Christine Goodwin ’96 wanted every child’s school to be up-to-date, so she started WishStars, an online social fundraising and sourcing platform that connects classrooms with donors. For her efforts, the Virginia-based Center for Innovative Technology named her among its top 50 entrepreneurs.
The startup company’s mission, as stated on its website, is simple: To connect educators, families, and donors, simplify the process for fulfilling needs, and transform every K-12 classroom into an incubator for big ideas.
Goodwin, a mother of two and a full-time system and software engineer, was inundated with school fundraisers and classroom requests for donations. She knew other parents must also be overwhelmed with selling overpriced cookie dough or remembering to pick up glue sticks for the classroom. She wanted a better way for schools, parents, and communities to connect and support one another.
Inspired by existing social networking platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Kickstarter, Goodwin and a co-worker created WishStars. Goodwin would like for WishStars to become a powerful online community focused on meeting common goals and making a difference in children’s futures.
The CEO of WishStars, she is on the board of directors of the Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Innovation and Technology Council, also known as FredTech. Goodwin told The Free Lance-Star she hopes WishStars will someday employ many of the skilled software engineers in the Fredericksburg area who now commute to Northern Virginia.