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Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: April 2018

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Northern NJ Community Foundation Supports Regional Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit in Madison

Press Release – (Bergen County, New Jersey; April 27, 2018) — The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF), a leader in creative placemaking in the region, returns for a third year as a sponsor at The Northeastern Corridor Creative Placemaking Leadership Summit. This year’s event, Playing Fair: Cultural Design, Sports, and Gentrification, is produced by The National Consortium for Creative Placemaking, and will be held on May 3 and 4, 2018 at Drew University in Madison, New Jersey.

Creative placemaking is the practice of integrating arts and culture into the fabric of a region, town, or city block. “As an advocate and practitioner of creative placemaking in Northern New Jersey, the Northern New Jersey Community Foundation supports this Summit by being a sponsor and reinforcing its work and message. Creative placemaking represents a win-win opportunity for any municipality interested in improving quality-of-life and boosting economic vitality in the community,” said Danielle De Laurentis, Associate Director, NNJCF.

The Summit brings together hundreds of creative placemakers from various fields. Public officials, developers, funders, urban planners, and cultural organization leaders learn and gain insights from others and share their interests in connecting public policy and the arts. The 2018 program focuses on some of these key issues: sports and their role in arts development, making space for creativity and design, funding, introducing creative placemaking to communities, gentrification and the ethical ambiguity of creative placemaking, and physical design. For further information, visit the Summit’s web site, https://www.cplsummit.org/northeast .

The Main Street Mural, an example of creative placemaking, is a 140-foot mural beautifying a building in Hackensack.

NNJCF: A Proponent of Creative Placemaking

The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation, a Hackensack-based not-for-profit organization, has presented “The Smart Person’s Guide to Creative Placemaking” at a previous Summit, and has been an active proponent of creative placemaking in several forums throughout Bergen County. The NNJCF’s initiative, ArtsBergen, holds its quarterly networking event, Connect the Dots, attracting artists, arts administrators, municipal and community leaders, business owners, and arts supporters living or working in Bergen County, who are interested in cultivating connections. Through Connect the Dots, ArtsBergen’s goal is to build a unified local arts community and encourage collaborations between artists and arts organizations to develop community-based arts projects in the area.

Creative Placemaking in Hackensack

Since 2014, the Northern NJ Community Foundation’s ArtsBergen initiative has been an ongoing partner with the City of Hackensack and the Hackensack Main Street Alliance, assisting in using creative placemaking to integrate arts and culture into the Main Street redevelopment plan. Partnering with the National Consortium for Creative Placemaking of Union, New Jersey, ArtsBergen assisted the Hackensack Creative Arts Team (CAT), a group of local stakeholders in developing a creative placemaking vision plan for the city.

To achieve the plan’s goals, ArtsBergen has worked extensively with CAT on many projects, such as the downtown public art project — the Main Gateway Mural, a 140 foot mural beautifying a burnt down building, and “Art on a Stick: Raccoons”, a series of anthropomorphic raccoons bringing the ordinary to life, at the Johnson Public Library. ArtsBergen also managed a call for artists for the “Utility ARTBox Project”, a street art project that presents anti-littering messages via art on utility boxes along Main Street and beyond.

“ArtsBergen is invested in helping Hackensack’s downtown become a cultural and economic center — walkable, livable, and sustainable. The Northern NJ Community Foundation envisions Hackensack becoming a model of creative placemaking in Bergen County,” said De Laurentis.

About NNJCF

The Northern New Jersey Community Foundation (NNJCF), a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization based in Hackensack, New Jersey, focuses primarily on civic engagement, education, public health, and the arts. NNJCF works with local governments, school districts, businesses, non-profit organizations, and citizen groups in Northern New Jersey to improve community life. The Foundation’s partners identify and resolve regional problems and opportunities by talking and learning from each other, by sharing ideas, best practices, services, and resources.

For more information, visit www.nnjcf.org, send an email to nnjcf@nnjcf.org, or call (201) 568-5608. Follow the NNJCF on Facebook at Northern NJ Community Foundation/ArtsBergen and Twitter @NNJCF.


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National FFA Organization, John Deere And Discovery Education Team Up To Introduce The Next Generation Of Manufacturers To Innovative And Accessible Careers In STEM

– ‘Careers that Innovate’ Virtual Field Trip to Spotlight Opportunities in Engineering, Technology and Advanced Manufacturing as a Pathway to 21st Century Skill-Building and Career Readiness –

Press Release – Silver Spring, Md. (Monday, April 30, 2018) – The National FFA Organization, John Deere, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, are teaming up to host a new Virtual Field Trip entitled John Deere: Careers that Innovate on Thursday, May 3, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT. During this immersive experience, high school students will take a tour of the John Deere facility in Moline, Ill., where they will be introduced to a range of interesting career paths, including: marketing, engineering, supply chain management and production.

The Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip will uncover how professionals in advanced manufacturing work together to implement quality control as they identify challenges, produce solutions, think critically and communicate effectively to address consumer’s needs. Students will also meet John Deere team members who are instrumental in the design, manufacturing and marketing process, as they explore how the John Deere 8R Family of Tractors are produced today. Educators, parents, student advocates and members of the community may register for the John Deere: Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip at agexplorer.com/virtual-field-trip.

Dave Gilmore, Senior Vice President, Global Marketing and Sales, John Deere says, “We are proud to be the longest-running FFA sponsor for over 75 years. We share a common commitment to the future of agriculture and want to take this opportunity to introduce students to John Deere careers. Through the Virtual Field Trip, we hope that students will gain a better understanding of our wide variety of career paths and get a glimpse of our high-tech manufacturing processes and facilities.”

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 7-in-10 production jobs are sourced from the manufacturing industry sector. The Careers that Innovate experience will provide a companion activity that engages students and will illustrate a range of highly-skilled careers –

from product planner to production supervisor – involved in advanced manufacturing. The educational immersion will also underscore how advanced manufacturing utilizes technology and the engineering process to improve products and processes.

“With job openings expanding rapidly every year in agriculture, there is no better time than now to start sparking student interest in the field,” said Mark Poeschl, CEO of the National FFA Organization. “We are thrilled to continue the AgExplorer mission in partnership with John Deere and Discovery Education to transform today’s high school students into the field’s leaders of tomorrow.”

To aid educators and participants in integrating this virtual event into classroom instruction, the National FFA Organization, John Deere and Discovery Education have made standards-aligned Virtual Field Trip teaching resources available for classroom use online. Educators and classrooms are also invited to deepen their experience by joining the conversation and asking questions of participants LIVE on Twitter @NationalFFA, @DiscoveryEd and using the hashtag #AgExplorerVFT. Following the live event, the Virtual Field Trip will be made available on-demand through AgExplorer.com.

“Discovery Education applauds the National FFA Organization and John Deere’s leadership in making STEM careers accessible to the next generation of innovators,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Discovery Education. “AgExplorer provides educators with invaluable educational resources that build bridges to career exploration and we know that immersive, stimulating virtual experiences accelerate student learning as they develop and grow.”

Launched in 2016, AgExplorer.com offers teachers and students a deep database of career profiles that help students connect what they are learning in school to future careers. Career pathways highlighted include: power, structural and technical systems; biotechnology systems; environmental service systems; food products and processing systems; animal systems; natural resources systems; plant systems and agricultural education. In addition, AgExplorer.com includes more than 220 career descriptions, education requirements, average salary, links to a college and university database and more all designed to help students. To access the site’s free resources, visit here.

“The Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Trip is an immersive experience that will help students and teachers collaborate to energize minds,” said Patti Grammens, teacher at Lakeside Middle School in Georgia’s Forsyth County Schools. “AgExplorer helps to expand students’ exposure to career opportunities beyond the walls of the classroom and unlocks the power of their curiosity.”

The John Deere: Careers that Innovate Virtual Field Tip is also available through Discovery Education Streaming Plus. For more information about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit DiscoveryEducation.com. Stay connected with Discovery Education on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @DiscoveryEd.


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Outlook Mixed For Renewable Energy Installations In Middle East And Africa Region, Says GlobalData

Press Release – Renewable energy has a mixed outlook in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region, due to a reluctance to invest from some countries and an inability to afford renewables in others, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Several major MEA countries are actively supporting the growth of renewable energy through mechanisms such as renewable targets, renewable portfolio standards (RPS), feed in tariffs (FiTs) or auctions, net metering and tax exemptions or subsidies.

Anchal Agarwal, Power Analyst at GlobalData, says: “Most of the countries covered in MEA* have renewable energy targets, implying that these governments are actively supporting the growth of renewable energy in their respective countries. Some countries have capacity targets, while others have targets to achieve a fixed share of generation from renewable sources.”

Iran set a target in 2014 of 5 Gigawatts (GW) from wind and solar power, by 2020. In spite of this, renewable energy did not make much progress in the country. Hence, in January 2018, the government again declared a target of installing 1 GW of renewable energy projects every year from 2018 to 2022.

The availability of oil in the MEA region presents a major challenge to renewables. For example, in 2016, Saudi Arabia reduced its 2040 renewable goals from 50% to 10% of the country’s electricity supply. In April 2017, the country declared that it will develop 30 solar and wind projects over the next 10 years as part of the kingdom’s $50 billion program to boost power generation and cut its oil consumption.

Agarwal continues: “A noticeable observation in the MEA region is the growing popularity of the auction/tender mechanism to develop large-scale renewable projects. Countries such as Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Morocco, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa and UAE have auction mechanism for various renewable energy technologies. However, countries including Algeria, Iran, Kenya, Nigeria and Tanzania have already proposed the renewable auctions and they are expected to announce it within a year.”

FiTs and net metering are other major policy support mechanisms used by governments of Middle East & African countries to promote renewable energy. Six countries have FiT schemes for various renewable technologies, and Ghana and UAE are the only countries to have proposed a net-metering scheme.

* MEA countries covered = Algeria, Angola, Egypt, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Morocco, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Syria and UAE.


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OrthodontiCell to Launch Clinical Trial for Bioelectric RANKL, VEGF and OPG Controlled Accelerated Tooth Movement and Stabilization

Press Release – SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH – 04-27-2018 (Press Release Jet) — OrthodontiCell, Salt Lake City, Utah is initiating an international multi-center clinical trial; to evaluate the safety and efficacy of its Tooth Movement AcceleratorTM and Teeth Position Stabilizer products based on the application of precise bioelectric signal sequences designed to control release of RANKL and VEGF for accelerated tooth movement and OPG for stabilization.

The study will be conducted at numerous sites around the world with enrollment beginning in Brazil this summer at Heminio Ometto University Center, Araras, Brazil and Division of Periodontics, College of Dentistry, State University of São Paulo, Brazil. The study will include arms with bioelectric stimulation and braces and an arm with bioelectric stimulation in clear aligners.

OrthodontiCell is a startup incubating at Leonhardt’s Launchpads Utah, Inc. in Salt Lake City, Utah with funding, technical and advisory support from Leonhardt Ventures and Leonhardt’s Launchpads by Cal-X Stars Business Accelerator, Inc. and DentaCell Accelerator. Leonhardt Ventures and its team has been developing leading cardiovascular devices since the 1980’s and Dr. Shinich Kanno a collaborating researcher published the first bioelectric VEGF protein expression paper in CIRCULATION in 1999. This led to an issued pioneering patent on bioelectric VEGF expression a few years later filed by the Leonhardt team. From 1999 forward the Leonhardt team has patented, developed and tested numerous bioelectric stimulation devices, signals and sequences for various healing applications. Howard Leonhardt founding member has 21 issued U.S. patents with over 100 invention claims and dozens of new patent claims pending currently with the USPTO. Dr. Jorge Genovese of Argentina and Dr. John Marchetto are co-inventors along with Leonhardt of the OrthodontiCell device line. In April of 2016 they began filing their first series of patent applications specific to bioelectric accelerated tooth movement and stabilization keyed on RANKL, VEGF and OPG in combination.

The collaborating team in Brazil published a study demonstrating electrical stimulation enhanced accelerated tooth movement in 2017 – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26917494 focusing on expression of TGF-β1, VEFG, and bFGF.

OrthodontiCell began preliminary testing of prototypes in November 2015 and has completed a series of bioelectric protein expression safety and efficacy studies in Argentina, Utah and more recently at Forsyth Institute in Boston in preparation for these clinical trials focused on the bioelectric stimulation controlled release of RANKL and VEGF for accelerated tooth movement and OPG for stabilization. Previous studies were completed using gene transfer and protein deliveries of the RANKL and OPG that demonstrated a 2/3rds improvement in tooth movement acceleration and teeth position stabilization after straightening – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16397507. The OrthodontiCell team demonstrated in pre-clinical studies their ability to produce the same volume of RANKL and OPG produced in these previous successful gene and protein studies via bioelectric stimulation with only 2 to 20 minutes stimulation time via a customized proprietary mouthpiece and stimulator 2X a week.

“Our team demonstrated safety and > 30% acceleration of tooth movement with our previous published pre-clinical study focused on TGF-B1, VEGF and bFGF expression controlled by electrical stimulation. The OrthodontiCell team now brings to the table the added bioelectric signal sequences for RANKL and OPG. Numerous studies have documented the strong influence of RANKL in accelerated tooth movement. The addition of OPG for position stabilization is also a potential major advancement. We look forward to implementing well controlled studies to prove out the safety and efficacy of this new combination technology platform.” states Dr. Mauro P Santamaria of the University of Sao Paulo, College of Dentistry and Peridontics and Henminio Ometto University Center, Araras, Brazil and his collaborator Dr. Milton Santamaria Jr.

“Over 100 papers have demonstrated the safety, healing and pain relief properties of electrical stimulation since the 1950’s. What is unique about this new OrthodontiCell technology is precision high quality signals in precise sequences to control with accuracy the release of RANKL, VEGF and OPG proteins from a patient’s own surrounding tissues on demand. This platform differs from others in the precise control of these key tooth movement proteins and is the only technology known that follows up the accelerated tooth movement with stabilization to reduce, or possibly even the eliminate, the need for long term retainer use. Our goal in this study is to demonstrate both a 2/3rds improvement of tooth movement acceleration compared to braces and aligners alone and to document for the first time improved stabilization after tooth movement”. stated Dr. John Marchetto, Orthodontist, Co-Inventor and President and Chief Medical Officer of OrthodontiCell.

OrthodontiCell is an orthodontic accessory intended for use during orthodontic treatment. The device is intended to be used in conjunction with standard orthodontic appliance, such as braces and aligners.

OrthodontiCell has Booth No. 1148 at the American Association of Orthodontists Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. May 4th to 8th, 2018 and will have prototypes on display and a video demonstrating our technology platform. Click here to register to attend – https://register.xpressreg.net/EventRegistration/AAOS0518/Register/Landing/65fcb7e5-989c-43e8-9a53-f8b76104e97b

“We hope to prove in these studies we can help patients quality of life by reducing their time to wear uncomfortable braces, aligners and retainers. Our bioengineering teams in Utah and California and our research collaborators in Argentina, Brazil, Florida and Boston MA have all worked hard to develop and test a reliable product leading into these clinical trials.” stated Howard Leonhardt, Co-Inventor, Executive Chairman and CEO OrthodontiCell and Leonhardt’s Launchpads.

“Our pre-clinical animal studies have demonstrated our ability to repeatedly and reliably increase the expression of RANKL, VEGF and OPG in stimulated tissues and bone on demand.” stated Dr. Brett Burton, Director of R&D at Leonhardt’s Launchpads Utah, Inc. and OrthodontiCell.

“What makes this technology different than previous light, vibrational and electrical stimulation treatment products is the precise control of specific protein expressions at specific times as required. The OrthodontiCell bioengineering team has developed unique bioelectric signal sequences and working with technology partners high precision signaling which enables this platform.” added Alex Richardson VP of Engineering and Product Development at OrthodontiCell.

“I have been involved with over 80 clinical trials over my career and this one I can say is designed with sound science and diligence to attempt to prove out both the safety and efficacy of this product. We look forward to sharing interim results sometime later this year or early next year.” stated Dr. Leslie Miller, Chief Medical and Clinical Affairs Officer for Leonhardt’s Launchpads and OrthodontiCell.

About OrthodontiCell:

Launched in November 2015 in Salt Lake City in the Leonhardt’s Launchpads Utah, Inc. innovation and startup accelerator within DentaCell Accelerator in Los Angeles OrthodontiCell is focused on the development of bioelectric stimulation devices for accelerated tooth movement and stabilization. The team has completed 2.5 years of development and preparation pre-clinical testing in advance of entering controlled clinical trials planned to launch OUS the summer of 2018. See web site www.orthodonticell.com

Forward Looking Statements and Cautionary Statement: This technology is not yet proven safe or effective in properly controlled statistically significant clinical trials. Patents pending may not be issued. Patent licenses may not be kept current. The OrthodontiCell startup is underfunded and understaffed compared to comparative competitive companies in its sector. It may not have sufficient resources to see through all obligations necessary to move this product to FDA market clearance, CE Mark and full commercial clearances. The product may not compel sufficient reimbursement from insurance or Medicare to cover costs. Personnel and collaborative partners employed by and partnered with OrthodontiCell may not remain engaged through the course of this development and any changes may delay the development. There may be side effects found from the product use that were not previously detected in pre-clinical studies. The results in clinical trials may vary from previous pre-clincials studies. OrthodontiCell relies on a number of suppliers that may not perform as needed for a successful product launch. This is an early stage high risk product development which is not yet proven.

For the original news story, please visit https://pressreleasejet.com/news/orthodonticell-to-launch-clinical-trial-for-bioelectric-rankl-vegf-and-opg-controlled-accelerated-tooth-movement-and-stabilization.html.


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Silicon Valley Feels Tremors After 4th Annual Culture Shifting Weekend Shifts the Racial Divide in Tech, Finance and Healthcare

Underwritten by Lead Sponsor Morgan Stanley, Along with SAP, LinkedIn, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Dignity Health, Vista Equity Partners, Fenwick & West, Mercedes-Benz and Others,300+ Black Leaders Convened to #MakeShiftHappen at Weekend Summit on Diversity, Inclusion and Innovation

VIPS in Attendance Included: Dignity Health CEO Lloyd Dean, Former NASA Astronaut Dr. Mae Jemison, Comedian Chris Spencer (Awards MC), Cedars-Sinai Head of Neurosurgery, Dr. Keith Black, Peggy Abkemier Alford, CFO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative and Many More!

Press Release – San Francisco & Palo Alto, CA – April 27, 2018 – Silicon Valley’s notorious and much derided “brotopia” culture eroded this past weekend as 300+ C-Suite execs, financiers, tech and health entrepreneurs joined for a weekend of collaborating, deal-making and celebrating actions that make the upper reaches of America’s boardrooms and tech company corner offices more diverse. Known as the “Davos of Diversity,” Culture Shifting Weekend assembles a carefully curated group of black and latinx leaders who share a goal of diversity, inclusion and innovation.

Produced by business consultant Andrea Hoffman, CEO of Culture Shift Labs, Culture Shifting Weekend is a twice-yearly gathering of power players who can move the needle, impacting companies and industry sectors. The fall 2017 Culture Shifting Weekend in New York, hosted by SAP, convened the largest ever gathering of black VCs. Denmark West of Connectivity Ventures and former Booz Allen Partner Reginald Van Lee co-chair the event.

“We aim to close the racial divide in Silicon Valley and Culture Shifting Weekend is a firm step towards that goal,” said Andrea Hoffman. “People often say to me, ‘Where are the people of color who can lead America’s best companies?’ The answer is they’re right here—hiding in plain sight. We’ve built a 5,000 person network that is leadership and board ready, that include top subject matter experts and investors who want to be in the room because of the business deals and business opportunities they access.”

The weekend spanned activities including: A Millennial Tech Entrepreneurs Breakfast where founders of color with traction met corporate decision makers—led by Kwame Anku of the Black Angel Tech Fund; a Fireside Chat with Dr. Mae Jemison, pioneering astronaut, physician, engineer and entrepreneur led by Russlynn Ali, CEO of XQ Institute; a Think/Action Tank afternoon, focused on inclusive healthcare innovation led by Dr. Michael Penn, which was kicked off with a conversation between Caroline Clarke of Black Enterprise and Dr. Keith Black, head of neurosurgery at Los Angeles’ celebrated Cedars-Sinai Medical Center; and Sunday’s Culture Shifting Awards, held at The Rosewood, Sand Hill. Other event venues included SAP’s stunning San Francisco office and LinkedIn’s Sunnyvale campus.

The Culture Shifting Awards recognize leaders and pioneers of diversity and those who care about growth and innovation through diversity and inclusion. This year actor/producer/comedian Chris Spencer emceed the program honoring Peggy Abkemier Alford, CFO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative; Ime Archibong, VP of Partnerships, Facebook; Lloyd Dean, CEO of Dignity Health; and Denise Young Smith, Executive in Residence at Cornell Tech. The Culture Shifting Awards has honored more than 40 leaders to date that span technology, innovation and social impact.

A special appearance was made by 7-year old aspiring neuroscientist Amoy Antunet whose goal is to perform the first brain transplant. At the Culture Shifting Awards she had the opportunity to be on stage with actress Nichelle Nichols who played communications officer Lieutenant (later Commander) Uhura, aboard the USS Enterprise in the Star Trek TV series.

Luminaries attending Culture Shifting Weekend included:

  • Danny Allen, VP, Tech Diversity & Inclusion, SAP
  • Keith L. Black, MD, Head of Neurosurgery, Cedars-Sinai
  • Samuel Bright, Sr. Director, GM of Art & Collectibles, eBay
  • Michael Carter, Co-Head & Managing Director of Technology Investment Banking, RBC Capital Markets
  • Anddria Clack-Rogers Varnado, VP, Head of Strategy & Business Development, William Sonoma
  • John Dokes, CMO, Accuweather
  • Shaloo Garg, Global Innovation & Start Up Ecosystem, Oracle
  • David Ibnale, Managing Partner, Advance Venture Partners
  • Moses Ike, Director of Investments & Corporate Development, Blue Shield of CA
  • Alice Vilma, Managing Director, Morgan Stanley
  • Robin Washington, EVP and CFO, Gilead

A complete list of distinguished hosts, speakers and sponsors may be found here.

Praise for Culture Shifting Weekend includes:

“Culture Shifting Weekend presented a unique opportunity to network not only with entrepreneurs of color, but also with high profile investors and critical corporate partners who are dedicated to realizing the commercial impact of inclusive innovation and broadening the investment and acceleration pipeline for all entrepreneurs.” Alice S. Vilma, Managing Director, Morgan Stanley, Multicultural Client Strategy

“Attending the Culture Shifting Weekend Millennial Breakfast afforded me the opportunity to develop relationships with the future face of global business through what can only be described as the most incredible event I have ever been involved with,” said Landon Edmond, Cloud General Counsel, SAP. “Andrea and team are actively shifting culture. I cannot wait until next year’s event!”

“Culture Shift Labs has solidified its role as a mission-driven platform to elevate, empower and connect diverse leaders towards purposeful action in this community,” said Anddria Clack-Rogers Varnado, VP, Head of Strategy & Business Development at Williams-Sonoma, Inc.

“Culture Shifting Weekend was inspiring,” said Juanita Lott, Angel Investor. “The relationships and partnerships that come from the work of Culture Shift Labs will play an important role in advancing the great leaders and future leaders that will work to make this culture shift a reality.”

About Andrea Hoffman and Culture Shift Labs

Andrea Hoffman is an advisor, dealmaker, strategist, 2x author, and the founder and CEO of the management consulting firm Culture Shift Labs (CSL). CSL advises senior leaders, cities, large nonprofits and philanthropists on growth and innovation through diversity and inclusion. Andrea consults with C-suite executives across a wide range of industries on finding new growth opportunities. CSL has offices in New Jersey and San Francisco (where she expanded the business in 2015).

Andrea is also the founder of Culture Shifting Weekends, the largest bi-coastal annual gathering of Black leaders in technology, innovation and social impact to enable deals and collaborations (think Davos but for Black decision makers). She’s been producing this gathering of her knowledge and network for 9 years in NYC and 4 years in Silicon Valley. In addition, Andrea is developing SaaS platform called Katapult, which will help companies with 1,000+ employees assess, measure and improve their diversity efforts including impact on business and society.


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Reach Higher to Host 2018 College Signing Day with Former First Lady Michelle Obama in Philadelphia at Temple University on May 2

Mrs. Obama will be joined by 8,000 Philadelphia students to celebrate their pursuit of higher education

Mrs. Obama will also be joined by actors, singers, athletes and stars including: Bradley Cooper, Robert De Niro, Janelle Monae, Zendaya, Ciara, Questlove, Jidenna, Nick Cannon, Kelly Rowland, Rebel Wilson and Jesse Tyler Ferguson, as well as members of the Philadelphia Eagles and 76ers.

Press Release – Washington, DC – On Wednesday, May 2, Reach Higher will host the 2018 College Signing Day with former First Lady Michelle Obama at Temple University. The event will be held at the Liacouras Center with 8,000 students from across Philadelphia’s public, private, charter, and parochial schools. This is the fifth consecutive year that Mrs. Obama has celebrated College Signing Day.

College Signing Day celebrates high school seniors choosing to pursue higher education at a professional training program, a community college, a four-year college or university, or the military and continues Mrs. Obama’s efforts to inspire young people to pursue their education past high school. In addition to Mrs. Obama’s event in Philadelphia, more than 2,000 College Signing Day events have been planned in nearly every state across the country by communities, students, and organizations committed to helping students pursue higher education.

Mrs. Obama recently tweeted her support, noting “I’m so in awe of college-bound students all over the country—you inspire @BarackObama and me every day. We know how hard you’ve worked to make your college dreams a reality. That’s why #CollegeSigningDay is one of my favorite traditions. I can’t wait to celebrate in Philly!”

Mrs. Obama is encouraging people across the country to join her in celebrating College Signing Day by wearing their college apparel and sharing the importance of higher education on social media using #CollegeSigningDay and #BetterMakeRoom.

Livestream will be available, with details forthcoming.

Started by Mrs. Obama during her time at the White House, Reach Higher continues its college access and completion work at Civic Nation, a non-profit focused on innovative engagement and awareness initiatives. This work includes Reach Higher’s Better Make Room campaign, which lifts up and celebrates the stories of today’s high school and college students.

As part of her work with Reach Higher, Mrs. Obama has hosted College Signing Day events in New York City, New York in 2016 and 2017; Detroit, Michigan in 2015; and San Antonio, Texas in 2014.

The celebrities joining Mrs. Obama to celebrate College Signing Day in Philadelphia include:

Anne Munition, Internet Personality

Bailee Madison, Actress

Bradley Cooper, Actor

Camila Cabello, Performing Artist

Ciara, Performing Artist

Daymond John, Author

Dikembe Mutombo, NBA Legend

Erin Wayne, Internet Personality

Janelle Monae, Performing Artist and Actor

Jameer Nelson, NBA Player

Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Actor

Jessica Goch (JGhostly), Internet Personality

Jidenna, Performing Artist

Jussie Smollet, Performing Artist

Karlie Kloss, Model

Keke Palmer, Performing Artist

Kelly Rowland, Performing Artist

Lindsay Harding, Former WNBA Player

Malcolm Jenkins, Eagle

Mark Jackson, 76er

Nnamdi Asomugha, Former NFL Athlete

Nick Cannon, Performing Artist

Tyler Blevins (Ninja), Internet Personality

Questlove, Performing Artist

Rebel Wilson, Actress

Robert De Niro, Actor

Tariq Nasheed, Performing Artist

Tinashe, Performing Artist

Zendaya, Actress


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Digital Impact Opens 2018 Grants Cycle to Advance Digital Civil Society Worldwide

Stanford PACS initiative invites proposals from the U.S. and abroad to foster the safe, ethical, and effective use of digital resources in civil society.

Press Release – Stanford, CADigital Impact, an initiative of the Digital Civil Society Lab at the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society (Stanford PACS), announced the opening of its 2018 grants cycle to advance the use of digital resources for global social good.

Launched in 2016 with the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Digital Impact Grants program funds research and innovation to strengthen the safe, ethical, and effective use of digital data and infrastructure in civil society.

Digital Impact awards grants for two types of projects: scholarly research and sector advancement. Funds are intended to support innovations and research that have broad application for improving knowledge, practices, and outcomes across the social sector. All work supported by Digital Impact Grants is to be publicly shared and openly accessible.

Key thematic areas of interest for the 2018 cycle include: 1) institutional and process innovation; 2) new diverse, robust policy alliances; 3) advancing digital norms for civil society; 4) networking networks; 5) collective civil society approaches to corporate allies; and 6) funding strategies for alternative infrastructures.

“The work of civil society is increasingly rooted in a complex and evolving digital ecosystem full of dependencies, opportunities, and risks,” said Lucy Bernholz, Senior Research Scholar at Stanford PACS and Director of its Digital Civil Society Lab. “Our grants program funds projects to help establish and share new and emerging knowledge, practices, systems, and networks for civil society to thrive in the digital age.”

Digital Impact will select 5 to 10 grantees to receive funding from a pool of $200,000. The deadline for proposals is June 25, 2018 at 5 PM PT, and winners will be notified in August 2018. Funds will support new or ongoing advancements and research to be conducted over the course of the grant period from late fall 2018 to late fall 2019.

Digital Impact will host two webinars to discuss the grants program in detail and respond to questions from prospective applicants (click below to RSVP):

The 2018 cycle marks the third year of the Digital Impact Grants program. The 2016 and 2017 cohorts of Digital Impact grantees received a total of $475,000 for initiatives to support the safe, responsible use of digital resources in the social sector.

To learn more about this grant opportunity, view the full Request for Proposal.

For more information about Digital Impact, visit digitalimpact.org.


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UCI BioSci Allergan Lecture to Focus on Joint Healing Innovations Through Bioengineering, Technology Translation and Commercialization

Press Release – IRVINE, Calif. – April 26, 2018 – The University of California, Irvine Ayala School of Biological Sciences will host the next Allergan Series in Modern Biology Lecture on Thurs., May 17, 2018. The topic will be “Rebuilding Our Joints: Translating Discoveries in Biology and Engineering” presented by Kyriacos Athanasiou, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering at the Henry Samueli School of Engineering at UCI.

Articular cartilage is the soft tissue that covers the ends of long bones. A component of the body’s joints, it is pivotal for motion and overall function. Due to its unique composition, cartilage cannot heal by itself and often progresses to osteoarthritis following injury. The presentation will cover three areas: articular cartilage healing, technology translation and personal experiences in technology commercialization.

Professor Athanasiou will describe his group’s efforts in helping joint cartilages, such as the knee meniscus, repair themselves via tissue engineering approaches using various stem cell sources. He will also present examples and results to illustrate a specific pathway of commercializing academe-based research. Lastly, he will talk about his lessons learned in the commercialization process.

UCI Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering Kyriacos A. Athanasiou
Steve Zylius/UCI

“Joint pain is one of the most common and debilitating conditions afflicting millions of people each year,” noted Frank M. LaFerla, Ph.D., Dean of the Ayala School of Biological Sciences. “We are very pleased to share Professor Athanasiou’s innovative work with the broader community. He is bridging the worlds of biology and engineering to improve the health of our bodies and our quality of life.”

The lecture will take place at 7 p.m., with a dessert reception to follow at 8 p.m., at the Arnold and Mabel Beckman Center of the National Academies of Sciences and Engineering, 100 Academy Way, Irvine, CA 92617. To register, visit www.bio.uci.edu/newsroom/calendar/allergan/.

For information in the UCI School of Biological Sciences, visit www.bio.uci.edu.


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Social Impact 360, The Only Youth-Led Movement For Business For Social Good, Announced 1st Service Corps For Business For Good To Transform The Future Of Corporate Social Responsibility.

Press Release – (New York, NY April 21, 2018) At the height of the youth uprising, a second youth movement is poised to solve social issues.

On April 21st, 2018, Social Impact 360 (SI360), the only youth-led movement in the business sector dedicated to solving social issues, today announced it is creating the 1st Service Corps for Business for Good.

A Teach for America meets Tesla, the 1st Service Corps for Business for Good will activate more than 1,000 SI360 alumni at startups and major companies nationwide on one-year service projects in the business sector. Their goal is to transform companies into socially responsible entities. SI360’s alumni base includes young CEO’s and accomplished innovators at companies such as Google, Tesla, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Accenture. SI360 alumni have been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, and MIC.

“SI360’s youth-led movement is here to change the business sector. We are dedicated to building businesses where social impact and the bottom line are valued equally, and the Service Corps for Business for Good will create that future by providing companies an affordable service to repurpose policies for social good and become more socially responsible,” said Allison Alt, SI360’s Executive Director.

The official announcement was made at SI360’s national Shift Series Conference in partnership with youth leaders from SI360, March for Our Lives, Black Lives Matter, the Head of Campaigns for DoSomething.org, Michaela Bethune, the largest organization mobilizing youth, and Board Chair of the American Sustainable Business Council, Steven Salsberg.

“The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) and our member network of more than 250,000 companies are thrilled to see the launch of Social Impact 360’s 1st Service Corps for Business for Good and to partner with its efforts. The spirit of responsible innovation that the youth of SI360 bring is exactly what business and our economy need today. The raising of youth voices and their strong drive to create more responsible and sustainable businesses is an important step to addressing the pressing issues of our time,” said David Levine, Co-Founder and CEO of ASBC.

SI360’s grassroots, peer-to-peer youth network was created by college students at Georgetown and acts as a Dead Poet’s Society for young social entrepreneurs, teaching youth to build businesses for a social purpose. SI360 plans to expand to 20 chapters in the next two years. SI360’s annual Shift Series conference was held on April 21-22, 2018 at Fordham University, McNally Amphitheatre, at Lincoln Center Campus, 140 West 62nd Street New York, NY 10023, from 10am-5pm EST, and featured pioneers in business for social change from Deloitte, Kenneth Cole, Ellevest, Vimeo, MIC, Raffa, Campbell’s Soup, BLab, Perlman & Perlman, and Phone2Action. Visit: https://socialimpact360.org/conference

About Social Impact 360

Social Impact 360 (SI360) is the first and largest mentoring organization in the country for training young social entrepreneurs at colleges nationwide. SI360 is dedicated to building a business sector where social impact is as valued as the bottom line. SI360 trains youth to build businesses to solve social issues, as well as how to create social impact in corporate America. For more information, please visit https://socialimpact360.org/.


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New Report Reveals That Global Philanthropy Is Booming, Yet Most Foundations Still Work In Isolation

The Global Philanthropy Report, conducted by researchers at Harvard Kennedy School’s Hauser Institute for Civil Society with funding from UBS, is the most comprehensive analysis to date of global philanthropic practices and trends.

Key findings:

  • The global philanthropy sector is young and growing fast, with 72 percent of foundations established in the past 25 years.
  • Foundations are highly concentrated geographically, with 60 percent of the over 260,000 identified by the report based in Europe and 35 percent in North America.
  • While the combined assets of the world’s foundations are estimated at close to USD 1.5 trillion, half have no paid staff and small budgets of under USD 1 million. In fact, 90 percent of identified foundations have assets less than USD 10 million.
  • Resources are highly concentrated in certain sectors, with education the most popular area for investment.
  • Despite this, 58 percent of the foundations identified do not collaborate with other foundations.

Press Release – Zurich, 25 April 2018 – Philanthropy around the world is growing rapidly, but resources are highly concentrated in certain sectors and coordination between philanthropic foundations is limited. These are the key findings of the Global Philanthropy Report, a first-of-its kind study launched today that was conducted by researchers at Harvard Kennedy School’s Hauser Institute with funding from UBS.

Developed over three years with inputs from twenty research teams across nineteen countries and Hong Kong, the report marks an important milestone in understanding the magnitude of global philanthropic investment and helping to create an evidence-based discussion on global philanthropy.

In recent years, philanthropy has witnessed a promising shift. Wealthy individuals, families, and corporations are looking to give more, to give more strategically, and to increase the impact of their social investments. A rapidly growing number of philanthropists are establishing foundations and institutions to focus, practise, and amplify these investments.

As the world is falling well short of raising the USD 5-7 trillion of annual investment needed to achieve the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, UBS sees the report findings as a call for philanthropists to work together to scale their impact.

Understanding this need for collaboration, UBS has established a global community where philanthropists can work together to drive sustainable impact. Established in 2015 and with over 400 members, the Global Philanthropists Community hosted by UBS is the world’s largest private network exclusively for philanthropists and social investors, facilitating collaboration and sharing of best practices.

Josef Stadler, Head Ultra High Net Worth Wealth, UBS Global Management:

“At UBS, we work with preeminent philanthropists daily. They are the risk takers and the innovators who are challenging the status quo of traditional development aid. We’ve spent over a decade partnering with our clients to help them create sustainable impact through their philanthropy.

This report takes a much-needed step towards understanding global philanthropy so that, collectively, we might shape a more strategic and collaborative future, with philanthropists leading the way towards solving the great challenges of our time.”

Paula D. Johnson, Senior Research Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School:

“This report is a milestone in our understanding of philanthropy around the world. Thanks to the collaboration of an extraordinary group of global researchers, we are beginning to appreciate the magnitude and vitality of the global foundation sector.”

Links

www.ubs.com/shaping-philanthropy


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