November 28 @ 6 PM

Doors open @ 530 PM

What the Entrepreneur Showcase Is All About

This Shark Tank type event is hosted by the 5th T Innovation Group and its centers, the Conway Innovation Center and the Georgetown Innovation Center. Local entrepreneurs will share their stories, experiences, and explain why they chose the Grand Strand for their business. After the presentation, you, the audience will vote on which presentation you thought was the most engaging.

Congratulations to all of the entrepreneurs that participated in our Entrepreneur Showcase and a special congratulations to the winner of the event, Jacob Oressie, CEO and Founder of D1 Recruit. We would like to thank everyone that came out to the event and supported the entrepreneur community. Make sure to Like our Facebook page and Follow us @CICInnovation for future updates and opportunities within the Grand Strand

Meet The Panel

Peter Gasca

  • P.Gasca LinkedIn

Peter Gasca is the Director of the Community and Business Engagement (CoBE) Institute at Coastal Carolina University (CCU), a program that mentors high achieving university students through real business consulting projects with domestic and international businesses. At CCU, Peter also serves as an Executive in Residence and Lecturer in the Wall College of Business. He also consults, advises and writes about business, innovation and entrepreneurship for and, and is the co-author of One Million Frogs, a book about his entrepreneur experience.

Prior to working with CCU, Peter co-founded and served as CEO of Wild Creations. In 2010, Wild Creations was recognized as the #1 fastest growing company in South Carolina and an Inc. 500 honoree. In 2011, Peter was nominated for the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year for the Carolinas.  

Deborah McKetty

  • D.McKetty LinkedIn

Deborah McKetty is the President/CEO of CommunityWorks, a regional U.S. Treasury certified Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) in South Carolina committed to building brighter futures for underserved families and communities through financial education, lending, and investing.

Deborah is a native of Greenville, South Carolina, where she is a tireless advocate and champion of community economic development. Her volunteer service and advocacy span across the state and Southeast region. 

In 2013, she successfully launched a microbusiness lending program that has received local attention and national recognition by becoming an SBA, USDA, and SC Department of Commerce microbusiness lender. To date, the organization has financed over 150 small and minority owned businesses totaling over $3.6 million in loans.

Ray Antonino

  • R. Antonino

Ray Antonino is a three-time entrepreneur whose first went into business at the age of 20 with $10k loan. While successful in that he grew his business to $2M a year in revenue, Ray ultimately had to file for bankruptcy and lost everything after 6 years of business.


Following that, Ray built his second business with $16k that he had saved. Within 4 years, that business grew to span 3 states, employed 14 people and did over $7M a year in revenue. While successful in that his business was completely debt-free and profitable, it was here that Ray realized that it was the technology he had built to manage and scale his business that was of most interest.


Fast forward, and Ray is now 2 years into his third business. This time, as a tech entrepreneur, blazing a trail and building something that does not exist. His technology startup, PermitZone, has raised $370k to date and is currently valued at $4M.


As the founder of a company that was selected by the #2 Technology Accelerator in the world, Techstars, Ray has made the full transition from a 2x brick-n-motor small-business entrepreneur, to a scalable, tech entrepreneur who mentors others seeking to learn from his experiences.



Travel Tips

Getting There

This event will be located on Coastal Carolina University's campus at the Wheelwright Auditorium, 108 Spadoni Park Cir, Conway, SC 29526


Map Color Legend
Orange: Auditorium Location
(Wheelwright Auditorium)
Teal: Parking Locations
(Lots KK, G, E)

©2017-18 by 5thT Innovation Group

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