Elevate - At Elevate, we build smart, sustainable grant programs...


Alayna Buckner founded Elevate in 2013 to make the highest-level development expertise accessible to nonprofit organizations. Since then, she has overseen Elevate’s growth to one of the country’s leading grant writing firms, serving over hundreds of nonprofits and raising hundreds of millions of dollars since its founding. Today, Alayna continues to oversee Elevate’s staff, consult with clients to draft private and federal proposals, and develop new products that will improve the lives of nonprofit leaders. Alayna is a member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and American Grant Writers Association and has served as a grant reviewer for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and Serve DC, the Mayor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism.

Alayna graduated from Stanford University with a BA in Philosophy and Public Policy and Honors in Ethics in Society in 2006. In 2009, she was elected to serve a one-year term as the Chair of the Women’s Information Network (WIN). In 2015, she became a licensed consultant by the Standards of Excellence in 2015, was named ‘40 under 40’ by Leadership Arlington, and became a member of EO (Entrepreneurs’ Organization), the global thought leader on entrepreneurship. Alayna is proud that as a women-owned business, Elevate has been named one of the country’s fastest growing businesses by Inc. 5000 every year it has been eligible.

Alayna has two adorable dogs, both pittie rescues: Tucker Q. Buckner and Greyson Rex Buckner.

At Elevate, we build smart, sustainable grant programs that help nonprofits succeed. We form in-depth partnerships with nonprofits across the country to improve their program outcomes, and build more sustainable organizations. We work closely with our clients to build and maintain a strong grants program, using a team model that allows us to bring exceptional and experienced fundraisers to nonprofits at a more affordable rate. We work with about 90 nonprofits around the country, including many in our home region of Washington, DC.

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