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The Second Annual Elevate Creatives Fund

The Elevate Creatives Fund is jointly presented by Wave, one-stop money management for small business owners, and the Shorty Awards. The $120,000 USD fund is designed to remove financial barriers for creators and small creative business owners to fuel creative entrepreneurship.

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Shortlisted applicants will each receive:

The six recipients will each receive:


All applicants must be U.S. or Canada-based and identify as one of the following:


Follow the key dates below (the deadline cut-off time is 11:59 PM Eastern Time).

Round 1: One-Page Application (May 22 - July 31, 2024)

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Round 2: 1-3 Minute Video Pitch (After the Shortlist is announced)

Shortlisted applicants will be announced publicly and notified via email to submit a short video (2-minute max) for the final pitch.

Application administrative fee (Waived if you have or sign up for a free Wave account):


A special judge panel from the Shorty Awards' judging community, the Real Time Academy, will be reviewing the applications and the recipients will be selected based on the following criteria:

Selection process: the fund jury will select five of the six recipients. The previous recipients will have the opportunity to vote on the sixth recipient this year.

Jury members include:

Christen Nino De Guzman
Founder, Clara for Creators
Christoph Becker_headshot-1
Christoph Becker
Chief Creative Officer, Whalar Group
Goldie Chan
Founder, Head of Content and Creative, Warm Robots
Josh Zimmerman
CEO, Creator Coach
Kaya Yurieff
Creator Economy Reporter, The Information
Kerry Reynolds
Vice President Marketing, Wave
Jasmine Enberg
Jasmine Enberg
VP & Principal Analyst, Social Media & Creator Economy, EMARKETER


$20,000 USD from the $120,000 USD cash fund will be distributed to each of the six recipients by December 31, 2024. Payment will be made directly to the bank account provided by each of the eligible recipients. The bank account must be associated with the individual applicant or their registered business. The recipients may be asked to provide proof of identity or their registered business, such as tax forms from the previous year. The Elevate Creatives Fund, the Shorty Awards, and Wave accept no responsibility for any tax implications. Applicants must seek their own independent financial advice.

Applicants may be asked to provide 2023 tax returns to verify eligibility as an independent creator or creative professional. By submitting the application, the applicants give permission to Shorty Awards and Wave to create and use text, photographs, videos, and/or audio recordings of their name, voice, likeness, and performance (collectively, “Recordings”) for all purposes and in all media and formats now known or later created including, without limitation, all promotional materials, in connection with the Elevate Creatives Fund.


The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!

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