Meet Maria Edvalson

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Maria EdvalsonMeet Innovator of the Week

Maria Edvalson
PickUp Patrol


Please provide your 30-second pitch about your company.

We’ve solved a problem that every parent, and school can relate to – reducing the chaos of afternoon school dismissal. PickUp Patrol is the better, safer way to get kids home from school. No notes. No phone calls. No problem.

Our cloud-based web application replaces the old note system, allowing parents to submit plan changes by computer or mobile device. Schools use our comprehensive tool to manage the full dismissal process. With PickUp Patrol, schools and parents now have a more convenient, efficient way to communicate plan changes and best of all, they have peace of mind knowing that their children are getting where they need to be.


Who or what was your best resource for starting your company?

team with batch MYPNThat would be Alpha Loft and their accelerator program, Accelerate NH. We’ve received tremendous support from the program directors, Mark Kaplan and Joshua Cyr and our mentor, Batch Batcheler. The workshops, networking events, meeting space, and connections offered through Alpha Loft have been invaluable and the 3-month accelerator has put us in a position to succeed. Because of their help, the road ahead is going to be a lot less rocky. If you have a startup or early stage company, this is the organization to get involved with.


What’s the best advice you have received?

“Just Try It “ – A startup is a big puzzle to figure out.  You don’t have to have all the answers from the beginning. Take an idea, test it out on a small scale (so you don’t risk too much time or money!), and evaluate the results. If something doesn’t work out, it’s not the end of the world. Just learn from it and move on.


What about the NH lifestyle appeals to you?

We moved here 12 years ago and never looked back. It’s been a great place to raise our family – awesome schools and lots to do. I love all the green, (we came from out west), the colonial villages, the mountains and beaches. Plus New Hampshire has a great sense of community and so many ways to get involved. Living here really gives you a chance to make difference.


What does the future look like for your company?

It’s an exciting time for Pickup Patrol. We’ve had some incredible opportunities comes our way and we’re working hard to make these connections matter. We just recently started reaching out to schools and the response has been very positive. These next 6 months will be key as we learn to navigate the ways of the school systems and build our customer base.


What was your biggest obstacle in starting your company and how did you overcome it?

Getting a startup off the ground take a tremendous amount of time and effort. There’s no money, you’re working ALL the time, you’re constantly changing directions, there’s so much to learn and so much to do. And it’s all done under this big umbrella of “What if it doesn’t work?” It can be pretty overwhelming.

Having great partners is key. We support each other through the lows and cheer each other through the highs. We’re there to share the load, offer a different view, and encourage each other to risk and grow. You could try to do it alone, but the journey is so much better with friends along for the ride.


Check out PickUp Patrol on LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.


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