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Irondequoit native wins contest for his 'great idea'

Rochester Business Journal
February 27, 2013

Michael Chatfield, a former account planner at Rochester branding agency Partners + Napier Inc., has earned the top prize at a national competition centered on creative thinking.

On Feb. 22, Chatfield, a native of Irondequoit, won “The Greatest Idea Never Bought” competition sponsored by creative digital agency Beyond International and New York City-based creative agency General Assembly.

The contest involved an open call for creative thinkers and social media enthusiasts to submit the concept for an original idea or project through social media photo-sharing website Instagram, along with a short explanation of what the idea involved.

Chatfield’s idea was for the creation of an ultra-safe subscription car service targeted at women in New York City. He said the idea is meant to address the safety and security concerns of the modern woman.
The contest was narrowed down to eight finalists, who each gave a two-minute presentation on Feb. 22 during Social Media Week in New York City. The finalists pitched their idea to a panel of judges that included marketing representatives from General Assembly, ESPN and music streaming site Spotify.

Judging was based on creativity, feasibility, visual representation, explanation and overall concept. Chatfield said the judges choose his idea because it presented a real problem and a real solution.

As the winner, Chatfield received a trophy and a $500 scholarship for classes and workshops at General Assembly.

“The idea was inspired by my personal experiences with a lack of safe, reliable transportation late at night, as well as recent news events bringing attention to safety risks for women,” said Chatfield, who works in New York City as director of continuing education for Miami Ad School, but still calls Rochester home on weekends.

“It was a great feeling to win a contest that encourages real world creativity and gives individuals the opportunity to apply their ideas in a practical way.”

For more on the contest, visit

(c) 2013 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email

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