2018 Grand Prize Winner:
Alex Hart-Upendo, a 5th grader at Gifford Elementary School in Racine who has made a splash in national news media, is the grand prize winner in Wisconsin YES!, a statewide youth business plan contest for students in middle and high school.
Hart-Upendo’s company, Build-A-Bow, is a custom eco-friendly bow retailer specializing in bow ties, hair bows and bow ties for dogs. Hart-Upendo founded Build-A-Bow when he was just nine years old.
In addition to starting his business, Hart-Upendo is the author of “Bullies, Bowties and Brilliant Alex.” Written at only nine years old and published in 2016, Hart-Upendo wrote the book to encourage the inner entrepreneur in children, while bringing awareness to bullying. Hart-Upendo has been featured in Forbes and GQ magazines and received attention from Ellen Degeneres, Steve Harvey, Harry Connick Jr. and ABC’s Shark Tank.