Kirchner-Donovan Impact Initiative


The Kirchner-Donovan Impact Initiative (KDII) is the latest stage of incremental paradigm development focused on impact activities extending almost a decade, combining the existing Kirchner Food Fellowship and Kirchner Investment Academy programs with the recently established Kirchner Liaison Activities. KDII will assist in training the next generation of Central American resource allocators to deploy disciplined capital, and connecting impact-driven organizations to the resources that best fit their needs, while contributing to the economic growth of the region using a holistic approach to strengthening the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.

KDII will act as a hub of support for the regional entrepreneurial and impact investing ecosystems by building bridges between social entrepreneurs, technical resources, and global capital sources by combining Kirchner Group’s three programs under one umbrella. KDII has identified Costa Rica as the initial location to refine the paradigm in the region.


In recent years the flow of impact capital to Latin America has increased dramatically, yet Central America has received a small percentage of this capital compared to other countries in the region. We believe effective and creative models are needed to support the entrepreneurial ecosystem, help catalyze more investment into the region and to make that investment go further when it arrives. To accomplish this, KDII seeks to support the Central American impact investing ecosystem through a three-pronged approach: training the next generation of resource allocators to wield disciplined capital, providing support and resources to local entrepreneurs and connecting impact-driven organizations with the resource pools that best suit their needs. The ultimate goal is to strengthen the ecosystem enough to a point where initiatives like KDII are no longer necessary and Central America’s social entrepreneurs and impact investors are empowered to thrive independently.


Kirchner Food Fellowship

This program trains and empowers diverse and distributed investment teams consisting of university students from a variety of backgrounds, to learn the fundamentals of investment and then source, diligence and with full discretion execute on an impact investment addressing global food security. Throughout the process of “learning by doing” over one academic year, they are given weekly mentorship and guidance by experienced investors, entrepreneurs, and domain experts without compromising their autonomy. To date the program has assessed applications from hundreds of students and has mentored over 30 individuals across 10 distinct cohorts representing 10 countries and 50+ institutions including regional precedents such as TEC de Monterrey, UNAM, Instituto Politécnico Nacional and Zamorano University.

“The Kirchner Food Fellowship is continuing its legacy as one of the cornerstones of the global Food Security movement. I applaud Kirchner’s remarkable foresight and dedication to this initiative.”

June Henton, Dean of the College of Human Sciences at Auburn University and Executive Director, Hunger Solutions Institute

Kirchner Investment Academy

An intensive training program that demystifies the investment process for entrepreneurs and introduces eager, yet perhaps inexperienced, “angel” investors to the art of deploying disciplined capital. This program has provided instruction to over 400 entrepreneurs and potential angel investors around the world.  KIA continues to evolve and expand.

“The knowledge that Kirchner brings with this course elevate the profile of the whole regional entrepreneurship ecosystem.”

Adriana Ruiz, Entrepreneurship Director- Leon Municipality

Kirchner Liaison Activities

A matchmaking program that connects social enterprises, pre-screened by Kirchner Food Fellows, with appropriate resources such as regional impact funds, accelerators, incubators and other unique capital sources previously disconnected from the Central American impact investment ecosystem.

“We look forward to working together to continue to generate positive impact for farmers in Latin America and leveraging Kirchner’s extensive expertise in the agriculture and food sector.”

Nicolás Simonassi, Founder and CEO – Siembro


The initiative is made possible by the generous support of the Kirchner Impact Foundation in fond memory of don Enrique Carballo, who epitomized Tico hospitality, and Michael Donovan, a successful entrepreneur who was born and raised in the region.


If you are interested in learning more, please contact – Charles Higgenbotham –