A community-driven platform for financing emerging innovations in Chicago’s green economy

There’s no shortage of inspired green projects in this city. Talented Chicagoans are developing build-your-own solar water heater kits, compost cultivation and distribution businesses, innumerable ways to make fresh produce accessible throughout the city, and so much more. What these projects have in common are the dedicated innovators making them happen – often in their spare time, without quite enough resources to bring them to scale.

That’s where BOOST comes in. The Delta BOOST Fund connects promising Chicago innovators with funding from community Boosters to help their project get off the ground and improve our city. 

How It Works
Innovators apply for a chance to present their project at the BOOST Funding Night. At this evening event, Innovators make a pitch to the Booster audience - all of whom have contributed to the BOOST Fund with the purchase of an event ticket - and Boosters vote for their favorite proposals. Innovators with the most votes get a share of the night’s proceeds plus money raised in the BOOST Fund. Last year, each winning innovator took home $3,200 and topped it off with a slew of in-kind resources. Over two years, BOOST has funded four exciting projects.


Cocktail Reception
Thursday, April 3, 2014

18 South Michigan Ave., 12th Floor

We will be holding a reception to celebrate past BOOST Innovators, update BOOSTERS on the progress of our winners, and introduce BOOST to new audience and potential funders.

BOOST Funding Night
TBD: Fall 2014
In the meantime, we are looking for new partnerships to help expand our capacity and increase the BOOST Fund for future Innovator projects. All contributions to BOOST are tax deductible and directly contribute to Innovator projects. Donate today!
Click here for event and ticket information:





Boosters attend the BOOST Funding Night. By pooling their resources and voting, boosters choose to support ventures that strengthen our city’s environment and economy.

Get in on the action at BOOST Funding Night




Innovators are starting their own sustainable projects that will improve the city of Chicago. They submit applications for a chance to receive part of the BOOST fund at the BOOST Funding Night. 

2013 Innovators (winners bolded)
Accelerate 77 - Seva Ghandi
Urban Canopy - Alex Poltorak

Chicago Biodigesters - Paige Humecki
Community Glue - Aly Brisbin and Carla Bruni
Field and Florist - Heidi Joynt

2012 Innovators (winners bolded)
Every Last Morsel - Todd Jones
WeFarm - Seneca Kern

Health as Wealth - Vanessa Smith
Storybooks for Sustainability - Amanda Medress
The Plant - John Edel


Building Opportunities for Original and Sustainable Thinking (BOOST) is a project of the Delta Emerging Leaders, a committee of the Delta Institute that empowers young leaders to develop and advance the green economy.

For more information about BOOST, contact us at