EmPOWERED to Serve Business Accelerator™

The Business Accelerator is looking for a diverse pool of social and digital health entrepreneurs and organizations who are driving change through health justice in their communities.

Congratulations to the
National Business Accelerator 2022 Grant Recipients

The candidates participated in a six-week business training course that culminated in a virtual finale during which they:

  • Presented their business stories
  • Discussed why they’re leading with health equity
  • Described how their businesses are improving the health of their communities

Meet the finalists

Interested in the 2023 National Business Accelerator?
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1st Place:
Kanisha Ffriend
HeirBloom Co.

2nd Place:
Jinga Oglesby-Brihm
Empower Healthcare

Fan Favorite:
Kanisha Ffriend
HeirBloom Co.

Since we launched five years ago we have:

Made a health impact through organizations that address food insecurity, transportation, access to healthcare, STEM, youth education and more.

Gardener in front of his community garden

Provided MBA-style business
training to 93 social entrepreneurs
and 73 organizations 

Gardener in front of his community garden

Provided almost
$881,000 in
grant funding

Bay Area

Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Napa, Santa Clara, San Francisco, San Mateo, Solano, and Sonoma

The EmPOWERED to Serve Bay Area Business Accelerator 2022 grant recipients have been selected!


West Tennessee including Greater Memphis / Shelby County, North Mississippi, and rural Eastern Arkansas

The EmPOWERED to Serve Mid-South Business Accelerator 2022 grant recipients have been selected!


The EmPOWERED to Serve Hawai‘i Business Accelerator 2022 grant recipients have been selected!


The EmPOWERED to Serve Minnesota Business Accelerator 2022 grant recipients have been selected!

Driving change through health justice in communities

Through our training and grant program, you will test, validate, and activate innovation in real-time with the support of a team of mentors. Training will span subjects such as finance and fundraising, branding and marketing, behavioral psychology, design thinking methodologies, and customer experience design.

Business Accelerator social determinants of health graphic, does your solution impact one of these areas?

US citizen 18 years or older (with a pre-seed through series A company) can apply with qualified solutions that drive positive impact in areas such as:

  • Education
  • Healthcare Access
  • Food Security
  • Neighborhood Conditions
  • Transportation
  • Environmental Quality
  • Employment/Economic Stability
  • Housing
  • Health Innovation/Tech

General health and wellbeing programs or businesses that do not qualify:

  • One time health events
  • Gyms/Yoga Studios
  • Personal trainers
  • Food products (that do not meet AHA guidelines) and Juice/Coffee/Smoothie bars
  • Diet pills and weight loss supplements
  • Those that do not provide positive health equity impact

How do I apply?

There will be two application periods in 2022.

Please choose based on your location: Hawaii, Minnesota, Bay Area, Mid-South and/or as a national (anyone in US) candidate.

Watch the Empowered to Serve Business Accelerator Informational Call about the application process.


What happens if I am accepted into the program?

Accelerator candidates will learn ways to create a sustainable and scalable solution as well as how to tell their business story (the who you are and why you are the person to lead rather than the traditional “pitch” on what you do). The custom training will guide candidates through subjects including design thinking, customer discovery, market positioning, brand development and fundraising.

Learn more about the training.


Take your organization or business to the next level with this virtual, six-week training program for early-stage companies and social entrepreneurs making a health impact in their communities. You’ll get invaluable MBA-style business training and connect with other entrepreneurs, local industry leaders and the American Heart Association community.

Learn more about the accelerator.

Accelerator Alumni

Hear from our alumni on how the accelerator program impacted their business.

Watch EmPOWERED to Serve in Action

Videos that reflect the powerful impact EmPOWERED to Serve has in the community.

Stories that transform the world in which we live.