Top 100 Finalists for the Annual Chicago Innovation Awards

Code Platoon is Named One of the Top 100 Finalists for the 17th Annual Chicago Innovation Awards

Chicago, IL— Out of 519 nominees, Code Platoon has been selected as one of the Top 100 Finalists still in the running for the 17th annual Chicago Innovation Awards.  The awards celebrate the most innovative new products and services in the Chicago region across all organization sizes, sectors and industries.  1500 business and civic leaders will come together to honor the winners when they are announced on October 29th at Chicago’s Harris Theater.

Code Platoon is the only software coding bootcamp in the Chicagoland area that exclusively focuses on teaching veterans and military spouses these skills. Most coding bootcamps cost between $12,000 and $20,000, creating a barrier of entry. At Code Platoon, each student is eligible to apply for a scholarship that covers $10,500 of their $13,000 tuition, making this career path affordable and attainable. We also offer extra scholarships to women veterans who join the program as they are historically underrepresented in technology based careers. By design, Code Platoon is serving those who have served their country by providing affordable professional software development skills.

Our approach is innovative in that we have identified a path to full-time employment for veterans, utilizing skills they have already honed while they served our country. Many veterans struggle with translating employment skills learned during their years of service to a civilian career. Through our own research and deep understanding of the software development field, we will serve as a role model for organizations who provide underemployed veterans with quality employment. In 2019, we are expanding our mission to include military spouses in our program. Based on our deep knowledge of the veteran landscape, we know that it is important to serve the whole military family. As with veterans, military spouses struggle to find careers because of the demands of living the military lifestyle. At Code Platoon, we are looking forward to helping military spouses become software development professionals as well.  

“Chicago continues to rise as a global hub of innovation due to the breadth of organizations in our region that introduce a stream of new products and services into the market each year,” said Tom Kuczmarski, co-founder with Chicago journalist Dan Miller of the awards.  “This year’s nominees generated a combined total of $3.44 billion in revenues through their new products and services alone.”

As one of the Top 100 Finalists, Code Platoon will receive a $2,500 scholarship to attend The Practical Innovator, a day-long executive education course on September 26th led by top faculty who teach innovation at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.

Each of the Top 100 Finalists is also in the running for the annual “People’s Choice Award,” selected through online balloting at

Out of the Top 100 Finalists, the judges will select 10 winners of the Chicago Innovation Awards, as well as 10 winners of the Up-and-Comer Awards representing innovation in the start-up community, the Social Innovator Award, the Collaboration Award, and 3 Neighborhood Award winners, which will showcase innovation occurring in Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods.  The winners will be invited to ring the NASDAQ Bell in New York City, invited to separate meetings with Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Governor Bruce Rauner and Cook Count President Toni Preckwinkle, and receive widespread media recognition.


Rodrigo Levy, Code Platoon


Luke TanenChicago Innovation




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