Skip to content
Elevar Advisory Committee Meeting

Elevating local community members to lead and excel.

The Elevar Program

Reimagining the systems of leadership and decision-making to be inclusive, innovative, and equitable for all.

Elevar is an emergent leadership development program and social impact fund that provides community investments through grantmaking and program-related investments to emerging Latinx leaders and people of color. Through existing programs and partnerships with local nonprofit organizations, EVCF’s Elevar fund will create the connection point between existing education and leadership training programs, to the resources needed for emerging leaders to make their dreams a reality, while building economic power, and creating a more empowered and socially just community.

Our vision is to collectively build a community that embraces diversity, honors inclusivity, and actively works to change the systems that prevent communities of color from having a voice and leadership roles across all aspects of society. We will listen, learn and collaborate to activate community power, create space for community voice, and give the communities we serve an opportunity to create and implement ideas with, by and for communities of color throughout Eagle County.

Why Elevar?

Less than 30% of businesses in Eagle County are women owned and only 8% of all businesses are owned by a person of color, and even less for women of color. Even fewer people of color hold leadership roles in businesses, on nonprofit boards, and at decision-making tables within our community. EVCF has identified this gap and a need to create more equitable opportunities for people of color to grow as nonprofit leaders and successful business owners.

2023 Application Closed

You can click here to download a PDF version of the application to view and draft your submission before submitting on the link above.

Supporting Entrepreneurs

Elevar will provide a grant to entrepreneurs in Eagle County to accelerate their businesses to the next level. Entrepreneurs will receive training and support, mentorship, and become a part of a prestigious community of Vail Valley entrepreneurs! 

Our goals are to support the community with knowledge, training, and resources to launch a new business – or to take an existing company to the “next level.” 

  • We will select 5-7 entrepreneurs to receive our first grant.
  • Grant size will be up to $5,000, given once. You are eligible to reapply in future years.
  • Please note that this grant is only available to Latinx, Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color (BIPOC). 
  • Applications Open: October 16, 2023
  • Applications Close: November 15, 2023
  • Semifinalists selected: December 20, 2023
  • Semifinalist Interview: Week of January 8, 2024
  • Decision on Finalists: By the end of the month- January 2024

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • When will the application go live?
    • Applications will go live on October 16th by 5 pm and it will remain live until the 30th of November.
  • Is this for me?
    • We are looking for early stage entrepreneurs from the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community. “Early stage” means that you are in your initial stages of operation, growth, and product or service development. You may still be refining your concept, conducting market research, and/or building your minimum viable product (MVP).
  • Do I need to have revenue already?
    • This is not a requirement to receive the grant.
    • Early-stage startups usually have limited or no revenue, as you are focused on building a product, gaining initial customers, and establishing your place in the marketplace. If you do have revenue or other types of traction already in place, be sure to tell us in the application!
  • How developed should my idea or business be?
    • You should have a clear vision of what you are solving and a roadmap of how you will get there. Show us your skills and areas of expertise, and why you are the “right person” to be running this company.
    • We encourage you to use our application as much as a thought exercise for you to consider new angles of business development as it is for you to show us your expertise in this area. 
  • This is not the right time for me. Can I apply next year?
    • Elevar operates from a 3-year grant that we hope and expect to renew.
    • We expect that this opportunity will be available for years to come! 
  • What is the time commitment?
    • We will meet twice monthly for educational sessions ran by members of the community, and expect to have additional opportunities throughout the months such as company visits, fireside chats, and more.
  • Will you take equity in my company?
    • No!
  • What is expected of me in return?
    • We seek entrepreneurs who want to make a positive impact in our community! Our primary ask is that you give your best efforts to make your company a reality during and after the development period.
    • We also ask that you serve as a mentor for future entrepreneurs once your company is off the ground in order to give back to ELEVAR and EVCF. Pay it forward! 
    • All selected grantees will be required to go through a background check prior to program participation.
  • Can I be involved as a mentor or donor?
    • Yes! Consider applying to join the Steering Committee (info below.)
    • If you are interested in mentoring, please email Erin at
    • If you are interested in donating, please reach out to Grace Anshutz, Director of Development & Marketing at

 Elevar Advisory Board Callout Meeting
 Elevar Advisory Board Callout Meeting

Professional development and capital investments through grantmaking.

There are two key components that make up the Elevar program:

Members of the Elevar Steering Committee are identified by local nonprofit organizations and community leaders who have identified leadership potential among people of color or low-income members of our community who have had a lack of access to resources to advance their leadership journey.

  • The Elevar Steering Committee members will benefit from community-based peer support through small, tight-knit cohorts, community leader mentorship and other leadership development training in order to give them direct experience on a board and in philanthropic grantmaking.
  • The Elevar Steering Committee is comprised of 9-15 members who are responsible for creating an application process, identifying potential grantees, reviewing proposals, and ultimately recommend funding of 5-7 grantees (to be approved by the EVCF board). Elevar Steering Committee members are paid a stipend for participation to create more equitable opportunity to participate in the committee.

Elevar’s Advisory Board brings together diverse representatives of all stakeholders affected by our grantmaking to make funding decisions, the collective expertise, and experiences of the group leads to more effective and equitable grantmaking decisions and increased impact. Thank you to these individuals who have been selected to lead Elevar as Advisory Board members.

  • Arturo Zuniga
  • Luz Rios
  • Simone Lybarger 
  • Aileen Pagán-Rohwer 
  • Michelle Collins
  • Inés María Amuchástegui
  • Marcel Asprilla
  • Cecilia Galardo
  • Luz Parra
  • Cindy Ramos
  • Sofia Fecchino
  • Deisy Vazquez

2023 Elevar Staff Leads

  • < 30%


    Less than 30% of businesses in Eagle County are women owned and only 8% of all businesses are owned by a person of color, and even less for women of color. Even fewer people of color hold leadership roles in businesses, on nonprofit boards, and at decision-making tables within our community.

  • 18.5%


    of the population in the USA are Hispanic but just 4 percent of the executive ranks.


    See all the wasy we’re making an impact

  • Only 30%


    of junior managers say they have access to mentorship programs or on-the-job training.


    See how we are making change

Our Partners

Thank you to our partners who are committed to supporting entrepreneurs building sustainable and impactful businesses in the Eagle Valley community.

From our Partners at @mountainfamilyco Mountain Family Health Centers (MFHC):

MFHC seeks a Registered Nurse for their Avon Integrated Health Center in Chapel Square. The clinic’s mission is to improve the health of our community by providing equitable and affordable medical, behavioral, and dental healthcare for all.
To apply or learn more, please visit:
⛷🏂 Ready, set, shred! Join us for the ultimate snowy showdown on Vail Mountain!

🌱 Eagle Valley Community Foundation is thrilled that our program The Community Market has been selected as the proud beneficiaries of the Charitable Foundation of Slifer Smith & Frampton - Vail 4th Annual Skivenger Hunt Fundraiser!

⁉️WILL YOU JOIN US for a day of mountain magnificence for a good cause

📍 Where: Vail Mountain

📅 When: Saturday, April 6th

🔎 What: An epic on-mountain scavenger hunt with awesome prizes and even better vibes – all benefiting The Community Market's fight against food insecurity in our mountain community! 

✅ SECURE YOUR SPOT: Join in on this thrilling adventure for a cause! Register today to lock in your spot on the mountain:

🎿 Let's ski, laugh, and make a monumental impact together! It's time to show our mountain community the force of unity for a greater cause. 

🌟 #SkivengerHunt #CommunityMarket #MakingADifference #VailMountain
🏂¡Preparados, listos, triturados! ¡Únete a nosotros para el mejor enfrentamiento nevado en Vail Mountain!
🌱 La Fundación Comunitaria de Eagle Valley está encantada de que nuestro programa El Mercado Comunitario haya sido seleccionado como los orgullosos beneficiarios de la Fundación Caritativa de Slifer Smith & Frampton - Vail 4 to Anual Skivenger Hunt Fundraiser!
⁉️TE UNIRÁS A NOSOTROS para un día de magnificencia en la montaña por una buena causa
📍 DÓNDE: Vail Mountain
📅  CUÁNDO: Marquen sus calendarios para el sábado 6 de abril, ¡será un día inolvidable en las pistas!
🔎 LOS DETALLES: Correa para una caza de carroñeros en la montaña que bombea adrenalina! Traje, montar su equipo, y golpear las pistas para acumular puntos y perseguir premios sensacionales. Y aquí está la mejor parte: ¡Cada registro alimenta directamente la misión del mercado comunitario de combatir la inseguridad alimentaria en nuestra comunidad de montaña!
✅ ASEGURA TU LUGAR: ¡No pierdas la oportunidad de ser parte de esta emocionante aventura por una causa! Regístrese hoy para encerrarse en su lugar en la montaña:
🍽🍎The Community Market Dine Around- Call for Restaurant Partners

‼️The Vail Valley isn't an easy place to live, over 8,700 of our neighbors struggle with food insecurity, unsure where their next meal will come from. Service wages combined with high cost of housing creates a situation that challenges local community members and their employers, like you. We are working hard to build local support and understanding of our work in the business community, knowing that we all have to work together to make our ski town economy work.

✴️ Let's rally together and showcase the heart and soul of Eagle County through our upcoming Restaurant Week! As the mountains close down in April, we want to encourage our locals and visitors to support local businesses and local needs by dining out between April 9-14. 

🍲We extend a warm invitation to the culinary maestros of our community, to be a vital part of this extraordinary event. Picture it: your delectable dishes taking center stage, captivating taste buds and hearts alike. But there's more – by joining us, you're not just offering a feast for the senses; you're becoming a hunger-fighting hero!

For more information, please contact Eagle Valley Community Foundation's Director of Development and Marketing, Grace Anshutz at
EVCF's "Day in the Life Community Tour" provide the chance for you to learn more about the needs within our community, see the Eagle Valley Community Foundation programs in action and learn more from our customers and neighbors. This experience is an insightful educational opportunity for participants to not only engage with EVCF programs, but to also learn more about other volunteer opportunities and the broader needs throughout Eagle County. 

To learn more, contact Grace Anshutz at
Contact Us

Contact Us

How would you like to Get Involved? Check All That Apply