Austin FC and Q2 Announce the 2024 Austin FC Dream Starter Competition

By Q2

25 Mar, 2024

The fourth annual venture funding competition will award $100,000 to a Central Texas-based underrepresented entrepreneur

Austin, TEXAS (March 25, 2024) – Austin FC and Q2 Holdings Inc. announced today the launch of the 2024 Austin FC Dream Starter Competition, presented by Q2. The fourth annual business initiative invites Austin entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups to apply and compete for $100,000 in “Dream Starter” funds to accelerate their entrepreneurial venture. The online application is now open to eligible entities and will close on Monday, April 15. The venture that is selected will be announced on Friday, May 24.

“We’re thrilled to announce this impactful initiative with Q2 for the fourth consecutive year,” said Austin FC President Andy Loughnane. “It’s very important that our Club continues to play a role in fostering the growth of underrepresented businesses across Austin’s entrepreneurial community, and there’s no better way to do so than through the Austin FC Dream Starter Competition.”

“We are excited to partner with Austin FC once again in support of underrepresented local entrepreneurs through the annual Dream Starter Competition,” said Q2 CEO Matt Flake. “At Q2, our mission is to build strong and diverse communities by strengthening their financial institutions and we look forward to watching this year’s winning venture expand their business vision and impact here in Central Texas.”

From the initial applicant group, five (5) finalists will be notified on Wednesday, May 8, of their selection to participate in a Pitch Contest on Thursday, May 23, at Q2 Stadium. Each finalist’s presentation will be evaluated by a diverse group of representatives from Austin FC, Q2 Holdings Inc., and other executives from the Austin entrepreneurial community. The Austin FC Dream Starter Competition winner will be honored with a check presentation during halftime at the Austin FC vs. Portland Timbers match on Wednesday, May 29.

The Austin FC Dream Starter Competition combines Q2’s mission with Austin FC’s inclusivity through equity community pillar. The aim is to connect underrepresented entrepreneurs with the resources needed to build profitable, high-growth companies. The “Dream Starter” funds will aid a Central Texas entrepreneur in overcoming financial barriers to achieve success. Click here for a complete list of terms and conditions and to apply for the 2024 Austin FC Dream Starter Competition.

Previous Winners


In 2023, SocialNote Co-founder Vanessa Newton, was selected as the Austin FC Dream Starter Competition winner. SocialNote is a one-of-a-kind web application designed for school-based social workers to manage interactions with students and families. Documentation of interactions with students and families is critical but often the last task to be completed because there are so many other needs to tend to. SocialNote aims to provide a platform that removes the stress, dread and burnout of case management so the job feels sustainable, and the professional field of school-based mental health retains high-quality providers.

CDL Changing Lanes Driving School

In 2022, Delbert Crawford, Founder and Owner of CDL Changing Lanes Driving School, was selected as the Austin FC Dream Starter Competition winner. Changing Lanes CDL Driving School teaches individuals from diverse backgrounds how to safely drive a commercial vehicle. The school's training programs help its students, many of whom are unemployed, gain the skills necessary for jobs driving commercial vehicles, changing the trajectory of their lives.

At Ease Rentals Corporation

In 2021, Anthony Gantt, CEO of At Ease Rentals Corporation, was selected as the inaugural Austin FC Dream Starter Competition winner. At Ease Rentals Corporation is a short-term rental platform helping military and federal employees and their families find government approved, temporary housing with less time and frustration.


About Austin FC

Austin FC joined Major League Soccer (MLS) as the League’s 27th club in January 2019. Austin FC officially began competing in MLS in April 2021 and played its first match at home on June 19, 2021, in the new, 100% privately financed, state-of-the-art Q2 Stadium in Austin. In its second year, Austin FC finished the regular season 2nd in the Western Conference, while also making a run to the Western Conference Finals during the 2022 MLS Cup Playoffs.

Austin FC also operates Austin FC II, a professional-level development team which competes in MLS NEXT Pro and which won the league title during its inaugural season in 2023. In addition, Austin FC operates Austin FC Academy which is the fully funded developmental academy representing the highest level of competition for elite youth soccer players in Central Texas, while serving as the exclusive developmental pathway to MLS for the region’s most talented young players. Combined, Austin FC II and Austin FC Academy teams complete the pro player pathway between elite youth soccer (MLS NEXT) all the way to MLS, and allow for players to develop, improve, and move up to Austin FC or Austin FC II.

About Q2 Holdings, Inc.

Q2 is a leading provider of digital transformation solutions for financial services, serving banks, credit unions, alternative finance companies, and fintechs in the U.S. and internationally. Q2 enables its financial institutions and fintech companies to provide comprehensive, data-driven digital engagement solutions for consumers, small businesses and corporate clients. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, Q2 has offices worldwide and is publicly traded on the NYSE under the stock symbol QTWO. To learn more, please visit Follow us on LinkedIn and X to stay up to date.

Press Releases