My name is Eboné Graham, and I am an Opportunity Asheville Liaison. It is my job to ensure that non-majority and low-to-moderate income earners have access to the resources available through Mountain BizWorks and Western Women’s Business Center to grow their businesses.
I also work closely with Eagle Market Streets Development Corporation and the IDA Program to help non-majority business owners access funding through a reimbursement grant offered by the City of Asheville.
When interfacing with either Mountain BizWorks or Western Women’s Business Center, every business owner that applies for workshops or coaching must submit their ID and taxes. By sharing financial documentation, these agencies are able to identify the programs and funding available to help those who need income based assistance. After an applicant’s income is determined to meet Opportunity Asheville eligibility, they are sent to me.
As the Opportunity Liaison, it is my responsibility to intake Opportunity Asheville clients, build their file and locate the best agency for them to work with based on where they are in developing their businesses as well as their business goals.
I take my role seriously because as a business owner who is also of the non-majority, low to moderate income earning persuasion, I know first hand the challenges of building a business with a lack of funding. It is a joy to share the educational and funding sources that are focused on serving those in a similar situation as myself.
Entrepreneurship is a path out of poverty, and Opportunity Asheville is dedicated to ensuring that everyone has access to the resources needed to build a business regardless of their income. With accountability, determination and community support, overcoming poverty can be a reality.