Cause of Choice: Taco Bell Foundation and Boys & Girls Clubs of America
Horatio Alger: Now a builder of high-rises and arenas, she began her life in a small adobe home with no indoor plumbing.
Match Made in Heaven: Her restaurateur husband shops for all of her clothes. Her construction company builds all of his restaurants.
First Job: A neighborhood yard work business with her brother. The money went to charity. Her mother's view was that work was "an investment in your character, not in your bank account."
Armed with her mother’s philosophy of empieza pequeño, pero piensa muy grande (“start small, but think big”), Linda Alvarado began her career as a laborer for a groundskeeper in college, moved into construction management, and formed her own company, Alvarado Construction. She started out pouring concrete for sidewalks and erecting small bus shelters. Now, with more than 35 years of experience in the construction industry, she builds high-rises, hotels, sports arenas, convention centers and more as a commercial general contractor, construction manager, developer, designer/builder, and property manager.
Alvarado sets tall standards in what was, to put it mildly, a man's world. Her Denver-based company has offices in several states and executes multi-million dollar projects across America and internationally. When then-candidate Obama claimed the Democratic nomination in 2008, he was in an Alvarado-restored convention hall. And when the Denver Broncos take the take the field at the 2001 Mile High, they’re playing on turf that she helped lay. The sports connection doesn’t end there: Alvarado’s co-ownership of the Colorado Rockies makes her the first woman and first Hispanic owner in the history of Major League Baseball.