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Halcyon Wins Grant for Entrepreneurs

The D.C. nonprofit, Halcyon, which runs an incubator and programs for social entrepreneurs, is putting plans in motion to build its own investor group focused on social impact investments after winning grant money from the U.S. Department of Commerce.

A total of $300,000 over three years from the department’s Regional Innovations Strategies Program will support the hires and operations necessary to create the network.

After applying for the federal grant in April, Halcyon is looking to bring a director on board to bring it to fruition and “do the blocking and tackling on a day-to-day basis,” said Ryan Ross, chief innovation officer for Halcyon, which supports startups with a social mission and houses them in its Georgetown digs. The organization’s team is both building a pipeline of startup founders raising capital and engaging investors — people interested in working with early-stage companies, whether they have investing experience or not — to build its cohort.

“There’s still a lot of things to lock down, but I think we already have our eyes on a lot of the relationships and individuals and partnerships to move pretty quickly on this,” Ross said. “We think once we get this engine up and running, it’s going to be a really incredible amount of financial support for these entrepreneurs and really bridge that capital gap in the region.”