Press Releases

San Diego Teens Take Home Two Wins from National Business Competition

June 19, 2014

On Wednesday, June 18, in Washington, D.C., Junior Achievement USA® selected teen entrepreneurs from La Jolla Country Day—who own and operate the company Nalu from San Diego—as 3rd place winners of the 2014 U.S. JA Company of the Year competition. The team was selected from among 15 competing student companies representing JA operations from across the country. 

Nalu—a JA company formed by the La Jolla Country Day students—created the only eco-friendly scented and colored surf wax available on the market.

In addition to taking 3rd place, Nalu won the FedEx Access Award. The student company, as evaluated by a special FedEx jury, presented the best business plan with the potential to create jobs and grow small businesses with environmental sustainability.

The teens also vied for the Marketing Award for the best commercial and Ingenuity Award for the most creative products at the local competition on May 3, 2014.

"I have watched these students throughout the year as they started and grew their business. They truly demonstrate how fostering entrepreneurship can help spur economic growth through innovation and job creation,” said Joanne Pastula, president and CEO of Junior Achievement of San Diego.

During the national competition, the teen-run companies participated in a trade fair on Capitol Hill where they promoted their products and pitched their companies to a panel of judges comprised of business leaders. The companies were evaluated on their financial performance, on an interview with the judging panel and on a formal presentation.

The annual U.S. JA Company of the Year Competition is a contest of business skills, ingenuity and innovation that focuses on the accomplishments of U.S. JA Company Program ® students, ages 15-19, during the 2013-2014 academic year. Currently reaching nearly 15,000 U.S. students annually, JA Company Program gives teens the skills to start and run their own businesses under the mentorship of a local business volunteer.

For more news and events at Junior Achievement of San Diego, please follow the nonprofit on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.


JUNIOR ACHIEVEMENT OF SAN DIEGO, INC. works locally to impact 52,000 students in K-12 classrooms in the 2013-2014 school year. Junior Achievement’s volunteer-based programs teach kids how to get a job, start a business, and how money works. For more information on programs in San Diego and Imperial Counties, please visit