CO-OP Financial Services' deadline for applications to its Think Prize for 2012 is August 31, leaving one month for potential entrants to file their entries.
The prize seeks to reward individual credit union employees for innovative thinking on potential solutions to issues confronting the credit union industry. The thinking could lead to new products, processes or organizational structures.
Matt Weidler of Evangelical Christian Credit Union, one of Credit Union Times Trailblazers 40 Below, won $10,000 in the inaugural CO-OP THINK Prize competition last year for his idea for allowing ATMs to validate transactions via mobile phones.
“The CO-OP THINK Prize is designed to initiate and reward new thinking on how to propel the credit union movement forward,” said CO-OP Financial Services CEO Stan Hollen. “We had a great inaugural competition in 2011 and we are looking forward to the 2012 contest once again serving as a conduit for the innovation and creativity of credit union employees.”
The entry form is available here. Entrants must complete six short-answer questions in Round 1 via the online form. The entries will be judged by representatives of CO-OP and the Filene Research Institute, with judging based on impact, creativity and how well the idea or innovation can be shared..
After the close of the competition’s Round 1 on August 31, a total of 25 semi-finalists will be notified around Sept. 30. These semi-finalists will have until Nov. 30 to complete their Round 2 work. Three finalists will be named around Jan. 5, 2012, and the grand prize winner will be announced at the THINK 12 Conference in Boca Raton, Fla., on April 30, 2012.
In addition to the $10,000 grand prize, the three finalists and one guest each will have round-trip travel and hotel accommodation costs covered for their attendance at THINK 12. The 25 semi-finalists will each receive a $150 gift card.