Professional services firm CliftonLarsonAllen'sCLA Foundationrecently completed their second grant cycle last month, awarding $300,000 to 17 organizations across the country that share its mission of "promot[ing] and support[ing] diverse individuals and organizations by connecting networks, advancing work readiness, and creating career opportunities."

The second grant cycle follows the Foundation's initial $100,000 in grants made last year.

“We challenged ourselves to award $100,000 in meaningful grants by the end of our first year, and we did it,” stated CLA Foundation board chair Jan Kruchoski. “In December 2015 we granted $80,000 to five organizations and another $20,000 to four business plan competitions across the United States. To date in 2016, we have granted an additional $300,000. Grantees range from programs that support entrepreneurs to programs that teach youth what it takes to be successful in college and in their profession.”

“We believe the CLA Foundation’s mission will kindle a spark of entrepreneurship, create jobs, generate growth, and lay the foundation for even greater opportunities throughout our communities and our country," Kruchoski added.

2015 and 2016 CLA Foundation grant recipients include: American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation; Breakthrough Collaborative; Brevard Achievement Center; Eleva-Strum High School Cardinal Manufacturing; Elpis Enterprises; Genesys Works; Girls, Inc. of Greater Los Angeles; Groundwork Denver; Honor Courage Commitment; Hope House of Colorado; Idaho Youth Ranch; Junior Achievement of Tampa Bay; LIFESPAN, Inc.; Mission: St. Louis; Native American Finance Officers Association; Rawhide Ranch; School’s Out Washington; Vernon Economic Development Association; Viscardi Center; WomenVenture; World Savvy; Yakima County Development Association; and four statewide business plan competitions in Florida, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Washington.

Grants from the CLA Foundation help programs such as Genesys Works - which helps disadvantaged high school students enter and succeed in the workforce - grow the reach of their program.

“The generosity of the CLA Foundation is allowing us to expand,” said Genesys chief strategic growth officer Jeff Tollefson, per a statement. “We plan to grow and serve 20 cities and we’re on our way to make that happen."

For more on CliftonLarsonAllen and the CLA Foundation, head to the firm'ssite here.