What is AVANZAR?
The Avanzar Business Accelerator Program, led by Zachary Barker, a certified economic developer (CEcD) with over 20 years of expertise in entrepreneurial incubator and accelerator programming, aims to equip entrepreneurs with the necessary tools and knowledge to build, execute, and sustain their dream businesses. Through a comprehensive curriculum, participants will engage in courses covering key topics such as developing actionable business plans, designing scalable sales and marketing models, accessing State and local economic development incentives, and gaining proficiency in crucial technologies like CRM, marketing automation, and ChatGPT.
The Avanzar Business Accelerator Program aims to foster an inclusive and supportive environment where entrepreneurs can develop confidence in themselves and their business. By utilizing a design process, participants will gain clarity and build a simple yet effective plan with key execution activities that will serve as the foundation for their business success.
To qualify for Avanzar, applicants must meet key criteria:
- Their businesses must be Hispanic, minority, Veteran, or women-owned, operating and based in Colorado
- Applicants must also demonstrate an active pursuit of business growth in size and/or revenue over the next three years
- Participants must either be or become members of the Colorado Springs Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
- Commitment to completing no less than 8 accelerator training sessions over 3 months
Meet Zachary Barker
Hailing from Colorado Springs, Colorado, Zachary Barker is a certified economic developer who specializes in developing and delivering entrepreneur-led economic development strategies, acceleration training programs and sustainable support systems for community and economic development organizations. After spending near 20 years in entrepreneur growth consulting and community development, Zachary has established a sustainable and scalable methodology for building entrepreneurship ecosystems, driving growth through a clear, easy-to-execute growth blueprint model. Specifically focused on communities seeking economic diversification, Zachary’s goal is to deliver support models that allow communities to define metrics and measures that fit the local vision of success.
Zachary is recognized as an expert economic development professional by multiple organizations including the International Economic Development Council (IEDC), International Business Innovation Association (InBIA), and Oklahoma University’s Economic Development Institute. He has successfully built and accelerated entrepreneur ecosystems in Nashville, Tennessee; Lafayette, Louisiana; and Colorado Springs, Colorado. In addition to his economic development expertise, Zachary is also recognized as an expert trainer in revenue growth and support consulting for entrepreneurs.
Zachary holds a master of science degree in economic development from Murray State University, as well as a bachelor of business administration degree from Middle Tennessee State University. He is happily married to his beautiful wife, Dr. Nancy Dubuisson Barker, and is daddy to two rescue dogs, Millie the Bean and Java Lava.