Truist Foundation Names Centro Community Partners As Top Grant Recipient at the Inspire Awards

Hosted by Greg Olsen, the pitch-style grant program provided funding, yearlong support program for seven nonprofit finalists
Apr 26, 2024 12:00 PM ET
Campaign: Truist Foundation
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Truist Foundation announces top grant recipients at its second Inspire Awards, held at the Knight Theater in Charlotte, N.C., on Wednesday, April 24, 2024. L-R: Truist Financial Chairman and CEO Bill Rogers, Immigrants Rising National Entrepreneurship Manager Denea Joseph (second place), Centro Community Partners Founder and CEO Arturo Noriega (first place and audience favorite), Truist Foundation President Lynette Bell, and Sportscaster and Former NFL Player Greg Olsen, who served as host.

CHARLOTTE, N.C., April 26, 2024 /3BL/ - Truist Foundation awarded Centro Community Partners with the top recognition at the second Inspire Awards, a pitch-style grant program celebrating nonprofits from across the country that showcased innovative technology solutions to support entrepreneurs from undercapitalized communities.

Each finalist shared their vision in a three-minute pitch video and an on-stage interview. The Inspire Awards event culminated with the Truist Foundation team awarding Centro Community Partners with a $250,000 grant to help bring its technology solution to life. The organization also was named the Audience Favorite by attendees of the event, earning a $75,000 grant. Centro Community Partners will use the grant funding to provide an AI-generated journey through a virtual hub of resources for low- to moderate-income entrepreneurs.

"This award isn't just for us, it's for our entire community. The impact will be far reaching and deep," said Arturo Noriega, founder and CEO of Centro Community Partners. "The support from the Truist Foundation Inspire Awards will enable us to make investments in engineering, marketing and new team members who will help us provide innovative solutions to the barriers that so many entrepreneurs face—in languages that are familiar to them and with a cultural relevancy that is critical to helping diverse small business owners thrive."

Truist Foundation collaborated with Solve, an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), to help identify nonprofits with technology-based ideas to help support, grow and develop small businesses in underserved communities and create lasting change.

"Embracing innovative technology is paramount for nonprofits committed to strengthening small businesses. Centro Community Partner's solution showcases the transformative potential of technology to promote growth and development in the small business ecosystem," said Lynette Bell, president of Truist Foundation. "The Truist Foundation Inspire Awards provide a platform to elevate nonprofits that are driven by passion, attuned to the needs of small business owners and pioneering innovative solutions that better the communities they serve."

A second-place grant of $150,000 was awarded to Immigrants Rising, whose solution employs a gamification learning hub to help remove barriers to traditional employment for those who want to earn a sustainable income through small business ownership. The runners-up each received a $25,000 grant to help implement their solutions.

The Inspire Awards ceremony was held on Wednesday, April 24, 2024, at the Knight Theater in Charlotte. The event was hosted by American football sportscaster and former NFL player Greg Olsen. Bell, Olsen and Truist Financial Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Bill Rogers announced the grant recipients.

To learn more about all seven finalists and how Truist Foundation supports small businesses, visit

About Truist Foundation

Truist Foundation is committed to Truist Financial Corporation's (NYSE: TFC) purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities. The Foundation, an endowed private foundation established in 2020 whose operating budget is independent of Truist Financial Corporation, makes strategic investments in a wide variety of nonprofit organizations centered around two focus areas: building career pathways to economic mobility and strengthening small businesses to ensure all communities have an equal opportunity to thrive. Embodying these focus areas are the Foundation's leading initiatives – the Inspire Awards and Where It Starts. Learn more at

SOURCE Truist Foundation

For further information: Kristen Fraser, Truist,