Class of 2017’s Gerardo Interiano gives an update on his Personal Leadership Project, the Hispanic Impact Fund, and reflects on how PLS has contributed to its recent success.

Back in 2016, the Hispanic Impact Fund was simply an idea. It was a seed that had been planted at the Austin Community Foundation where I had the opportunity to serve on the Board of Governors with other community-minded leaders. As I was applying for the Presidential Leadership Scholars Class of 2017, I knew that this program would be my Presidential Leadership Project. In the end, PLS proved to be an essential component in helping us launch this fund and put a structure in place to make it sustainable.

From the lessons that we learned around fundraising and relationship building to advocacy and succession planning, PLS was instrumental in ensuring that we set a solid foundation for the Hispanic Impact Fund to launch and thrive over time. This month, the Austin Community Foundation announced that in 2022 they will distribute $355,000 to 28 Latino-serving nonprofits in Central Texas and thereby surpass over $1 million donated to the community since its inception just four years ago.  

As a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, I think our motto also applies to PLS:  “What starts here changes the world.”

Gerardo Interiano

Class of 2017

Technology and Information

Gerardo Interiano partnered with the Austin Community Foundation to create a Hispanic Impact Fund that will invest in nonprofit and social enterprises. This fund has already raised $500,000 and will take a data-informed approach towards eliminating the opportunity gaps that exist around early childhood education, healthy communities, and entrepreneurship within the Hispanic community in Central Texas.