Statesboro's Grice Connect won the 2023 Next Challenge for Media & Journalism the Audience Choice Award which comes with a $10,000 grant. The competition sought groundbreaking startups that will reinvent media in the coming decade.
"When we began Grice Connect, our goal was simple, to provide a central place where Bulloch County residents could go for local news, events and obituaries updated daily," said DeWayne Grice, Founder of Grice Connect.
"We never dreamed our simple idea to connect our community would become a global model for hyper-local news operations. This award would not have been possible without each member of the Grice Connect team, here in Statesboro and in Canada, working so hard for this community daily. Along with the incredible local businesses and individuals who provide financial support. Of course, we WON because each of you took your time to vote for us. This personal endorsement of Grice Connect means the world to all of us. For that we say THANK YOU!"
The contest began with 360 entries, which was narrowed to 36 then 11. The 36 finalists across three divisions were all eligible for the public voting award. Over 6,000 votes were cast and Grice Connect edged out the closest competitor by only 80 votes.
Grice Connect was also named a finalist in the Future of News Division supported by Knight Foundation. This competition is looking for a startup pioneering new ways to report the news and provide communities with fact-based insight, analysis, and information.
The Audience Choice Award winner for the 2023 Next Challenge for Media & Journalism was announced on Thursday evening, May 25, 2023 at an awards presentation during the American Public Media Group's UBS Forum in St. Paul, Minnesota. This $10,000 will help Grice Connect to continue expand services and coverage of local news and events in Bulloch County.
Below is the 90 second video presentation by DeWayne Grice that was included in the public vote:
Glen Nelson Center at American Public Media Group (APMG) launched the second annual Next Challenge for Media and Journalism. The Next Challenge was a national startup competition seeking groundbreaking for-profit and nonprofit startups that will reinvent media in the coming decade.
APMG hosted this year’s competition in partnership with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Thomson Reuters, Google News Initiative and YouTube. AT&T Foundation provided grant support for this program. Public media partners include Minnesota Public Radio, WAMU, KERA, WHYY, and KPCC.
“The Next Challenge is an unparalleled opportunity to see the future of media,” said Jeff Freeland Nelson, Executive Director of Glen Nelson Center. "It is inspiring to see the solutions these startups present to the real challenges confronting the media industry.”