FIRST PLACE: Tashi Organics

Pictured from left to right: Tashi Nangsetsang, judge; Duncan Moore, vice provost for entrepreneurship; Mikayla Hart, University of Rochester; Kari Wozniak, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Song Pak, judge; Michael Wohl, associate director of social entrepreneurship; and Lobsang Nyandak, judge.

Idea: Tashi Organics will provide Tibetan refugees with tools and education of value-added processing, along with distribution and marketing services to create sustainable sources of income through sales of organic products.


Pictured from left to right: Tashi Nangsetsang, judge; Duncan Moore, vice provost for entrepreneurship; April Nishimura; Kirti Kyab; Aaron Cooper, all of Brandeis University; Song Pak, judge; Michael Wohl, associate director of social entrepreneurship; and Lobsang Nyandak, judge.

Idea: Farm Tibet provides employment to Tibetan refugees and exiled Tibetan farmers by transforming organic produce into the highest­ quality, shelf-­stable organic achar sold in India and the U.S.

THIRD PLACE: Mya Barley Powder

Pictured from left to right: Tashi Nangsetsang, judge; Duncan Moore, vice provost for entrepreneurship; Su Sean Ng; Sarah Spoto; Brandon Smart; Fahria Omar; Kat Cook, all of the University of Rochester/Simon Business School; Song Pak, judge; and Michael Wohl, associate director of social entrepreneurship.

Idea: Mya Barley Powder uses Tibetan barley in dissolvable form for athletic and health benefits. It appeals to diverse athletic markets and users of herbal medicine.


Nakul Agrawal, Neeraj Dhanothia, Patrick Gadd, Leo Luk, Arup Nath 

Idea: A social business with embedded humanity and shared values, Plateau connects Tibetans and the rest of the world by bringing natural and organic personal care products that have been handmade by Tibetans.

FINALIST: ConnecTibet

Melanie Bruno, Melissa Joannou 

Idea: ConnecTibet will provide a collaborative web-based open source platform that fosters growth in the settlements by allowing micro-entrepreneurs to connect, collaborate, and share information.



Randall Kempner is Executive Director of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE). As executive director of ANDE, Randall oversees the implementation of ANDE’s extensive program, research and advocacy agenda, including its seven international chapters and multiple grant and challenge competitions that support the entrepreneurship sector. Randall has twenty years of experience in the field of international economic development. Most recently, he served as Vice President for Regional Innovation at the U.S. Council on Competitiveness and prior to that was a founder of OTF Group. Randall graduated from the University of Texas with an M.B.A. and an M.P.Aff. He earned his bachelor’s degree in Government from Harvard College.

Executive Director of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs (ANDE)

Mr. Lobsang Nyandak currently serves as the Executive Director of the Tibet Fund and also acts as a Trustee to the Dalai Lama Trust based in the United States.

Mr. Nyandak has served extensively within the Tibetan community in exile in various capacities for more than 25 years. Prior to joining The Tibet Fund, he served with distinction as the Representative of His Holiness the Dalai Lama to the Americas for five years from 2008 to 2013. He also served as a Member of the Assembly of Tibetan People’s Deputies, Kalon (Minister) of the Department of Finance, Department of Health and the Department of Information & International relations in the Central Tibetan Administration based in Dharamsala, India. While serving as Finance Kalon, Mr. Nyandak also acted as the Managing Trustee of His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s Charitable Trust and Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Tibetan Social and Resource Development Fund. He was responsible in founding the Tibetan Chamber of Commerce and the National Tibetan Sweater Sellers Association.

Mr. Nyandak was the founding Executive Director of the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights from 1996 to until his appointment as Kalon in 2001 and later served as Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Tibetan Center for Human Rights and Democracy till 2004.

Mr. Nyandak received his Bachelor of Education and Bachelor of Arts from Panjab University, Chandigarh, India.

Executive Director of the Tibet Fund Trustee to the Dalai Lama Trust based in the U.S.

Song is Senior Vice President of Operations and Acting General Counsel at Revolution LLC and General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer at Revolution Growth.

Prior to joining Revolution, Song was Senior Vice President and General Counsel of Extend Health, Inc., operator of the country’s largest private Medicare insurance exchange.  Prior to that, Song was Corporate Counsel and Compliance Officer for Revolution Health Group (now a part of Everyday Health).

Song’s career has also included private legal practice with the law firm DLA Piper, where she represented a variety of clients including high-technology and emerging growth companies in the areas of bioscience, software, hardware, and telecommunications as well as venture capital, private equity, and other investment funds.  Her practice focused on general corporate and securities law, and included debt and equity offerings, venture capital and mezzanine financings, M&A, and investment fund formation.

Song is a frequent speaker on the use of private equity and venture capital as catalysts for economic development and has served as general counsel to the National Association of Seed and Venture Funds, a non-profit organization focused on the use of venture capital as a tool for economic development.

Song received her BA from Southern Methodist University and holds a JD from the University of Texas School of Law.

SVP of Operations & Acting General Counsel, Revolution LLC and General Counsel & Chief Compliance Officer, Revolution Growth

Tashi Nangsetsang was born in 1966 in Dharamsala, Northern India. He was only 6 years old when he immigrated to Canada with his parents.

Tashi has been an outstanding community leader over the years in Ontario. Today, Toronto has become the largest Tibetan community in Canada and he has been instrumental in the growth of the community.

Tashi was elected as the President of the Canadian Tibetan Association of Ontario in 1986-1988, 1994-1996, and 1998-2000.

In 2002, Tashi opened the Rangzen Café, the first Tibetan restaurant in the Parkdale/High Park area of Toronto which is now called Little Tibet. Today, there are 8 Tibetan restaurants on that same street.  He sold the restaurant in 2010 and purchased the building, which he owns today.

Tashi also volunteered as the Transportation Coordinator when His Holiness the Dalai Lama conferred Kalachakra Initiation in Toronto in 2004.

Today, he is a Project Manager at A & L Contractors, and a property and income investment advisor in the residential and commercial sector in the Toronto area.

Tibetan Community Leader in Toronto, Canada;
Project Manager, A&L Contractors


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