economic development

Job Posting: E-Center Program Manager and Outdoor Industry Director


Estes Park EDC’s mission includes helping to launch, support, and grow startups in the Estes Valley region. The E-Center programs and services are intended to serve startups and new businesses in our region. The Program Manager promotes and helps develop programs and services for startups in the Estes Valley region.

In addition, Estes Park EDC is placing an emphasis on attracting outdoor gear and apparel startups to the Estes Valley region. The E-Center Program Manager will lead efforts to attract and serve entrepreneurs and startups in the outdoor gear and apparel industry.  To serve a wider variety of startup industry clusters, you will access existing programs and services of our project Partners: 1) Innosphere, primarily through their industry-focused Program Directors and secondarily 2) Larimer SBDC.  An Innosphere Program Director supports startups through technology and product validation, entrepreneurial education, advisor matching, pilot/trial oversight, access to capital, and introductions to service providers and corporate strategic partners. The Larimer Small Business Development Center already serves as a partner for Estes Park EDC, and serves both new and existing small businesses.

 Innosphere has focused on high-growth companies in three major industry categories:

1.       Health Innovations (Digital Health, Medical Device, Diagnostics)

2.       Software & Hardware (Internet of Things, Sensors, Enterprise Software)

3.       Energy & Advanced Materials (Cleantech, Water, Transportation)

Estes Park EDC’s three major target industry categories include:

1.       Outdoor Industries (including outdoor gear and apparel)

2.       Professional Services (including health innovations and software)

3.       Craft Made Goods

The Program Manager will initially focus program efforts on the Outdoor Industry, but will be prepared to serve other industry categories through our partnership with Innosphere.

Duties and responsibilities

  • Establish and expand the Estes Valley’s network across the outdoor gear and apparel industry to help identify, shape, and drive entrepreneurial opportunities in the Estes Valley region. Expand the Estes Valley’s access to the innovation ecosystem in Colorado, and employ the existing Innosphere network to serve clients in other technology-driven industry sectors.

    • Examples include: finding, analyzing, and presenting new business opportunities in health innovation, energy & advanced materials, hardware & software.

  • Building and expanding the local network of business mentors, including part-year residents, to provide entrepreneurs access to an Estes Park-centered network of business expertise and potential angel investors.

    • Examples include: promoting and supporting the existing Estes Park Start-up Meetup as methods of identifying and serving clients; creating Estes Park-centered programs and events that engage local and regional entrepreneurs and mentors.

  • Executing technology and business due diligence on potential client companies.

    • Examples include: reviewing market opportunity, assessing intellectual property, and supporting the Innosphere screening team with industry knowledge.

  • Working collaboratively with client company management teams on business issues including strategy, operations, and fundraising.

    • Examples include: meeting with company founders on a weekly basis and holding them accountable to a development plan.

  • Helping raise funds from both private and public sources, helping build a sustainable program by the end of year three that will obtain funding from an appropriate mix of sources, including corporate sponsors, individual contributors and program fees. 


Qualifications include:

  • Business or technical degree, or strong career progression and experience related to startups and entrepreneurship desired

  • Market knowledge of outdoor gear/apparel industries preferred

  • Strong oral and written communication skills

  • History of teamwork and collaboration

  • Passionate about innovation and entrepreneurship

  • Evidence of leadership and experience in initiating, developing and delivering entrepreneurial programs

  • Ability to travel across the Colorado Front Range for company and industry meetings

  • Ability to research and adopt new technologies

  • InBIA ECM certification preferred

Working conditions/Physical requirements

Working out of office space with travel across the Front Range possible once/twice per week. No physically demanding requirements; ability to travel.

To apply, please send resume and cover letter to .

Estes Valley Economic Development Strategy 2019 Progress Report

In 2015, Estes Park EDC and the Town of Estes Park completed a five-year comprehensive economic development strategy (CEDS) for the Estes Valley. The strategy was built on a foundation of extensive research and stakeholder input with more than 800 residents of the Estes Valley participated in the planning process.

Between January and April 2019, Avalanche Consulting conducted a review of information related to the Estes Valley’s performance over the past three years to include data analysis of demographics and economic progress. Estes Park EDC also facilitated four workshops with community stakeholders (one for each goal) in which participants discussed successes and future priorities. On April 22 and 23 of this year, Estes Park EDC welcomed Avalanche Consulting back for a three-year update on the status of the Estes Valley Economic Development Strategy. 

Economic Performance Highlights

In the past three years, every sector except for Retail experienced job growth. While progress has been made on the housing front (workforce housing being one of the strategy’s top three priorities), some systemic issues remain. Housing costs continued to rise and a shortage of workforce housing has resulted (in part) in a 13% loss of young families and a 7% decline in the proportion of residents in their prime working age (25-44 years old). These trends indicate that development of workforce housing should remain a priority as well as investments in amenities that appeal to a younger demographic, such as childcare.

The Estes Valley has made significant strides in implementing the strategy, and progress is visible on many fronts. Physical Infrastructure accomplishments include funding and plans in place for reconstruction of roadways under the Federal Lands Access (FLAP) Program grant, smart meters and other utility investments, increased downtown parking capacity and completion of the Estes Valley Community Center. New priorities include continued construction of the broadband network, securing funding for flood mitigation, continued investment in parking, transportation and smart systems.

Business Climate accomplishments include building height increases for workforce housing, density bonuses, improved permitting processes and increased shoulder season and winter events. New priorities include filling the Town’s Building Department Director vacancy, updating the Estes Valley Comprehensive Plan, reducing permitting and development approval times, updating the Town’s incentives toolkit, growing the Arts District and establishing an Estes Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Entrepreneurship and Innovation accomplishments include the Estes Park EDC completing an E-Center business plan, winning grant funding to launch the E-Center, hiring a full time E-Center Program Manager and local brewers and distillers establishing a Craft Spirits Association. New priorities include continuing to develop the E-Center, planning and launching a revolving loan program, encouraging experienced business people to mentor local entrepreneurs and engaging in a marketing campaign to attract freelancers and entrepreneurs to the Estes Valley.

Workforce and Education accomplishments include the Town permitting 200+ new home constructions since 2015, approval of new workforce housing projects, organizational cooperation to address workforce housing needs, a Childcare Needs Assessment, an Estes Early Childhood Education (Estes ECE) nonprofit and new K-12 programs like CareerWise.  New priorities include acceleration of workforce housing, a continued push for higher wage jobs, continued planning for childcare centers, and investment in high quality lifestyle amenities that help attract and retain talent.

To views the full report, please go to