SUMMIT, NJ - Inspired by the success of the 'Sustain Summit' effort and fueled through $350,000 in donations from anonymous donors, the 'Jumpstart Summit' program -- offering individual grants of up to $15,000 to support independent Summit.businesses / owners -- has been created.

According to organizers, businesses planning to reopen or expand currently limited operations as state restrictions are reduced may apply for 'Jumpstart Summit' grants of up to $15,000 each. In return, the donors ask grant recipients to "make a good faith effort to 'pay it forward', provided they are able, once they are back on their feet." Recipients will be encouraged to make a voluntary donation equal to the grant received, sometime in the next 24 months, to The Summit Foundation.

Independent business owners can learn more about the program by visiting, and apply for Jumpstart Summit grants by visiting Applications will be accepted through Tuesday, May 26.

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Jumpstart Summit grants are available to businesses that: 

  • Have a physical business presence within the City of Summit
  • Are normally open to the public
  • Have been directly affected by the Governor’s restrictions on commerce
  • Had fewer than 50 full-time employees on March 2nd, 2020
  • Plan to resume regular operations, or expand previously limited operations, once relevant restrictions are lifted
  • Have already qualified for grants through the Sustain Summit program 

Jumpstart Summit applications will be reviewed by a small committee that has been selected by the donor. The committee consists of Jordan Glatt, Julie Keenan and Jonathan Betz. Summit Downtown, Inc. will manage financial operations for Jumpstart Summit, but does not have grant decision responsibility.

“The 'Jumpstart' program provides an option for businesses to receive the assistance they need and then pay-it-forward," said Summit Mayor Nora Radest. "We are extremely grateful to the anonymous donor and others who are supporting this program for the benefit of our local merchants.”

'Sustain Summit Fund' Awards $340,000+

Established by Radest, in partnership with Summit Downtown Inc. (SDI) and The Summit Foundation, the 'Sustain Summit Fund' has, to date, granted more than $340,000 to 127 locally owned small businesses in Summit. 'Sustain Summit' was created to support local businesses experiencing economic distress because of COVID-19 containment measures. Nearly 450 residents and area corporations donated to the fund, which was administered by SDI.

Businesses received grants ranging from $2,000 to $5,500 to help with the devastation of COVID-19 stay-at-home guidelines.

“I am proud to be part of this incredibly generous Summit community that joined together in quick response, providing essential aid to our many valued local businesses during a very difficult time,” said Radest. “While COVID-19 has taken many things away from us, it has not impacted the generous spirit of our friends and neighbors who value our local merchants. Thank you to everyone who made a donation to the Sustain Summit Fund in support of our local merchants and to Summit Downtown Inc. for administering it.”

The Summit Foundation, formerly the Summit Area Public Foundation, identifies community needs and makes grants to local nonprofits to address those needs. All gifts to the Foundation will be used to continue its work of supporting local organizations that help Summit area residents, with the goal to create a self-perpetuating circle of support for the community.