Navigating Change: Celebrating Edwin Bautista’s Journey to GrantWorks 

Written by GrantWorks, Inc.

Joining GrantWorks has been an incredible journey filled with growth and opportunity. As I reflect on the winding path that led me here, I recognize how each experience has shaped me into the professional I am today and prepared me for the challenges that lie ahead. 

The transition from a college student graduating amid a global pandemic to a young professional in planning and community advocacy has been nothing short of a wild ride. During this period, I earned a real estate license and balanced part-time roles while pursuing degrees in urban studies and regional planning at UT Austin. My experience has equipped me with unique insights and skills, paving the way to a promising new chapter at GrantWorks.  

In my initial role as an apartment locator and, later, as a leasing consultant, I developed a nuanced understanding of Austin’s real estate market that enhanced my ability to address diverse client needs effectively. As a right-of-way technician, I further enriched my experience through consulting which allowed me to gain invaluable insights into land acquisition and project management. Subsequently, I spent nearly three years supporting nonprofit work that advocated for low-income housing policy at the local and state level. These roles were instrumental in shaping my expertise in urban planning and community development. 

Last year, in a decisive commitment to serve my community, I embarked on a journey to extend my advocacy by running for Austin City Council District 7. My candidacy is driven by a vision to elevate our community by fostering innovative and inclusive growth across the city. I’m dedicated to representing hardworking Austinites who deserve equitable opportunities to thrive and succeed.


As my career path continued to evolve, I sought a role that followed my passion for community development, leading me to GrantWorks. I discovered GrantWorks through several personal connections – friends who were employees and spoke highly of the company’s impact. I was particularly drawn to the company’s commitment to rural communities, a personal interest stemming from my upbringing in the rural city of Wichita Falls, Texas.  

In my current role as an Associate Planner, and through funding provided by Community Development Block Grants, I focus on bridging the gap between critical funding and the communities most in need of comprehensive planning. My role is strategic and involves identifying opportunities that enhance the resiliency of these communities against natural disasters and socioeconomic challenges.   

Upon joining GrantWorks, I was also introduced to their ethical practices and commitment to servant leadership. From the top down, this company prioritizes the well-being of our communities and the people within them. Whether it’s through volunteer initiatives, community outreach programs, or sustainable business practices, GrantWorks continually demonstrates its dedication to making a positive impact and following “The GrantWorks Way.” 

To me, “The GrantWorks Way” embodies this essence of servant leadership. This philosophy deeply resonates with me and reflects my own beliefs in the power of service and its impact on people’s lives. Whether navigating complex grant processes or engaging directly with community members, the spirit of servant leadership is evident in every aspect of our work. It’s about prioritizing community needs and effectively utilizing our skills to serve those needs. In every project, the profound impact of our work on real lives inspires a deeper dedication to our mission of building our nation’s communities. 

Joining GrantWorks has been more than a career transition; it’s been a significant step towards fulfilling a deeper mission of service and community development. With each new project, I’m reminded of the profound impact our work has on the lives of individuals and communities. Looking ahead, I’m eager to inspire resilience through thoughtful planning and ensure our collective work leaves a lasting impact.