home 2020 Lee School Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Lee School Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship


Las Vegas, April 2020 – The Lee Business School at UNLV has created a $1,000,000 Lee School Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurship – leeprize.com – with the goal of discovering and funding innovative technologies and solutions that make the food and beverage, hospitality, casino, sports and entertainment and travel industries a safe place for employees and guests in the post pandemic world.

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About: The joint collaboration and partnership between the Ted and Doris Lee Family Foundation and the Lee Business School is an effort to accelerate the innovation and problem solving necessary to chart the road ahead.

The Prize believes that UNLV and other universities and innovation communities can be both beacons and bridges for the Las Vegas community and other cities around the world whose economies depend meaningfully on tourism.

The knowledge base of institutions can provide a light to inform and ultimately provide hope to communities and the hospitality, travel, sports and entertainment industries which have been uniquely devastated by the closures caused by the virus. Universities and innovators can provide a bridge to find ways for people to carry on in a safer and more sustainable way, when the worst of the pandemic has passed. Together, the Lee Family Foundation, UNLV and the innovation that will come from this prize can perhaps allow us all to cross that bridge sooner.


Will guest pillows need to be disposable or will people travel with their own pillows?
How will we valet park cars so it is safe for the valet and the guest?
How do we clean a hotel shuttle bus?
How do bellmen clean and handle bags?
How do we best clean and sterilize hotel rooms?

How do you clean gaming chips rapidly?
Can UV light technology be used to clean paper currency?
Is it possible to use disposable covers on slot machine buttons?
Can we rapidly and cost effectively bring to market innovative ways of dividing players on the casino floor while maintaining a fun environment?

Sports and Entertainment
How do you fill a stadium or arena and be mindful of social distancing requirements?
How will groups who purchase tickets be seated together while safely maintaining social distancing from other groups?
How can we use technology to schedule the arrival and departure times of fans to prevent crowds from forming at entries and exits?

How do you surgically clean an airliner and keep it on schedule?
What is the best process to take passenger temperatures at airports? What technologies and machines can we put in place to track testing results, temperatures and sanitize passengers prior to boarding aircraft?
Do we need travel clothes that are made of antimicrobial fabrics?
What contact tracing technologies should be developed and deployed by airlines?

Food and Beverage
How do you safely seat the most people in high rent, urban dining rooms?
What cooling, comfortable mask options can you offer chefs in high temperature kitchens?
How can you rapidly and safely clean tableside condiments without everything becoming disposable, single serving packages?
Develop a software that integrates the multiple food delivery platforms to a central dashboard that can be processed through a restaurant’s POS system

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Lee Business School at UNLV hosts COVID-19 entrepreneur competition – KTNV


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