Applications are now closed

Stay tuned for updates regarding the 2024 CO— 100

The Premier Awards Program for Small Business

Applications for the 2024 CO— 100 are now closed.   The CO—100 is an exclusive list of the 100 best and brightest small and mid-sized businesses in America. These are businesses to watch — driving innovation, growth, and ingenuity in their communities and around the world. Our awards program celebrates more than just your business’s bottom line; we care about your ideas, challenges, community, company culture, customers, and overall growth. 

Be the first to receive information and updates about the program as well as the upcoming October event by subscribing to our newsletter.

Presented By:

The CO— 100 will have an exclusive meet and greet with Dominique Dawes, the three-time Olympian and gold medalist, mom, and small business owner who will share her story of grit and perseverance and how those qualities pushed her to the top of her sport and, later, led to the launch of the successful Dominique Dawes Gymnastics & Ninja Academies.

Our Expert Panel

We’ve carefully selected a distinguished panel of business and media experts to judge the CO—100. Learn more about our judges here.

  • Jeanette Mulvey

    Vice President and Editor-in-Chief
  • Caleb Silver

    Editor in Chief & S.V.P.
  • Lillian Werbin

    CEO & Co-Owner
    Elderly Instruments
    America's Top Small Business Winner
  • Eric Schurenberg

    Alliance for Trust in Media
    Former CEO
    Inc. and Fast Company
  • Ramon Ray

  • Bridget Weston

  • Tom Sullivan

    Vice President, Small Business Policy
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Anthony Ha

    Technology Journalist; Weekend Editor
  • Carmen West

    Vice President, Equality of Opportunity Initiative
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Hadley Douglas

    Co-Founder and President
    The Drink Progressively Group
    America's Top Small Business Winner
  • J.D. LaRock

    President and CEO
    Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE)
  • Ingrid Jacques

    National Opinion Columnist
  • Shanique Streete

    Executive Director, Programs
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation
  • Karen Kerrigan

    President & CEO
    Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council
  • Loren Feldman

    Founder and Editor-in-Chief
    21 Hats
  • Will Chen

    Founder & CEO
    P.L.A.Y. Pet Lifestyle And You
    America's Top Small Business Finalist 2023
  • Barry Moltz

    Small Business Expert
    M&A Advisor
  • Rieva Lesonsky

    Small Business Currents
  • Brian Moran

    Founder & CEO
    Small Business Edge, Brian Moran & Associates
    Bricks or Sticks
  • April Peterson

    River Rock Outfitter
    America's Top Small Business Finalist 2023
  • Denise Berkhalter

    National Director of Communications
    Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE)
  • Joe Shamess

    Founding General Partner
    Flintlock Capital
    U.S. Chamber Small Business Council
  • Heesun Lho

    Vice President of Programs
    Tory Burch Foundation
  • Chad Brooks

    Managing Editor and Business News Daily
  • Sara Armstrong

    Vice President and Managing Director, Federation Relations and Grassroots Advocacy
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • Melinda Emerson

    SmallBizLady Enterprises
  • Traci Tapani

    Wyoming Machine
    Vice Chair
    U.S. Chamber Small Business Council
  • Bill Rossi

    Rossi Enterprises
    U.S. Chamber Small Business Council
  • Paul Cheek

    Executive Director
    Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship
    Senior Lecturer
  • Brenda Nolby

    Jam Hops
    America's Top Small Business Winner
  • Melissa Bercier

    Founder & President
    Couch Clarity
  • Rishi Popat

    Popat Orthodontics & Madison Pediatric Dentistry
    Community Leader, Lecturer, Inventor
  • Felicia Sinusas

    Associate Director of Publicity
    Harvard Business Review Press
  • Desiree Browne

    Senior Manager, Digital Content and Education
    Tory Burch Foundation
  • Richard Green

    Executive Editor
    Lexington Herald-Leader

10 Categories Honoring the Best Small Businesses in America

Each applicant will have the opportunity to opt into up to five categories.

  • Growth Accelerators

    Awarded to the business that demonstrates the most creative and effective strategy for growth. This could involve unique marketing tactics, product innovation, or exceptional customer service strategies.

  • Community Champions

    This category honors businesses that have not only grown but have also positively impacted their local community. This could be through job creation, community service projects, or by fostering a strong community around their business.

  • Micro-Business Leaders

    This award recognizes small businesses with 1-5 employees that have built a profitable and thriving business while remaining small and nimble.

  • Champions of Adaptability

    Honoring businesses that have overcome significant challenges or adversity in the past. This category celebrates grit and determination.

  • Customer Champions

    This category focuses on businesses that have shown exceptional customer service or have significantly increased their customer base through unique engagement strategies.

  • Global Stars

    Awarded to a business that has successfully entered new international markets or significantly increased its global footprint over the past year.

  • Digital Innovators

    Recognizes businesses that have effectively incorporated new technologies or automated solutions to scale their operations, improve the customer experience, or innovate their product/service offerings.

  • Enduring Businesses

    For businesses that have shown long-term growth and sustainability over many years. Should be for companies in business for more than 10 years.

  • The Disruptors

    For businesses that have introduced or created a brand-new product or service or have built a company that innovates beyond traditional business structure or typical ways of doing business. The business itself or how the business is structured should be ground-breaking, new, or creative in nature.

  • Culture Champions

    For businesses that have built a vibrant and rewarding company culture and leveraged it to attract and retain employees who have together built a profitable and successful company through hard work, dedication, and commitment to the business’s goals and growth.


    10 Reasons to Apply for the CO— 100

    The CO— 100 is the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s expanded small business awards program. Read on to find out more about the program and how to apply.

    Read more

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    CO— 100: Terms & Conditions, Awards, and Program Rules

    A complete guide to the terms and conditions, awards, and program rules surrounding the 2024 CO— 100.

    Read more

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    2024 Presented By:

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    Thank You to Our Sponsors:

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    The annual list of CO— 100 includes thriving, successful companies that are committed to growing the American economy and supporting their local communities.

    2023 Winners and Finalists

    Our 2023 small business awards highlighted seven finalists, including one grand prize winner, among a notable group of 70 honorees from across the United States. These businesses, all evaluated on characteristics such as business growth, ability to overcome challenges, innovative strategies for success, and community engagement, have distinguished themselves as trailblazers in the small business community.

    2023 Winner CO— Profile

    Elderly Instruments

    Elderly Instruments, the grand prize winner of our 2023 America’s Top Small Business awards contest, not only sells musical instruments but strives to make music more accessible.

    Read Their Story

    Outdoor image of Elderly Instruments' painted building with the sky in the background.

    2023 Finalists

    Our seven finalists of 2023 stood out among a robust group of applicants as small businesses that represent innovation, resilience, determination, and a commitment to creating jobs and supporting their communities.

    Read the Stories of the 2023 Finalists

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