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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
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Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

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Photography Strictly Prohibited: David McClister’s Americana


“David McClister has a wonderful eye. His photos are never a shock, meaning his pictures of me look exactly how I picture myself. He’s a joy to work with, and he never makes me feel like I’m being forced into anything. Still not sure if that’s because he’s sneaky and really good, or just really good.” – Jason Isbell

Morrison Hotel Gallery is honored to host the first exhibit of fine art music photographer David McClister’s sublimely intimate work, tellingly titled Photography Strictly Prohibited: David McClister’s Americana. David’s collection portrays some of Americana’s most beloved classic and contemporary artists in soulfully private moments. Threaded throughout the exquisite exhibit is also the story of how an amateur photographer quickly rose to prominence in his field. The show will open August 7th at Morrison Hotel Gallery SoHo, located at 116 Prince Street, and it will be preceded by a special, private reception on August 6th with an intimate, acoustic performance by Tift Merritt. The private opening reception is being sponsored by Lagunitas Brewing Company.

Patty Griffin and Robert Plant Americana Honors & Awards Rehearsal, Ryman Auditorium, Nashville TN © David McClister/courtesy of Morrison Hotel Gallery     Full credit must appear with image

Patty Griffin and Robert Plant
Americana Honors & Awards Rehearsal, Ryman Auditorium, Nashville TN
© David McClister/courtesy of Morrison Hotel Gallery
Full credit must appear with image

Photography Strictly Prohibited: David McClister’s Americana has the distinction of being one of Americana’s curated events in New York taking place alongside AmericanaFest NYC – a partnership with Lincoln Center’s Out Of Doors Series, August 7-9 – and preceding Americana’s 16th Annual Festival and Conference in Nashville, September 15-20.

Not many photographer’s first paying gig is shooting the cover of a tide-shifting album. For David, photographing Ryan Adams for his debut solo LP, Heartbreaker, ushered in a new period of fevered creativity. The contemplative cool of David’s cover image – Ryan laying down, eyes shut, nonchalantly taking a drag from a cigarette – signaled a new invigorated era for roots music. Previous to that landmark shoot, David was an established director of music videos.

That fateful shoot would transform David into one of the most in demand photographers of roots music. The trust David establishes with his subjects has enabled him to capture images that are both natural and stately. Photography Strictly Prohibited: David McClister’s Americana features a broad cross section of David’s gorgeous album cover work, including his legendary session with Ryan Adams from 15 years ago, along with elegantly emotive images of Kacey Musgraves, Alabama Shakes, Willie Nelson, Johnny Cash, Jason Isbell, Kings of Leon, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris, Robert Plant with Alison Krauss and The Avett Brothers.

“David McClister has worked with some of the most treasured musicians in the Americana landscape. His photographs and films don’t just reflect his subjects, they define them in so many ways,” gallery co-founder Peter Blachley explains. “Morrison Hotel Gallery is proud to exclusively represent David’s work.”

The Nashville-based veteran filmmaker and music video director grew up in the South, and first picked up a still camera at the urging of his wife. Through photographing local bands and musicians that he admired, he fell in love with the freedom and spontaneity of the medium. “Photography is very different from filming. In photography, you have a freedom and spontaneity you don’t get with directing. You can spend time with your subjects, have a conversation and get to know them,” David reveals.

Fourteen years after the Ryan Adams shoot David splits his time almost evenly between photo assignments and directing films, commercials and music videos. His photography has appeared on many major label artist releases, and in such distinguished publications as Rolling Stone, GQ, Esquire, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, Garden & Gun and Billboard.

Reflecting back on his journey, and his debut exhibit at MHG David says: “Honestly, it’s one of the greatest thrills – if not the greatest – in my career as a photographer. Morrison Hotel Gallery works with so many of my heroes – photographers that inspired me even before I know how to take pictures, and continue to inspire me every day.”

About Morrison Hotel® Gallery:

Morrison Hotel® Gallery (MHG) was founded in 2001 by former record company executive Peter Blachley, music retail industry professional Richard Horowitz, and legendary music photographer Henry Diltz. In 2012, author, director and photographer Timothy White joined the team, launching a West Coast gallery at the Sunset Marquis Hotel in West Hollywood and their newest gallery location at the W Hotel in Los Angeles, in 2015.

MHG is the world’s leading brand in fine art music photography representing 90 of the world’s finest music photographers and their archives. Their vast catalog of photography encompasses jazz, blues, and rock imagery spanning several generations through to today’s contemporary music artists and now includes iconic photographs in the world of sports as well. MHG has a robust online presence, featuring over 100,000 images searchable by photographer, music artist, band or concert.

With five locations including: Prince Street in SoHo; the Dream Hotel in the Meatpacking District; the Mens Market at the Americana Manhasset on Long Island; the Sunset Marquis Hotel in West Hollywood, and the W Hotel in Los Angeles, the company is at the forefront of culture.

Leading Next Gen Philanthropists, Impact Investors, and Social Entrepreneurs Gather at the United Nations to Accelerate Solutions to Global Problems

New York, NY — From July 22-25, 2015, Nexus Global Youth Summit is proud to host 500+ leading millennial philanthropists, impact investors, and social entrepreneurs from across the world at the United Nations to learn, discuss, and collaborate in accelerating solutions to global problems.

“We unite the millennial generation around the most pressing issues of our time to empower them to make the greatest impact with their social, political, and philanthropic capital,” said Rachel Cohen Gerrol, co-founder of Nexus.

This year the Nexus program will feature celebrated leaders of all generations including Alexander Soros, philanthropist; Ruma Bose, serial entrepreneur, philanthropist, investor, and author; Ray Chambers, philanthropist, humanitarian, and member of the United Nations Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and For Malaria; and Hamdi Ulukaya, philanthropist and CEO of Chobani.

Other global change-makers speaking at the Summit are Deepak Chopra, acclaimed author and Founder of The Chopra Foundation and the Chopra Center for Wellbeing; Meryl Davis, Olympic Gold Medalist; Mohombi, R&B singer-songwriter; Gabriela Isler, Miss

Universe 2013; Priyanka Jain, Girl Up Youth Champion; Robert Swan, the first person to walk to both the North and South Poles; and Tom Chi, Co-Founder of Google X.

The Summit will also spotlight impact technologies including a 3-D printed arm, life-saving drones, and empathy-enhancing virtual reality films.

Founded in 2011, Nexus unites its 2500+ members from over 70 countries into a community that seeks to create a new, expanded, and holistic definition of wealth, which integrates intellect, talent, time, and motivation with the financial. Nexus has hosted over 20 summits across five continents in only four short years to build bridges between exceptional young people from diverse backgrounds.

Nexus summits have inspired millions of dollars of donations to international nonprofits and have been the birthplace of many significant social enterprises including: Constellation, an imaging system that empowers patients to conduct quick, cost-effective, full body scans for signs of skin cancer; Good Super, Australia’s first social impact pension fund; and Satisfeito, a movement that prevents food waste and combats child hunger.

In conjunction with the Summit, Nexus is releasing a white paper entitled “Born to Give: A Human Approach to Catalyzing Philanthropy.” The report, supported by the Whitman Institute, proposes that focusing on the social and emotional development behind philanthropy is one of the most effective approaches to increasing the next generation’s impulse towards generosity.

“Social movements happen when a group of passionate and visionary leaders come together to make them happen. That is what we are trying to do and what this world needs more of,” said co-founder of Nexus, Jonah Wittkamper.

Nexus proudly operates as an initiative of the Giving Back Fund, a 501c3 non-profit organization.

How You Can Help Make Brave 25-yr-old Fashion Birthday Wishes Come True

Author and Philanthropist Debbi DiMaggio is partnering with George Mark Children’s House this summer to lead a cause marketing campaign (July 1 – August 31, 2015) and public call-to-action to send 25th birthday wishes to a special woman who may be having her last big birthday. Tashawna is a young adult, who is bravely facing a degenerative disease that has already taken the lives of her father and sister called Friedreich’s Ataxia (a rare inherited disease that causes nervous system damage and movement problems with symptoms like ALS).

Tashawna often visits George Mark Children’s House (Bay Area), which is where her sister sadly passed away, to receive comfort and support from this team. She loves to dance and keeps a positive attitude, despite finding herself in a wheelchair most of the time and watching her body fall to the disease.

When Tashawna was asked how she wanted to celebrate life for her 25th birthday this August, she smiled and said, “Fashion is my life, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate my 25th Birthday than by having a fashion party.” This “Make Fashion Dreams Come True for Tashawna’s 25th Birthday” campaign is a reminder to celebrate loved ones every day, and especially those with life-threatening diseases.

Because Tashawna and Debbi DiMaggio both love fashion and George Mark Children’s House, Debbi is planning fun fashion birthday celebrations for her in July and August through events, along with a request for birthday wishes from the public on social media and fashion birthday cards.

If this might be your final big birthday, how would you like to celebrate? Here’s what Debbi DiMaggio and the George Mark Children’s House are planning for Tashawna, and how you can easily get involved.

  1. Fashion Day for Tashawna (Wednesday, July 29, 2015)
    This fun fashion day will include make-up and hair styling (by Bounce Blowdry Bar) for Tashawna and her mother, along with a professional fashion photography shoot (provided by Cuyana, Union Square, San Francisco, CA), new dress and accessories provided by Cuyana.
  2. Happy Birthday Tashawna Videos on Social Media (July 1 – August 31, 2015)
    Everyone is invited to post “Happy Birthday Tashawna” videos on the George Mark Children’s House Facebook page ( and use the hashtags #celebratelife and #fashiondreamscometrue everywhere on social media. You can film a short video on your smartphone, and/or post a montage of birthday wishes like this one: Happy Birthday Tashawna from Comic-Con 2015
  3. Fashion Birthday Cards for Tashawna (July 1 – August 31, 2015)
    If you prefer to send a card, everyone mail fashion birthday cards to Tashawna at the George Mark Children’s House (2121 George Mark Lane, San Leandro, CA 94578). You can also post the cards on social media like this one.HappyBirthdayTashawna_BdayCard
  4. Big Birthday Life Celebration Party for Tashawna’s 25th (Saturday, Aug 29, 2015)
    On Saturday, August 29, 2015, Debbi DiMaggio will host a special 25th birthday party for Tashawna at George Mark Children’s House where they will showcase the “Happy Birthday Tashawna” Videos and Fashion Birthday Cards from the public and loved ones. The birthday cake will also include a photo of Tashawna from her fashion day photo shoot. Her actual 25th birthday is August 28, and the party is August 29, 2015

Debbi also encourages people to send other ideas for how to make Tashawna’s 25th birthday and life celebration summer even more special to George Mark Children’s House via Facebook – plus post Happy Birthday #CelebrateLife Videos for anyone special in your life with #fashiondreamscometrue on George Mark Children’s House Facebook.

Similar Debbi DiMaggio’s role model, Lady Diana, she asks everyone to help give the gift of a generous smile, open heart, and a helping hand to Tashawna and to anyone facing a life-threatening diseases who need out support and love.

Debbi DiMaggio primarily supports 5 Children’s’ Charities in the San Francisco Bay Area. These groups help children and young adults who are disadvantaged by disease, war, and poverty, including: George Mark Children’s House (pediatric palliative care home), Salvation Army, EBAC (East Bay Agency for Children), UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland and Boys and Girls Town of Italy (US supported charity in Rome, Italy that helps young adult war refugees build a life).

Keiretsu Forum Mid-Atlantic Announces July 2015 Chapter Meeting Schedule

Sessions Begin Soon in New York City, Philadelphia, Washington, DC and Pittsburgh

PHILADELPHIA – July 16, 2015 – Keiretsu Forum Mid-Atlantic, the angel investment firm and industry leader, has recently revealed its upcoming meeting schedule for members for the month of July. The purpose of these meetings is to allow members of local chapters to discuss a wide range of different topics including investment opportunities, the role of entrepreneurs in today’s modern business world and more. The meetings are also designed to give members an excellent opportunity to network and meet new, like-minded individuals within a comfortable and educational environment.

One notable topic of discussion has to do with a recent article that was published on Forbes experts indicated that thanks to the ability of entrepreneurs to develop new technology, evaluate market demand, and more, there has never been a more attractive time to start a company than the time we are currently living in. Forbes also spoke about how the impact that mobile devices and cloud-based technology have had on a wide range of different businesses is similar in scope and in significance to the Industrial Revolution of the previous generation.

The Forbes article also discusses the idea that, because technological innovation allows companies the ability to stay private for a much longer period of time than they were afforded in the past, private investors as a result have more time to invest in the value creation curves of those organizations.

The K4-MA New York Chapter Forum meeting will take place on the Tuesday, July 21 at 8:30AM. Located at Loeb & Loeb at 345 Park Avenue at 51st Street in New York, the meeting is expected to take three and a half hours.

The K4-MA Philadelphia Chapter Forum Meeting will take place on Wednesday, July 22 at 8:00AM. Located at BakerHostetler on the 12th Floor of the Cira Center at 2929 Arch Street, the meeting is expected to take a full four hours.

The K4-MA Washington, DC Metro Chapter Forum Meeting will take place on Thursday, July 23. Located at BakerHostetler at 1050 Connecticut Avenue, the meeting is also expected to take a full four hours.

Finally, the K4-MA Pittsburgh Chapter Forum Meeting will take place on Friday, July 24. Located at Schnader Harrison on the 27th Floor of Fifth Avenue Place, the meeting is also expected to take four hours.

To find out more information about the July meetings that will be taking place at local Keiretsu Forum Mid-Atlantic chapters around the country, or to learn more about angel investment or the organization in general, please visit the official website at

Young Entrepreneur Grows Company, Strengthens Family And Community Ties

ROCHESTER, NY, JULY 17, 2015 ­— Gabby Griffin uses one word to describe the reason behind her entrepreneurial success–and that word is passion. The 17-year-old has become the sole distributor of tortillas on the Gulf Coast, and has expanded her business successfully, all before finishing her freshman year in college. The young CEO is entering her second year studying culinary arts at Faulkner State Community College, an opportunity she earned through a full scholarship awarded by LuLu’s Restaurant in Gulf Shores, Alabama.

In the fall of 2012, Griffin applied to her local Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) offered by the South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce.

“YEA! is a groundbreaking program that teaches middle and high school students how to make a job, not just take a job,” says Gayle Jagel, CEO and Founder of YEA!.

Throughout the class, students develop business ideas, write business plans, conduct market research, pitch their plans to a panel of investors for startup funds, and actually launch and run their own legal, fully formed companies and social movements. Griffin embraced this opportunity, and Gabby’s Tortillas was born–a company producing authentic tortillas that are made to order.

Upon graduating from YEA!, Griffin was offered many business opportunities, and her tortillas became a local hit. Griffin sold her tortillas at farmers’ markets on the weekends, and restaurants began lining up to purchase her tortillas, recipes were created using the famed ingredient, and soon the tortillas became a cultural influence, inspiring the creation of new menu items locally. The Baumhower Restaurant in Orange Beach has added “Gabby’s Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas” to its appetizer menu, leading customers to the young entrepreneur’s website. It became clear to Gabby that she would need the help of her family to sustain the demand.

“It has definitely brought my family and I closer together,” Griffin says. “I have an older brother in the National Guard who works the farmer’s market for me when he’s on leave, and my younger brother even helps out with whatever I need. We’ve never been this close before, and so I’m thankful that my business can provide a way for us all to work together.”

Griffin has two younger sisters who are excited about business as well. Griffin has helped them create their own lemonade stand, has taught them how to count money, how to market the product, and how to best service their customers. Griffin learned all of these skills and more while participating in the YEA! program, and admits that YEA! gave her the self-confidence she needed to start her own business.

“Everything you gain and learn from the YEA! program will be used over and over again in all aspects of the business world, as well as in school. Every student should have the opportunity to attend YEA!—it will change your life. I know it changed mine.”

What does the future look like for Gabby’s Tortillas? Griffin says that her dream is to operate her own tortilla factory, and distribute her products nationwide—a dream not too far from reality. The process has begun to open a tortilla and tamale factory in Robertsdale, Alabama the first of the year. She added that she will use her newly acquired culinary skills to enhance the original tortilla recipe, all the while offering her guidance and mentorship to aspiring young entrepreneurs. Griffin expects to earn her Associates Degree in Culinary Arts within the next year, at just 18 years old.

For middle and high school students interested in applying to their local YEA! program, go to

About YEA!

The Young Entrepreneurs Academy (YEA!) is a 501(c)(3) offering groundbreaking year-long classes that teach middle and high school students how to start and run their own businesses. Throughout the class, students develop business ideas, write business plans, conduct market research, pitch their plans to a panel of investors, and launch and run their own real, fully formed companies and social movements. The project-based program includes guest speakers from the local business community and behind-the-scenes trips to local companies and empowers students to take charge of their futures.

Founded in 2004 at the University of Rochester with support from the Kauffman Foundation, the Young Entrepreneurs Academy today serves thousands of students nationwide. In 2011, the United States Chamber of Commerce Foundation became a national sponsor and partner of the Academy to help celebrate the spirit of enterprise among today’s youth and tomorrow’s future leaders.

YEA! bridges the business and educational communities to fulfill its mission of teaching more students how to make a job, not just take a job. YEA! is made possible by The Kauffman Foundation, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and the E. Philip Saunders Foundation.

About the U. S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation is dedicated to strengthening America’s long-term competitiveness and educating the public on how the free enterprise system improves society and the economy.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.

About Sam’s Club

Sam’s Club®, a division of Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE: WMT), is a leading membership warehouse club offering savings and services to millions of members in 651 clubs in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Sam’s Club offers affordable access to innovative services for families and small business owners, including travel, payroll and HR services, online marketing, legal solutions, cash rewards and more. To learn more about saving time and money with Sam’s Club, visit

Nationwide Report On Professional Women Of Color At Work: Their Experiences, Perceptions And Views Of Advancement

Study of 1,370 Multicultural Women Shows Higher Career Satisfaction When Employers Promote Advancement and They Can Be Authentic Selves

NEW YORK, Friday, July 17, 2015 — A new nationwide Working Mother Research Institute study of 1,746 women employed in professional and managerial roles (with 1,370 of them identifying themselves as multicultural) examines the impact of race on careers: Fewer than half (48%) of the multicultural respondents are satisfied with their ability to move into a better position at their companies, and only 29% say they will definitely stay with their current company for the next three years. The survey, released today at the 2015 Multicultural Women’s National Conference, is posted here.

Multicultural Women at Work: The Working Mother Report, developed in partnership with Deloitte, found that the experiences of multicultural women at work are very different than those of white women. Fifty-one percent of white women feel their talent is the first thing noticed by colleagues when they walk into a room while only 39% of multicultural women do. Race is the first thing people notice about them, say 54% of black women and 36% of Asian women, and talent and gender were the top responses (both cited by slightly more than 40%) for Latinas.

Jennifer Owens, editorial director of the Working Mother Research Institute, says, “Within three decades, racial minorities are projected to outnumber whites in the U.S., but at most companies, women of color are not advancing to the decision-making ranks in representative numbers… Advancement programs, mentoring and well-supported networking groups are all key to making multicultural women more satisfied in their jobs—and pay raises are key to convincing them to stay.”

Deb DeHaas, Chief Inclusion Officer and National Managing Partner, Center for Corporate Governance, Deloitte LLP, says, “With our workforces becoming increasingly diverse, this research makes it abundantly clear that multicultural women are an important and largely untapped resource for organizations across corporate America. Frankly, business leaders may simply be challenged by how best to harness the power of this growing talent pool. ”

These are among the key findings from the WMRI Multicultural Women at Work study:

  • 55% of multicultural women say they would consider leaving their company in the next three years vs. 48% of white, non-Hispanic women.
  • The top three reasons why multicultural women and white women leave jobs were the same: Better pay (cited by 62% of women of color and of white non-Hispanic women), better opportunity to advance (52% of women of color and 48% of white women), followed by better work life balance (35% of women of color and 32% of white women).
  • Work life balance is crucial to retention. Sixty-three percent of multicultural women surveyed agree that flex has resulted in greater work life satisfaction; 72% have flexibility in how work gets done, and 54% in where work gets done.
  • Interestingly, only 41% of white women surveyed say they’d like to have a job with greater responsibility, compared with 54% of multicultural women, which breaks down into 55% of Asian Americans and blacks and 58% of Hispanics.
  • The vast majority of women report that pay raises are an important concern for staying with their company, including 94% of multicultural women and 95% of white women.

“The findings in “Multicultural Women at Work” survey illustrate how vital it is for companies to devise development programs for their multicultural employees,” says Subha Barry, vice president, general manager, Working Mother Media. “The leadership companies have experienced huge payback from helping their employees feel comfortable expressing themselves and laying a path to advancement.”

Power of Diversity

Do you bring special strengths to your company as a result of your race/background? 71% of Hispanic women, 72% of black women and 57% of Asian women agree, while only 43% of white women agree with the statement.

There is a vastly higher level of satisfaction for employees whose companies offer programs for advancement of women (94% of multicultural women in this category say they’re satisfied with their current job) vs. employees at companies that don’t (only 64% are satisfied); the same is true for programs intended to improve the advancement of minorities (93% vs. 63%).

The Importance of Authenticity

Multicultural women who say they are able to be themselves at work have significantly higher satisfaction scores than respondents who cannot (91% vs. 36% say they are satisfied with their current job).

Of those multicultural women who say they can be their authentic selves at work, 72% are excited to go to work each day (vs. 13% of those who can’t be their authentic selves) and 55% would not leave for a comparable position elsewhere (vs. 18% of those who can’t be their authentic selves).

About the Survey Methodology

The Working Mother Research Institute developed a survey and fielded it nationally through a series of email blasts sent by Survey Sampling International. A total of 1,746 individuals submitted online questionnaires, including 1,370 multicultural women and 400 women who identify themselves as white, non-Hispanic. The respondents’ average age is 40 and household income is $106,400. A total of 89% are employed full-time and 11% part-time.

About Working Mother Media

Working Mother Media (WMM), a division of Bonnier Corporation (, publishes Working Mother magazine and its companion website, The Working Mother Research Institute (, the National Association for Female Executives ( and Diversity Best Practices ( are also units within WMM. WMM’s mission is to serve as a champion of culture change. Working Mother magazine is the only national magazine for career-committed mothers. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest

100 Resilient Cities & Social Finance Launch ‘Resilience Pay For Success’ Initiative

NEW YORK – From the Impact Capitalism Summit in Nantucket, Mass. today, 100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) and Social Finance, a leading nonprofit organization dedicated to mobilizing capital to drive social progress, announced a strategic partnership to launch the first-of-its-kind “Resilience Pay for Success Initiative.” The move welcomes Social Finance into a prestigious group of 100RC Platform Partners, joining multinational corporations and NGOs, such as Amec Foster Wheeler, Microsoft, the World Bank, and others. The partnership will provide guidance and support to 100RC member cities in the United States exploring Pay for Success financing opportunities – commonly known as social impact bonds.

100RC was launched to help cities around the world become more resilient to the physical, social, and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. In large part, the initiative is made possible by creating partnerships between cities and experts in private, public and nonprofit sectors to develop resilience strategies and initiatives. Today’s partnership launch integrates Social Finance into the resilience-planning process offered by 100RC to help cities better understand their resilience risks and opportunities, and identify opportunities where a Pay for Success model can be utilized to implement a city’s resilience initiatives.

Social impact bonds are innovative public-private partnerships that measurably improve the lives of those in need by driving government resources toward effective social programs. A project begins with a challenge the government is trying to address, for example, improving early childhood education or cutting prisoner recidivism – challenges that are directly related to the social and economic stresses cities face. Impact investors provide upfront, flexible funding to scale-up a proven social intervention. A nonprofit delivers the intervention over a period of several years while an independent evaluator measures the program’s outcomes. If the outcomes meet predetermined levels of success, resulting in avoided costs and social value for government – such as reduced special education costs, or increased employment – then the government repays the investors their principle, plus a modest return. Pay for Success initiatives have launched in the United States and around the globe on diverse issues – such as recidivism and early childhood education – with highly anticipated social and financial returns. The “Resilience Pay for Success Initiative” is the first of its kind to foster city-based social impact bonds.

“Cities can’t just build resilience out of thin air – they need the right tools to do it,” said 100RC President Michael Berkowitz. “Support from Social Finance to assist cities in launching social impact bonds will provide capacity to fund critical resilience initiatives that may otherwise have been shelved due to competing budget priorities.”

“Governments at all levels, especially local governments, are looking for innovative ways to deliver and ensure better outcomes for their citizens,” said Tracy Palandjian, CEO and co-founder of Social Finance. “Cities are learning to do more with less, and Pay for Success offers a promising pathway to make better use of city resources, improve the lives of our cities’ most vulnerable, and help cities become more resilient. We are excited to join the 100RC Platform Partners to work with cities to explore Pay for Success.”

A preliminary assessment of a social impact bond launched in Peterborough, UK to combat recidivism has shown promising results. The initiative aimed to reduce recidivism among a group of 1,000 prisoners by 7.5% – the threshold to trigger a repayment of funds to the private sector financial partners who funded the effort. A 2014 status report showed recidivism among the cohort was reduced by 8.4% – meaning the program helped more people stay out of prison and the bond was on course for repayment, and setting a prime example for the promise of these public-private partnerships.

As an official 100RC Platform Partner, Social Finance will offer consultative services to US-based 100RC member cities, helping them to evaluate the viability of a potential Pay for Success initiative in their jurisdiction. Today’s announcement also opens up new avenues for partnership with other 100RC Platform Partners, particularly partners and entities working with cities to build and design social resilience initiatives.

100RC and its Platform Partners are dedicated to providing network cities with solutions that integrate big data, analytics, technology, resilience land use planning, infrastructure design, and new financing and insuring products. Not only do Platform Partners help to provide cities with tools they need to build resilience; they also influence the market as other resilience tools are developed.

In addition to engaging strategic Platform Partners, 100RC provides assistance to member cities through: funding for a Chief Resilience Officer to lead the resilience efforts, resources for drafting a resilience strategy, and membership in a global network of peer cities to share best practices and challenges.

About 100RC and the 100RC Challenge

100 Resilient Cities – Pioneered by The Rockefeller Foundation (100RC) is dedicated to helping cities around the world become more resilient to the physical, social and economic challenges that are a growing part of the 21st century. 100RC supports the adoption and incorporation of a view of resilience that includes not just the shocks – earthquakes, fires, floods, etc. – but also the stresses that weaken the fabric of a city on a day to day or cyclical basis. Examples of these stresses include high unemployment; an overtaxed or inefficient public transportation system; endemic violence; or chronic food and water shortages. By addressing both the shocks and the stresses, a city becomes more able to respond to adverse events, and is overall better able to deliver basic functions in both good times and bad, to all populations.

Cities in the 100RC network are provided with the resources necessary to develop a roadmap to resilience along four main pathways: 1) Financial and logistical guidance for establishing an innovative new position in city government, a Chief Resilience Officer, who will lead the city’s resilience efforts; 2) expert support for development of a robust resilience strategy; 3) Connecting member cities to solutions, service providers, and other partners who can help them develop and implement their resilience strategies; and 4) Membership in a global network of member cities who can learn from and help each other. Through these actions, 100RC aims not only help individual cities become more resilient, but will facilitate the building of a global practice of resilience among governments, NGOs, the private sector, and individual citizens.

The 100RC Challenge launched in 2013 as a $100 million commitment to build urban resilience.

Officials or leaders or major institutions from almost 400 cities applied to the Challenge, and the initial 32 cities were announced in December 2013. 100RC announced results of the second round of the challenge last December. For more into on the Challenge, visit:

100RC is financially supported by The Rockefeller Foundation and managed as a sponsored project by Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA), an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that provides governance and operational infrastructure to its sponsored projects.

Learn more: and RPA at

About Social Finance

Social Finance is a nonprofit organization that is dedicated to mobilizing capital to drive social progress. The organization focuses on structuring and managing impact investments that will unlock capital to fund effective solutions to persistent social problems and drive an outcomes-focused social sector. The firm develops Pay for Success projects and Social Impact Bonds, innovative multi-stakeholder opportunities that scale performance-driven social programs, delivering proven results to those in need.

HCA CEO Milton Johnson and Wife Denice Donate $10 Million to Create ‘Bridges to Belmont’ Endowed Scholarship Fund

Healthcare executive ‘pays it forward,’ giving back to community, high school and college alma maters

NASHVILLE, July 16, 2015 – A Stratford High School and Belmont College graduate giving back to his alma maters… A Peabody College alum and long-time teacher offering a gift to support deserving students… a couple who passionately believe in—and have personally experienced—the power education can have to dramatically change lives for the better.

Meet HCA Chairman and CEO Milton Johnson and his wife Denice, who Tuesday announced they were donating $10 million to Belmont University to create the “R. Milton and Denice Johnson Bridges to Belmont Endowed Scholarship Fund.” Launched in 2013, the Bridges to Belmont initiative was designed to enroll qualified, high potential students from Metro Nashville Public Schools who may not have previously been able to consider Belmont as an option. Bridges Scholars are currently selected from four Metro Nashville Public Schools—Stratford, Maplewood, Whites Creek and Pearl Cohn—and most of the scholars are first-generation college students.

Belmont President Dr. Bob Fisher said, “Milton and Denice showed their generous spirit from a young age, becoming supporters of Belmont right out of college and continuing their giving ways by serving on our Board and offering their time, energy and resources to countless activities across our campus. This gift raises that commitment to an even higher level, which demonstrates yet again their enduring dedication to education, philanthropy and this community. What makes this gift even more special is knowing the Johnsons’ story, knowing that Milton himself—a worldwide leader in healthcare and a pillar of Nashville—was once offered a similar opportunity through a Belmont College scholarship.”

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Milton Johnson attended Nashville’s Stratford High School, working multiple jobs to help his single mom support their family and forgoing many of the typical extracurricular activities most teenagers enjoy. It was a habit he continued during his tenure at Nashville State, balancing the weight of a full-time job with the stresses of completing college courses, believing education could someday catapult him into a different situation. He also began dating Denice at that time, who was studying at Peabody to be a teacher and who shared Milton’s passion for the power of education. Milton’s hard work paid off when he was offered an academic scholarship to what was then Belmont College, paving the way to an accounting degree and rapid career advancement in Nashville’s healthcare industry. Today’s announcement allows the Johnsons to “pay it forward,” giving potentially hundreds of young people an opportunity to better their situations and follow in the Johnson’s footsteps.

“As a high school student, I faced similar challenges as many of our Bridges to Belmont scholarship recipients,” said Milton Johnson. “I was blessed to have people in my life, like my mother, who believed in not only the value of education but also in my potential. Their encouragement, guidance and belief in me gave me confidence that with hard work and a scholarship from Belmont, I could achieve greater success than I ever thought was possible. That’s why Denice and I are pleased to provide this gift to the Bridges to Belmont program. My Belmont scholarship was a life-changing experience for me, and we want other Nashville public high school graduates to have the same opportunities at Belmont. We want these students to know that Belmont believes in them—we believe in them—and there are no limits to what they can achieve in life.”

Denice, who graduated from what was Madison High School in Nashville, added, “Education is the foundation for anyone to help themselves to get ahead in life, to better themselves. And for us, we believe ‘To whom much is given, much is required.’ We feel that strongly. We have been very fortunate in our lives so giving back is just not a question. And anybody who steps on the Belmont campus would be in awe of what they see. The students here are just unbelievable and are clearly in such a supportive Christian environment. We are honored to be a part of the Belmont community.”

Bridges to Belmont reflects a deliberate step on the part of Belmont’s administration to enhance the University’s cultural and ethnic diversity while also continuing efforts to provide higher education to students in Davidson County. Bridges to Belmont Scholars are awarded a full four-year scholarship that covers tuition, room, board, required fees and books (with Belmont funds being supplemented by appropriate state and federal grants). Throughout their higher education experience, they also are given academic support and faculty/staff mentors. In February, it was announced that the program would be expanding its scholarship offerings to 34 students, up from the original 25, for the Fall 2015 entering class.

Currently in its third year, the Bridges to Belmont cohort will include a total of 80 Scholars on campus this fall. Scholars’ majors of study range from commercial voice and accounting to biology and social work, and they are involved in activities across campus, including roles as orientation leaders, members of business and student activity groups and as intramural athletes. Scholars participate in community service projects in the summer and throughout the academic year. This summer alone the incoming class will give approximately 400 hours of community service.

R. Milton Johnson is chairman and chief executive officer of Nashville, Tennessee-based HCA where he began his healthcare career in 1982 following a period as a practicing CPA at Ernst & Young. In his role, Johnson leads a company that includes approximately 168 hospitals, 113 freestanding surgery centers in 20 states and the United Kingdom and was responsible for more than 20 million patient encounters in 2014. Denice Johnson graduated from Peabody College of Education and Human Development at Vanderbilt University and taught locally for nearly a decade at several schools, including the Kennedy Center Experimental School (now Susan Gray School on Peabody’s campus), the University School of Nashville and Woodmont Christian Preschool. Committed volunteers, Milton and Denise Johnson have supported a number of organizations within the community, including Partnership 2020, the Nashville Health Care Council, the United Way of Metropolitan Nashville, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts and the Women’s Auxiliary of the Salvation Army and Siloam Family Health Center.

Ranked No. 5 in the Regional Universities South category and named for the seventh consecutive year as one of the top “Up-and-Comer” universities by U.S. News & World Report, Belmont University consists of approximately 7,300 students who come from every state and more than 25 countries. Committed to being a leader among teaching universities, Belmont brings together the best of liberal arts and professional education in a Christian community of learning and service. The University’s purpose is to help students explore their passions and develop their talents to meet the world’s needs. With more than 80 areas of undergraduate study, 22 master’s programs and five doctoral degrees, there is no limit to the ways Belmont University can expand an individual’s horizon. For more information, visit

SDSU Launches Wine Education Program in Spain

Students will visit wineries, sample wines and travel to vineyards over the course of the program.

Wine Barrels Stacked in the Winery, Instagram Effect

Wine Barrels Stacked in the Winery, Instagram Effect

SAN DIEGO, Calif. (July 16, 2015) — Wine professionals and enthusiasts can take their knowledge to the next level with the debut of SDSU’s Wine Education Abroad program.

The first-ever cohort will experience nine days and nights of privately-guided wine and cuisine immersion in the Catalonia, Rioja and Basque regions of Spain, April 17 through 25, 2016.

Students will contrast the traditions of centuries-old wineries with those of modern ones, sample wines straight from the barrel, walk through vineyards by the sea, learn the harvest process, prune grapevines and even crush grapes underfoot.

Along the way, they will dine everywhere from an ancient wine cave to a medieval village to modernist pintxos bars.

“If you ever wanted to explore the wine and food of Spain, have someone take you to places you cannot get to on your own, and experience the essence and heart of three Spanish areas, this trip is for you,” said Deborah Lazear, CSW, a certified Spanish wine educator who will provide instruction throughout the excursion.

The tour is led by Spanish guide Ana Gabriela Serra, who specializes in providing tailored itineraries in this region of the world.

“Our tour guide has created relations with wineries that are not open to the public but will be open to us,” Lazear said. “The trip truly is exclusive.”

Students will travel by private transportation, enjoy private sommelier-level tours, experience private tours of vineyards and museums, and have private daily wine classes. Their instruction time will count toward one elective or intensive course in the SDSU Business of Wine program — of which Wine Education Abroad is a new division.

“Spain is not New World; it’s Old World,” Lazear said. “Students will get a first-hand experience of how history has molded wine in Spain and influenced the world.”

Wine Education Abroad is a new division of the College of Extended Studies’ professional certificate program in the Business of Wine. The Spain trip is open to all and limited to 20 participants. The registration deadline is Nov. 27, 2015.

For more information, visit the program website.

16 Innovative Startups With Ambition To Change The World Revealed

16 startups from across the globe with a mission to create positive change have been announced as finalists of The Venture. The forward-thinking businesses are competing to win a share of $1M in funding from Chivas Regal.

After receiving over 1,000 entries across five continents, Chivas Regal has selected a diverse shortlist of startups tackling a range of social and environmental issues; from a Colombian business using non-recyclable plastic and vegetable fibres to produce furniture, to a Japanese company developing a wireless field-monitoring system for farmers to assesses soil conditions and ultimately cut down on agricultural water waste. The 16 aspiring startups have been chosen to represent their local countries in The Venture global final for not only their potential to be profitable as a business, but also their ability to offer scalable and sustainable impact solutions.

Each finalist has a truly unique story to tell about the inspiration for their startup. David Gluckman, the founder of Lumkani, witnessed the devastating impact of shack fires in informal settlements in South Africa and decided to create an affordable fire detection device to mitigate the loss of life and property. Whereas Victoria Alonsoperez saw the impact the outbreak of foot and mouth disease had on the Uruguayan economy – creating poverty and unemployment – and made it her mission to develop a platform (Chipsafer) that would transform the way farmers monitor and care for their livestock in the future.

From May 11th to June 14th, the finalists will go head to head in a public vote and compete for an initial share of $250,000 (from the $1 million fund). People from across the world can view the finalist profiles and vote for their favourite at

Chivas Regal’s search will then culminate in San Francisco on July 24th when finalists pitch for the remaining share of the $1 million fund at The Venture Final Pitch event. Sonal Shah, former Director of the Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation in the White House under US President Barack Obama, is the latest judge to be announced alongside Adrian Grenier (actor, producer and social entrepreneur), Morgan Clendaniel (Editor of Fast Company’s Co.Exist) and Alex Ricard (Pernod Ricard Chairman and CEO).

Adrian Grenier commented:

“As someone who is hugely invested in social enterprises myself, it’s really eye opening to see what other entrepreneurs around the globe are up to and the issues they’re attempting to tackle. We have uncovered 16 amazing finalists whose vision, passion and commitment to the greater good should be an inspiration to us all. I encourage everyone to find out more about them and their stories and get voting…they need your votes!”

Richard Black, Chivas Regal Global Brand Director, added:

“Due to this being a global competition across five continents we’ve discovered an incredible collection of social entrepreneurs that are aiming to tackle a broad array of issues. As a brand we’re very proud to be putting a spotlight on these talented and driven business people and we can’t wait to see how the public respond with their votes.”

In the week leading up to The Venture Final Pitch, the finalists will attend an Accelerator Week in Silicon Valley, the epicentre of the start-up world, where they will receive mentorship from influential figures in social enterprise and companies such as venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, Google, Duarte and IDEO.

To find out more and to vote for your finalist visit

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