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Boundless Futures Foundation Announced Inaugural EmpowHer Women Entrepreneur Grants

Boundless Futures Foundation is a private foundation founded by Soon and McKeel Hagerty. They recently announced its inaugural EmpowHer grants to three women entrepreneurs for a total of $60,000. The founders are Tatiana Freeman of Nosh Posh, Tina Arroyo of Spectacle Society and Stephanie Blanchard of Artisan Joy. The Foundation’s first Her Village nonprofit grant recipients, Traverse Connect and the Center for Women and Enterprise, will receive a total of $60,000.

Soon and McKeel Hagerty, founders of the Boundless Futures Foundation

Boundless Futures Foundation is unlocking the potential of individuals and communities. This is achieved by providing financial support and leadership resources for aspiring female entrepreneurs who are building businesses that either address today’s biggest social issues or have an impact element embedded in their business model. The Foundation also supports mission-aligned nonprofits throughout the US.

“We are truly inspired by the hundreds of grant applications we received. We feel encouraged by the ventures that these female founders are championing. As an entrepreneur myself, it is rewarding to highlight innovative solutions and business models that include sustainable practices, ethical sourcing or unique approaches to solving social issues,” said Soon Hagerty. “Boundless Futures Foundation believes that investing in individuals and nonprofit organizations will not only benefit the recipients directly but also contribute to a ripple effect of positive impact throughout society.”

Making a boundless impact

The grant recipients are carefully selected business owners who align with Boundless Futures Foundation’s mission to empower and uplift female entrepreneurs and like-minded nonprofit organizations.

Tatiana Freeman’s idea for Minnesota-based Nosh Posh grew out of her own experience. She saw how healthy changes in diet and food choices can improve lives. Her business offers healthy snack boxes sourced from small, female- and BIPOC-owned producers. She and stocks branded vending machines intended to provide healthy alternatives in ‘food desert’ pockets of the community. Thanks to the Boundless Futures Foundation, Nosh Posh will receive a $25,000 grant to further its work to change the pattern of low access to healthy food in North Minneapolis and beyond.

“For me, being an entrepreneur is about solving problems and creating solutions for people,” said Tatiana Freeman, Founder of Nosh Posh. “The Boundless Futures Foundation grant will allow me to scale my business. I will be able to reach more people and raise awareness for delicious healthy snack alternatives. Access to healthy food shouldn’t be about income or the value of your humanity. The Foundation’s support is a beacon of hope for others striving to break barriers and make an impact.”

EmpowHer women entrepreneur grants

Tina Arroyo, ABOC, is an optician. She opened her business, Spectacle Society, after recognizing an industry trend of poor personal service. When she opened Spectacle Society in December 2020, Arroyo emphasized individualized custom-curated appointments and stocking handcrafted frames by small independent producers in her business model. Giving back to the community has been a pillar of her business since the opening. In 2023, she collected donations of new and gently used glasses to benefit housebound and underserved seniors in Detroit. Spectacle Society will receive a grant of $20,000 to scale both her business model and giving efforts.

Artisan Joy founder Stephanie Blanchard utilizes her media platform to amplify creative entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds and artistic disciplines. She is especially supportive of women and people from underrepresented groups. Artisan Joy publishes an online and print magazine featuring in-depth interviews with creative entrepreneurs, photos of their art and goods and information on where consumers can purchase them. Blanchard’s vision is for established and aspiring creative entrepreneurs to have a destination for inspiration, business tips and publicity. Boundless Futures Foundation will award Artisan Joy a grant of $15,000 to support her platform’s growth into new markets.

Her Village women entrepreneur grants

Traverse Connect is the lead economic development organization for Michigan’s Grand Traverse region. The organization provides programming developed to support women at each stage of their careers, to grow as emerging leaders, develop their businesses and to gain the skills needed to grow as community entrepreneurs and leaders. Boundless Futures Foundation will award Traverse Connect a $30,000 Her Village grant. The grant will be applied over two years toward scholarships for women participating in three of their programs.

“This grant allows us to provide a 50 percent scholarship to female leaders for professional development programs. This will remove a cost-prohibitive barrier to entry and create greater access,” said Brenda McLellan, Vice President of Investor Engagement for Traverse Connect. “We feel honored that the Boundless Futures Foundation shares in our commitment. We seek to foster a collaborative network of entrepreneurs and change-makers in the Traverse City region.”

In addition, Boundless Futures Foundation will award the Center for Women and Enterprise (CWE) a $30,000 Her Village grant. The grant will fund their female entrepreneurship programming. For over 25 years, CWE has been helping aspiring female entrepreneurs and women business owners in New England launch, build and grow their businesses. The funding will provide greater access to the resources, tools and support they need to achieve success. 

Paving the way for transformative impact

Having seen first-hand the power of what a woman entrepreneur can do to make an impact on her family, community and society, Soon and McKeel Hagerty hope their Foundation will help level the playing field for funding female entrepreneurs, who currently only receive about 2 percent of total start-up venture capital dollars in the US. The Foundation supports women entrepreneurs and like-minded non-profit organizations through a trifecta of resources:

  • Empower EmpowHer grants of up to $25,000 are awarded to female entrepreneurs who are at least 22 years old and are in the early stages of starting a business that addresses a social issue or has a purpose-driven concept embedded in its business model.
  • Embrace An Advisory Circle of seasoned female entrepreneurs offers resources including leadership development, skills-building assistance, mentorship and networking opportunities to support grantees. Their goal is to foster the development of the Foundation’s grant recipients. Embrace seeks to ensure greater strategic-growth thinking, future financial sustainability and peer-to-peer networking.
  • Elevate other nonprofits that pave the way for female business owners. Her Village grants of up to $30,000 are awarded to eligible 501(c)(3) organizations that benefit female entrepreneurs.

Learn more about Boundless Futures Foundation, apply for funding or obtain other resources by visiting boundlessfutures.org. 

About Boundless Futures Foundation

Founded in September 2023, by Soon and McKeel Hagerty, Boundless Futures Foundation provides financial support and leadership resources to aspiring women entrepreneurs 22 years of age and older so they can have a boundless impact on society. The Foundation empowers women entrepreneurs in the United States. It provides grant funding to individuals in the early stages of starting a business that solves a social issue and to mission-aligned nonprofits. The Foundation also provides access for individual grantees to an Advisory Circle, a supportive network during their entrepreneurial journey. For more information, visit boundlessfutures.org.

Interested in reading more about women entrepreneurs making a difference in society? Read about Karen Palka’s Michigan-based nonprofit here.

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