In recognition of the excellence and innovation within Minnesota’s technology ecosystem, MnTech announced 59 Finalists during the Tekne Awards Finalist Announcement Reception, held last Thursday September 28th, for the nominees, sponsors and judges.

The finalists were selected from the field of applicants and nominees by a 40-person judging team who were aligned to the various award categories based on their respective areas of expertise.

“These finalists are making a significant impact right here in Minnesota and in many cases around the world. We look forward to further recognizing these leaders and leading organizations and unveiling the award recipients at the Tekne Awards.” said Jeff Tollefson, President and CEO of MnTech.

The Tekne Award Winners will be announced at the MnTech’s 25th Tekne Awards celebration on November 16th at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

“We are delighted to be back together in person to recognize the incredible accomplishments and exceptional leadership represented by our finalists, who are all helping drive our technology economy in Minnesota”, said Molly Doyle, Vice President of Community and Member Engagement and co-host of the upcoming event.

The Tekne Awards is a celebration of the strength of Minnesota’s technology ecosystem. The event honors the leaders and leading organizations fueling Minnesota’s tech-driven economy, with 15 Tekne Awards across three categories: Business Impact, Community Impact, and Individual Achievement.

Among the award categories are Advancements in Artificial Intelligence, Cybersecurity, Outstanding Achievement in Market Innovation, Excellence in Customer/User experience, Excellence in Tech Talent Development, Sustainability Champion, and Rising Star Award. The winners will be chosen from among the finalists at the Tekne Awards ceremony on Nov. 16th at the Minneapolis Convention Center.

The 2023 Tekne Awards ceremony attracts hundreds of the state’s most influential leaders in business, higher education and politics.

For additional information and registration:

For sponsorship information: View Tekne Sponsorship Opportunities.

Advancements in Artificial Intelligence

This award celebrates companies that have made notable advancements in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) or machine learning (ML), whether through research, application, or implementation.  This award category seeks to acknowledge companies and teams who have leveraged AI to create revolutionary solutions, solve complex problems, and push the boundaries of what is possible. 

Raise a Hood

Data Security

This award category recognizes outstanding achievements and advancements in safeguarding data integrity, security and confidentiality. These finalists have demonstrated excellence in developing and implementing robust measures to protect sensitive information, mitigate risks, and preserve individual privacy rights.   

Minnesota IT Services
Digi International

Outstanding Achievements in Data Analytics

This award category celebrates advancements in the field of data analytics. It recognizes organizations that have demonstrated outstanding innovation, expertise, and impact in leveraging data to gain valuable insights and drive meaningful outcomes. We seek to honor organizations and teams who have made remarkable contributions to the field, revolutionizing the way data is collected, processed, analyzed, and interpreted. 

Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
Quantified Mechanix
Best Buy

Excellence in Customer / User Experience

This award category acknowledges outstanding achievements in enhancing the overall experience for customers or users. These finalists have successfully transformed their products, services, or platforms to provide exceptional and memorable interactions that exceed customer expectations. 

Total Expert
CHS, Inc.
Winnebago Industries
SPS Commerce

Outstanding Achievement in Market Innovation

This award recognizes organizations which have made a profound impact by introducing innovations that have caused a significant disruption within a market. We celebrate the visionary leadership and groundbreaking achievements of these finalists, who have pushed the boundaries of what was previously thought possible and caused a paradigm shift in their respective industries or service areas. 

Francis Medical, Inc.
Land O’ Lakes
Urotronic, Inc.
CAMP Digital

Excellence in Partnership

This award recognizes an exceptional partnership between a vendor or service provider and their client that has produced remarkable results for the client’s business. Finalists in this category have demonstrated an exemplary level of collaboration, cooperation, and mutual trust, working together to address the challenges faced by the client. 

RBA / H.B. Fuller
WipeOS / HealthConnect America
The Jed Mahonis Group / Little Free Library
Minnesota IT Services / Technology Advisory Council
Digineer / Anytime Fitness

Tech for Good

Whether through innovative solutions, impactful collaborations, or far-reaching programs, the Tech for Good award celebrates organizations who have dedicated their resources and expertise to address critical challenges in our society and create lasting positive change. This award shines a spotlight on the remarkable achievements of these finalists, who have gone above and beyond to create a better future for Minnesota. 

Hennepin County Office of Broadband and Digital Inclusion
Southeast Service Cooperative
Analytics for Good Institute
Girls Dream Code

Sustainability Champion

This award recognizes companies that have demonstrated an outstanding commitment to sustainable practices and gone above and beyond to incorporate environmental stewardship into their core business strategies and operationsFinalists in this category have embraced sustainability as a fundamental value, implementing practices and processes that reduce their environmental impact and promote long-term ecological well-being.  

Sleep Number
Land O’ Lakes
Thermo King
Winnebago Industries – Motorized

Tech Talent Development (Corporate Initiative)

This award recognizes innovative approaches or operating excellence in the hiring, development, and retention of tech talent. These finalists are recognized for embracing forward-thinking approaches and initiatives, serving as role models for the industry and setting new standards in talent acquisition, management and development. 

U.S. Bank
Daugherty Business Solutions

Building Our Tech Future (Solution Provider, Agency, Non-Profit) 

This distinguished award recognizes the impactful programming and initiatives undertaken by solution providers, agencies, and non-profit organizations, aimed at inspiring youth to consider careers in technology and equipping students with the skills and experiences needed for success in this field. These finalist organizations are driving positive change by investing in the future of Minnesota’s tech workforce and ultimately contributing to the economic and technological advancement of our state as well as the financial future of our talented workforce. 

Code Savvy
High Tech Kids
Science from Scientists

Technology Leader

MnTech honors these finalists for their ability to drive innovation, inspire teams, and make significant contributions to the industry while supporting the growth and career success of other technologists as a mentor, influencer, or role model. These finalists have contributed substantial thought leadership while influencing and empowering our next generation of technologists. 

Anudeep Parhar
Eric Williams
Richard Walker
Ty Spratt

Rising Star

This award recognizes promising individuals who are early in their tech careers, with less than 10 years of experience, but who have already made remarkable contributions and demonstrated exceptional potential within their technology area. These finalists should be recognized for their talent, creativity, significant accomplishments, and exciting potential to shape the future of their respective fields. 

Keelia Escalante
Mackenzie Hall
Matthew Hauwiller
Paige Stauske

Career Achievement

This prestigious award celebrates individuals who have made sustained and significant contributions to the technology industry. These award recipients have left an indelible mark on our technology community through their contributions, achievements, outstanding career journey, and extraordinary impact. 

Announced as winners:
Dee Thibodeau
Tom Kieffer

Tech Educator of the Year

This award celebrates teachers who have helped advance the field of technology education in Minnesota in such a way that will have a broad and deep impact, not only on their students but also impacted their school, their district, and beyond.  The award recipient is being recognized and celebrated for remarkable achievements, unwavering commitment, innovative teaching methods, and profound impact on the field of technology education. 

Announced as winner:
Shannon Seaver

Public Service Award

This award recognizes elected officials, philanthropists, or those working in public agencies for their contributions towards building a stronger future for MinnesotaThis recipient has demonstrated a tremendous personal and professional commitment to support our technology industry and bolster the potential economic contributions of tech-enabled businesses, leveraging great influence to help foster a thriving technology ecosystem in Minnesota. 

Announced as winner:
Doug Carnival

Sponsorships Available

There are a few remaining opportunities to sponsor the 25th annual Tekne Awards! view the Tekne Sponsorship Prospectus to learn more, or reach out to Molly Doyle at to learn more.

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