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In the news: Eric Esteves

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In the news: Eric Esteves
Eric Esteves COURTESY PHOTO

Eric Esteves, a seasoned community leader, has been named the first executive director of the Boston Main Streets Foundation, a public-private initiative that supports 20 neighborhood Main Streets in the city and the businesses they serve.

Most recently executive director of the Lenny Zakim Fund, Esteves there raised significant funds and grew the organization’s revenue with a creative approach to cultivating a donor base. Those skills will allow the Main Streets Foundation to answer the call of Mayor Michelle Wu and her administration to challenge the status quo when it comes to expanding opportunities for small businesses.

Prior to working with the Zakim Fund, Esteves ran several small businesses and served in a number of nonprofit organizations, including The Boston Foundation, Lead Boston, YW and Root Cause. He once ran for a state representative seat in Roxbury against Gloria Fox and was for a time a photographer for the Banner.

Esteves graduated from Northeastern University with a bachelor’s in business administration and a masters in information systems.

“In Eric, our search committee found someone we believe will be a great partner in advancing the work of small businesses. Since 2007, the Foundation has provided grants and, during the pandemic, we were an essential lifeline to many small businesses. As our communities recover, we can and must do more. Eric will work shoulder-to-shoulder with our board of directors to ensure we achieve high goals. A strong Boston relies on strong neighborhoods,” said Foundation Board Chairman Joel Sklar.

Wu said: “As we continue to help our small businesses thrive and serve as anchors across Boston’s neighborhood, I’m excited for Eric Esteves’ leadership and look forward to the Foundation’s work to ensure that all of our local businesses are supported, and visitors can experience the vibrancy of Boston’s communities.”

Esteves said he is “honored and humbled” to take on the role of directing the Boston Main Streets Foundation. “The opportunity for growth is enormous, and I enthusiastically embrace the challenge to take the Foundation to a higher level,” he said.

Boston Main Streets Foundation, local news