Annette Patterson

From its humble roots at the Grandin Co-Lab as a Shark-tank like mentoring competition to its own home base in Vinton, The Advancement Foundation’s Gauntlet program has spread far beyond the Roanoke Valley to Rockbridge County and the Alleghany Highlands. Now in partnership with UVA-Wise and Opportunity Southwest, The Gauntlet is coming to far southwest Virginia.  Switching to a mostly-virtual mentoring program since the start of the pandemic has allow them to work with more far-flung business startups and entrepreneurs. The Advancement Foundation has also announced a second major grant of almost 1 million dollars, that will be used to turn an industrial property in Buena Vista into a business accelerator. The Advancement Foundation executive director is Annette Patterson: