linda Tong
  • Non-founder Employee of the Year: Matt McMullen, MākuSafe
  • Investor of the Year: Next Level Ventures
  • Accelerator of the Year: Iowa Startup Accelerator
  • Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by the Greater Des Moines Partnership): Benjamin Lefever, Certintell
  • Startup of the Year (sponsored by Dickinson Law): Growers Edge

To learn more about Clay & Milk and the Iowa Startup Awards, visit