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Volunteer with Fast Pitch

Fast Pitch would not exist without our amazing volunteers, and we would love to have you join our team! Our 2014 program has concluded, but stay tuned for details on our next Fast Pitch and check out these different roles to see if there’s a fit for your skills and interests!


Coaches will work with a Fast Pitch participant on both the substance and the presentation of their business plan or initiative, focusing on the judging criteria. We need coaches for 40 teams. Experience working with innovators in non-profit or socially-motivated for-profit early-stage ventures is required.

Coaches’ tasks include reading and scoring applications (2-4 hours); review of participant materials (1-2 hours); at least one in-person coaching session (2-4 hours); attend or review videos of the Quarterfinals (2-6 hours), and informal email/phone/coffee discussions (3+ hours).

Ideally, coaches will build relationships with SVP Fast Pitch participants that continue informally based on mutual interests and needs, providing encouragement and support as the participants progress through the program.

Time commitment: 10 hours total per mentee. Coaches may sign up to help multiple mentees, or stick with one.


Participant’s’ Guide to Pitch Coaching

Coache’s guide to Pitch Coaching

Judging Rubric

Volunteer Expert

Volunteer Experts are people who have expertise that could be applied to coach or help social innovators in targeted areas.  For example, you could help with business modelling, or impact measurement, or presentation development, or social media.    Experience working with innovators in non-profit or socially-motivated for-profit early-stage ventures is highly desired but not required.

Time commitment: ~4+ hours. Experts may be asked to interact with multiple teams.

Pitch Coach

A pitch coach is someone who has extensive experience in pitching new concepts (business or nonprofit) to a decent sized audience, or in coaching others to do the same, and who will focus more on the style, form, and clarity of presentation and less on depth of its content.  Pitch Coaches will provide real-time verbal and written feedback to presenters during the Pitch Clinics.

Time commitment: 4 hours per Pitch Clinic

Application Screeners

The screening team will read the applications and one-pagers, and score them based on our published rubric.  Screeners who are most engaged will have the opportunity to participate in a process to select the 40 Quarterfinalists.

This is a very important role; we need a good number of screeners who will read the plans and provide good written feedback to applications, which we know they value highly.

Time commitment: 4-10 hours of reading online materials and writing comments

Quarterfinalist Judges

These individuals, like Pitch Coaches, should have extensive experience in evaluating innovative programs in the nonprofit or for-profit sector. They will watch (preferably all) 40 Quarterfinalist pitches, give contestants feedback in verbal and written form, and provide input to the SVP Fast Pitch team who will make the final decisions of which 40 Quarterfinalists advance to be 20 Semifinalists.

Time commitment: Up to 9 hours during the Quarterfinals (September 18, 2014)

Semifinalists and Finalist Judges

These judges will be selected and announced separately. Semifinalist judges will determine which nonprofits advance to the finals, and final judges will select the winners of the various grant awards  and provide input to the investors who will determine recipients of the over $250,000 in investment funds.


The marketing team needs photographers to document the competitions, pitch clinics, events, and Showdown. Must have own photography equipment. Should have some knowledge or be willing to learn Photoshelter.

Time commitment: 5-20 hours. Flexible.

Ushers/Registration Table

People who will help the day of the final showdown.