2019-2020 Wall of Honor Recipient:
Katie Wilson has been named the recipient of the 2019-2020 Pleasant Valley Community School District Wall of Honor Award. The Wall of Honor Program was established in 1999 to recognize distinguished alumni who have graduated from Pleasant Valley High School.
Wilson graduated from PVHS in 2001 and has since become the Founder and CEO of her own company – TapOnIt.
During her time at Pleasant Valley, Wilson was a very talented student who maintained four years on the Academic Honor Roll. She was also engaged in many extracurricular activities, spending four years as a Varsity Cheerleader, and participating in the student ambassador program and choir. After graduating from high school, Wilson took her ambition to Iowa State University on a full academic scholarship, where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management and Accounting.
Before becoming an entrepreneur, Katie held positions with Mega Life and Health Insurance and The Quad City Times. It was when smartphone usage began growing, with everyone and everything being connected by the digital world, did she have an idea. On a mission to build a platform that would help to drive traffic, awareness and sales to local businesses using the power of text messaging; Katie and her co-founder/sister, Sara Castillo, launched TapOnIt in 2015. “I had an idea and realized that I wanted to focus on building and growing my own business so I could make more of a direct impact,” Wilson said. “I quit my job that I loved and began the journey of launching a startup. It was the scariest thing I’ve ever done.” Since founding the company, TapOnIt has evolved into a major national player in SMS/MMS consumer engagement. TapOnIt Technology provides a software platform that uses personalized MMS and an interactive mobile experience to help brands engage, grow and further monetize their consumer databases via text. TapOnIt Mobile Deals, a new customer acquisition tool for brands, is building a nationwide database of consumers that have opted-in to receive offers and promotions from a wide variety of businesses via text. TapOnIt is currently active in 37 cities across 14 states, with over 700 businesses using it just in the Quad Cities. When asked what TapOnIt means to her, Wilson said, "Local Businesses and communities are what make cities unique, and I don’t want to live in a city that is just like every other city. I want a community that is strong and special... TapOnIt was created to drive people to find things to do, see, eat, and buy in their local communities – and my family is proud that it all started in our hometown of Bettendorf!”
Some of Wilson’s accomplishments, accolades, and awards are as follows:
- Editor & Publishers Magazine ‘25 Under 35 People to Watch’ (2014)
- ‘Top Ten Digital Programs’ by Editor & Publishers Magazine (2014)
- TapOnIt named “Business of the Year” by Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce (2018)
- DMN News “40 Under 40 Award” (2019)
Wilson is a mother of two Pleasant Valley students and when not working, spends her time at her children’s activities, as well as generously donating her time to local organizations like the Red Cross, Big Brothers Big Sisters, the PV Educational Foundation, and much more. TapOnIt is also dedicated to the QC community through volunteerism and monetary donations of over $100,000 to various non-profits.