2016 Awardees

Descartes Labs, Los Alamos
Nominated by: Los Alamos County Manager Dr.  Harry Burgess

Descartes Labs of Los Alamos has the largest archive of online satellite imagery in the world, which is used to forecast global commodity crop production—more accurately, more frequently, and more granularly than the best government or commercial sources. Descartes Labs has developed a hyper-scalable, general purpose machine-learning platform designed for forecasting, monitoring, and historical analysis of other major commodity supply chains, such as oil and gas, mining, lumber and water along with the agricultural forecasts it currently releases. Descartes Labs currently employs 25 and will leverage their success in agriculture to realize growth in future supply chains.


EtkieSanta Fe
Nominated by: Santa Fe County

Sydney Alfonso created Etkie to fill the demand of the luxury market for mission-driven, value-based products. Etkie employs an artisan network of Native American beadworkers, jewelers and craftspeople based in New Mexico, and was founded to support indigenous people with living wages while keeping traditions alive. Currently, Etkie employs 11 and plans to double their retail accounts to 160 worldwide in the near future which will allow the company to expand their workforce. Etkie was a 2015 Venture Acceleration Fund award winner.


High Water MarkCochiti Pueblo
Nominated by: Cochiti Pueblo Governor Nicholas Garcia

High Water Mark was founded in the monsoon season of 2013 in Cochiti Pueblo to address the needs of New Mexico communities impacted by the flooding. Founded by Phoebe Suina and Ryan Weiss, the company is making a successful transition from working exclusively with tribes to working with municipalities and collaborating with major firms for larger contracts. Now, they are poised to begin bidding on federal contracts themselves. High Water Mark currently employs 11, and expects to double that number and raise their revenues exponentially over the next three years as they expand into the state and federal markets. The company has received assistance by the Laboratory’s NMSBA program, the Regional Development Corporation, and was awarded the Native American Venture Acceleration Fund in both 2015 and 2016.


Southwest PPE ServicesEspañola
Nominated by: Española  Mayor Alice Lucero

Southwest PPE Services is a division of Mountain Air Cleaners, and has managed to extract admirable growth in a declining industry with the system the company has devised to care for Personal Protective Ensembles used in the fire service industry. The company is reconditioning PPEs to give them longer life and reduce fire service budgets. Southwest PPE Services currently employs 16, and is expanding to serve the entire intermountain corridor. It has been growing at a rate of 75 percent year over year, and has been named a 2016 Venture Acceleration Fund award winner.


Wildflower InternationalSanta Fe
Nominated by: Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales

Since 1991, Wildflower has delivered world-class products and services to the federal government with a philosophy towards improving itself, its business partners and its community. A certified Small Business Administration 8(a) company, Wildflower has already grown immensely from its start as a home-based business in Glorieta to the company it is today that employs 80 people. Wildflower, founded by Kimberly deCastro, is one of the most respected woman-owned small business federal contractors in the country. The company projects future growth in the work they do to support federal agencies domestically and internationally, and will add jobs to our region through their commitment to keeping a primarily local workforce.


XpressSanta Fe
Nominated by: Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales

Kimberly Corbitt already employs more than 150 New Mexicans with her other business, Santa Lucia, which provides services for people with developmental disabilities. In 2013, she founded Xpress to put doctors in charge of the relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. Xpress has created a bias-free platform that enables smarter and more efficient prescription decisions for healthcare providers. The company is collaborating with two major pharmaceutical companies, and currently employs five people. Xpress is headquartered in Santa Fe, with a satellite office in Houston. A new office will open shortly in San Francisco that will directly support a major partnership there. It will result in three six-figure jobs immediately in New Mexico. Xpress expects to employ more than 60 over the next five years.