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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
social entrepreneurship, impact investing, philanthropy
and corporate social responsibility.

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Social Entrepreneurship

This category includes articles about social entrepreneurs, typically about businesses with a for-profit model with a social mission embedded into the fabric of the business.

National Urban League Celebrates the 58th Annual Equal Opportunity Dinner, A Star-Studded Affair Honoring McDonald’s President and CEO, Don Thompson and R&B Legend, Valerie Simpson

November 13, 2014 (New York, NY) – The National Urban League hosted its 58th Annual Equal Opportunity Dinner (EOD) on November 12, 2014 in New York City. At the event, held in the heart of Times Square at the New York Marriott Marquis, president and CEO of the National Urban League, Marc H. Morial thanked and bid farewell to outgoing National Urban League board chair John D. Hofmeister and welcomed new chairman, Michael F. Neidorff. Neidorff, who currently serves as chairman, president and CEO of Centene Corporation – was also the Gala Chair.

The dinner honored Don Thompson, President and CEO of McDonald’s Corporation, who received the 2014 President’s Award for his outstanding leadership and corporate stewardship. Grammy Award winner Valerie Simpson received the EOD Arts Award for her unparalleled contribution to music and R&B legend Freddie Jackson performed a stirring tribute to her.

In recognition of their generous support of the National Urban League, Wells Fargo was inducted into the League’s Five Million Dollar Hall of Fame and AT&T and UPS into the Ten Million Dollar Hall of Fame.

The dinner was hosted by Caroline V. Clarke, executive director of Black Enterprise and host of Black Enterprise Business Report, and David Ushery, anchor reporter of The Debrief with David Ushery on NBC 4 New York. Mezzo-soprano Alicia Hall Moran provided entertainment throughout the evening with stirring renditions of classics from the critically acclaimed The Motown Project.

The evening closed out with an EOD Post Gala Affair hosted by the National Urban League Young Professionals and Dessert Reception with music by DJ mOma.

Stella & Dot Foundation to Support Military Families for the Holidays with Buy One, Gift One Program

SAN FRANCISCO, NOVEMBER 5, 2014 – Stella & Dot Foundation announced today the launch of a ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ for the holidays in support of military families through a new partnership with military organizations throughout North America. The Stella & Dot ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ effective November 1st through November 30th will gift accessories to active duty members, female veterans, military wives and their teenage daughters during the holiday season. Since the program’s inception, Stella & Dot has gifted over $1 million in product.

Stella & Dot will distribute jewelry through targeted programs including; MOAA (Military Officers Association of America), donating to the MOAA spouse program to gift accessories to recently deployed service members, military spouses and women veterans of all ranks and services; MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region) providing gifts to enhance the quality of life for Canadian Forces families.

“This holiday season, we wanted to give a gift of our deep gratitude to the military families who give so much to us all. Our hearts are with every family that moves frequently and spends so much time apart to serve our country.” said Jessica Herrin, Stella & Dot CEO and Founder.

“The Military Officers Association of America’s Spouse Programs is honored that Stella & Dot has invited us to partner with them to thank our military families for the sacrifices they make” said Christine C. Gallagher, Deputy Director, Spouse and Currently Serving Programs. “With their generous donation, we are able to gift Stella & Dot jewelry to military spouses, mothers and daughters of our nation’s heroes.”

Stella & Dot Buy One, Gift One Items:

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Through the purchase of a scarf, Stella & Dot will donate an assortment of accessories as gifts to warm hearts during the holiday season.

To purchase a scarf from the collection or for more information, please visit: www.stelladot.com.

About Stella & Dot:

Stella & Dot is a boutique-style jewelry and accessories company reinventing the home-based, flexible entrepreneurship opportunity for the modern woman through its social-shopping business platform. Stella & Dot offers its on-trend, celebrity and editorial-coveted product line exclusively through a growing network of trained independent consultants (Stylists) across North America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Ireland and France. With a mission to give every woman the means to style her own life, Stella & Dot celebrates the collective spirit and recognizes its leaders through executive training, exclusive sales rewards, and a community that gives back to our home and abroad. Stylists earn sales commissions by selling at private in-home trunk shows and online with a best-in-class and innovative technology platforms. For more information, visit www.stelladot.com.

About The Stella & Dot Foundation:

The Stella & Dot Foundation engages and inspires our community to affect positive change in the lives of women and their families. In addition to our year-round global charity partner, Every Mother Counts, Stella & Dot also celebrates Autism Awareness Month in April, Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, and supports military families through our Buy One, Gift One program in November. To date, the Stella & Dot Foundation has raised over $1.6 million towards causes important to our community. Together, through the donations made possible by the sale of our foundation accessories, our collective small acts add up to make a big impact.

About Military Officers Association of America (MOAA):

Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is the nation’s largest officers association with more than 380,000 members from every branch of service, including active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, and former officers and their families and survivors. MOAA is a nonprofit and politically nonpartisan organization and an influential force in promoting a strong national defense. MOAA represents the interests of service members and their families in every stage of their lives and careers, and for those who are not eligible to join MOAA, Voices for America’s Troops is a nonprofit MOAA affiliate that supports a strong national defense. For more information, visit www.moaa.org or www.voicesfortroops.org/.

About MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region):

The Military Family Resource Centre–National Capital Region (MFRC-NCR) is a home away from home for families. MFRC governed by a volunteer community-based board of directors and is the only local not-for-profit organization that directly supports the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) families in the National Capital Region, which consists of 11,000 military members (Regular and Reserve) 8,000 spouses and 9,000 children. The MFRC-NCR is committed to enriching the lives of our community by providing relevant programs and services that empower, encourage and strengthens our military families, aided by community partnerships. MFRC-NCR offers services, such as emergency short-term housing units, workshops and support groups, respite and emergency childcare, and mental health services are available to military families at all times, especially in difficult times. For further information, please visit www.mfrc-ncr.org

Women Presidents’ Organization Selects AXA as Exclusive Retirement Plan Provider

New York, NY (November 12, 2014) — The Women Presidents’ Organization (WPO) has selected AXA as its exclusive retirement plan provider. AXA will become the preferred provider of cost-effective retirement planning products and services for the nonprofit, peer advisory group for leaders of multimillion dollar companies. The WPO comprises women entrepreneurs throughout the world who have built and led multimillion dollar businesses.

Women-led companies contribute nearly $3 trillion to the economy and make up 16 percent of all jobs. According to WPO’s recent Business Outlook Survey, more than a quarter of WPO member businesses (28 percent) have achieved a growth rate of 25 percent or more in 2014. When compared with average U.S. business growth of 5.4 percent, these top women-led businesses have outperformed the national average by three times or more. Close to half (42 percent) of WPO members project 2014 revenues to top $5 million, and 25 percent project revenues of over $10 million.

As women leaders address the internal factors that impact revenue, they are most concerned with challenges such as growing their business to scale (17 percent), finding and retaining good employees (16 percent), maintaining/increasing profit margins (15 percent) and growth of competition (8 percent).

“WPO members lead a wide array of industries,” said Marsha Firestone, Ph.D., WPO President & Founder.” “One of the key operational challenges they face is helping their employees secure their financial future. The AXA suite of retirement planning products and services offers a rich resource to identify financial goals and select options that balance risk and reward.”

AXA provides turnkey retirement planning programs to both self-employed and small- to mid-size business owners as a benefit to their employees.

“Providing a retirement plan can help small businesses reward and retain valuable employees,” said Tracey Gray-Walker, managing director of AXA’s Association Business.

The range of AXA retirement options includes financial planning strategies, trusts, custodial services, recordkeeping, reporting, and plan design recommendations and implementation. AXA also provides plan participants with account information through custom websites and telephone service. Additionally, the company provides an ongoing education program to help plan participants take greater control of their retirement.

About AXA Association Retirement Solutions

AXA Association Retirement Solutions is the name under which various AXA Equitable annuity products are marketed for the purpose of funding retirement plans for association members. “AXA” is a brand name of AXA Equitable Financial Services, LLC and its family of companies, including AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company (NY,NY), MONY Life Insurance Company of America (AZ stock company, administrative office: NY, NY), AXA Advisors, LLC, and AXA Distributors, LLC. In business since 1859, AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company is a leading financial protection company and one of the nation’s premier providers of life insurance, annuity, and financial products and services distributed to individuals and business owners through its retail distribution channel, AXA Advisors, LLC (member FINRA, SIPC) and to the financial services market through its wholesale distribution channel, AXA Distributors, LLC. AXA S.A. is a Paris-headquartered holding company for a group of international insurance and financial services companies, including AXA Equitable Financial Services, LLC companies. AXA S.A. is a worldwide leader in financial protection strategies and wealth management with 102 million clients in 56 countries as of December 31, 2013. The obligations of AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company and MONY Life Insurance Company of America are backed solely by their claims-paying ability. Follow AXA on Twitter and like us on Facebook. For more information, visit www.axa.com.

About the Women Presidents’ Organization

The WPO is the ultimate affiliation for successful women entrepreneurs worldwide. In monthly meetings across the world, women from diverse industries invest time and energy in themselves and their businesses to drive their corporations to the next level. WPO members’ average revenue is $13 million, generating aggregate revenue of $19 Billion. Local WPO chapters are coordinated by a professional facilitator and meet monthly to share business expertise and experience in a confidential setting. For more information, call 212-688-4114 or visit www.womenpresidentsorg.com. Follow WPO on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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Stella & Dot Foundation to Support Military Families for the Holidays with Buy One, Gift One Program

SAN FRANCISCO, NOVEMBER 5, 2014 – Stella & Dot Foundation announced today the launch of a ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ for the holidays in support of military families through a new partnership with military organizations throughout North America. The Stella & Dot ‘Buy One, Gift One Program’ effective November 1st through November 30th will gift accessories to active duty members, female veterans, military wives and their teenage daughters during the holiday season. Since the program’s inception, Stella & Dot has gifted over $1 million in product.

Stella & Dot will distribute jewelry through targeted programs including; MOAA (Military Officers Association of America), donating to the MOAA spouse program to gift accessories to recently deployed service members, military spouses and women veterans of all ranks and services; MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region) providing gifts to enhance the quality of life for Canadian Forces families.

“This holiday season, we wanted to give a gift of our deep gratitude to the military families who give so much to us all. Our hearts are with every family that moves frequently and spends so much time apart to serve our country.” said Jessica Herrin, Stella & Dot CEO and Founder.

“The Military Officers Association of America’s Spouse Programs is honored that Stella & Dot has invited us to partner with them to thank our military families for the sacrifices they make” said Christine C. Gallagher, Deputy Director, Spouse and Currently Serving Programs. “With their generous donation, we are able to gift Stella & Dot jewelry to military spouses, mothers and daughters of our nation’s heroes.”

Stella & Dot Buy One, Gift One Items:

Through the purchase of a scarf, Stella & Dot will donate an assortment of accessories as gifts to warm hearts during the holiday season.

To purchase a scarf from the collection or for more information, please visit: www.stelladot.com.

About Stella & Dot:

Stella & Dot is a boutique-style jewelry and accessories company reinventing the home-based, flexible entrepreneurship opportunity for the modern woman through its social-shopping business platform. Stella & Dot offers its on-trend, celebrity and editorial-coveted product line exclusively through a growing network of trained independent consultants (Stylists) across North America, the United Kingdom, Germany, Ireland and France. With a mission to give every woman the means to style her own life, Stella & Dot celebrates the collective spirit and recognizes its leaders through executive training, exclusive sales rewards, and a community that gives back to our home and abroad. Stylists earn sales commissions by selling at private in-home trunk shows and online with a best-in-class and innovative technology platforms. For more information, visit www.stelladot.com.

About The Stella & Dot Foundation:

The Stella & Dot Foundation engages and inspires our community to affect positive change in the lives of women and their families. In addition to our year-round global charity partner, Every Mother Counts, Stella & Dot also celebrates Autism Awareness Month in April, Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, and supports military families through our Buy One, Gift One program in November. To date, the Stella & Dot Foundation has raised over $1.6 million towards causes important to our community. Together, through the donations made possible by the sale of our foundation accessories, our collective small acts add up to make a big impact.

About Military Officers Association of America (MOAA):

Military Officers Association of America (MOAA) is the nation’s largest officers association with more than 380,000 members from every branch of service, including active duty, retired, National Guard, Reserve, and former officers and their families and survivors. MOAA is a nonprofit and politically nonpartisan organization and an influential force in promoting a strong national defense. MOAA represents the interests of service members and their families in every stage of their lives and careers, and for those who are not eligible to join MOAA, Voices for America’s Troops is a nonprofit MOAA affiliate that supports a strong national defense. For more information, visit www.moaa.org or www.voicesfortroops.org/.

About MFRC-NCR (Military Family Resource Center – National Capital Region):

The Military Family Resource Centre–National Capital Region (MFRC-NCR) is a home away from home for families. MFRC governed by a volunteer community-based board of directors and is the only local not-for-profit organization that directly supports the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) families in the National Capital Region, which consists of 11,000 military members (Regular and Reserve) 8,000 spouses and 9,000 children. The MFRC-NCR is committed to enriching the lives of our community by providing relevant programs and services that empower, encourage and strengthens our military families, aided by community partnerships. MFRC-NCR offers services, such as emergency short-term housing units, workshops and support groups, respite and emergency childcare, and mental health services are available to military families at all times, especially in difficult times. For further information, please visit www.mfrc-ncr.org

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The Beeck Center Releases Report on How Governments Can Pay for Success

Experts Discuss Advancement of Outcomes-Based Agreements for Solving Social Challenges

WASHINGTON, DC (November 12, 2014) — The Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation at Georgetown University today released its report on outcomes-focused policy, which illustrates how the public sector can realign funding to reform social service delivery and improve results. Governments traditionally pay for the number of people served, or they have arbitrary benchmarks and protocols that often become the main focus of administrators at the expense of driving results. This report, Funding for Results: A Review of Government Outcomes-Based Agreements, provides a guide for leaders looking to design programs to ensure public funds are properly managed to attain results. The full report is available at www.driveimpact.org.

“The Beeck Center is proud to provide this resource to policy makers around the world. We hope this enables them to create sustainable programs that yield results. The report offers a framework for government on how to align incentives to ensure public funds are managed to achieve social outcomes,” said Sonal Shah, Executive Director of the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation. “Our mission is to drive impact by encouraging leaders to implement innovative methodologies and tools to address and improve our social challenges.”

The Beeck Center convened a panel of experts, with interactive sessions to discuss and design outcomes-based agreements to achieve results. Participants, including Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; Jim Shelton, Deputy Secretary of U. S. Department of Education; Ben McAdams, Salt Lake County Mayor; and James Sorsenson, Entrepreneur and Investor, James Lee Sorenson Global Impact Investing Center at the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah, discussed how public sector policy can spark creative solutions for today’s social problems.

The Beeck Center’s report provides a framework for governments to design and implement outcomes-based agreements to pay for success. The report highlights five illustrative case studies which offer key insights. The case studies include the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services and the Australian government’s employment services program.

  • Tennessee Department of Children’s Services Performance Based Contracting: The state of Tennessee directed the child welfare system to focus on one clear goal of moving children into permanent homes more quickly. Providers that exceeded the baseline performance were rewarded, while those that performed below baseline were penalized. This model nearly cut in half the average time a child spends in temporary care from over 22 months to just 14 months.
  • Australian Employment Services: The Australian government incentivized non-governmental employment service providers to link job training with real jobs. Between 1995 and 2005, the cost to place each job seeker dropped from $16,000 to $3,500. Australia saw a 55% improvement in the placement of the most disadvantaged job seekers .

“The Beeck Center’s report provides a crucial roadmap for leaders at all levels of government,” said Stephen Goldsmith, Director of the Innovations in American Government Program at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. “Outcomes-based agreements are valuable tools that can dramatically increase efficiency and reduce administrative burdens and costs, while ensuring that programs accomplish their intended objectives.”

The report offers a framework for governments to design and implement outcomes-based agreements. These agreements are most successful when: 1) governments can measure performance and align incentives in a transparent and consistent manner; 2) there is a willingness to be flexible — learn, evolve, and shift current structures to achieve stated goals; 3) governments build relationships with all stakeholders

Governments have an opportunity to find innovative ways to re-align incentives and pay for success. This report provides guidance to government, philanthropy and social sector leaders interested in designing new types of agreements that can achieve results.

The full report can be viewed at http://www.driveimpact.org.

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Corporate, Nonprofit, Social Enterprise, Hybrid Leaders Gather to Discuss Future of Sustainable Growth and Giving

Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20 Brings 230 Executives Together to Discuss Challenges and Opportunities in Nonprofit Sector, Corporate Philanthropy and Responsibility, More

New York – During a time of change and uncertainty for nonprofits and businesses alike, the Sustainability Summit will gather here on Thursday, November 13 offering a chance for business, philanthropy and mission-driven leaders to discuss both the future of the nonprofit sector and the role of corporations in building a sustainable world – both for organizations and for society as a whole.

“As we’ve evolved as a company and expanded our work and our own efforts to become a better corporate citizen, we’ve realized how important it is to collaborate with and support all socially responsible enterprises,” said Tom Raffa, CEO and Managing Partner of Raffa, P.C., of the need for this conversation. “We are seeing significant shifts within and across the sectors. We must see more nonprofits moving from dependency relationships to sustainable, capitalized organizations and more for-profits rethinking their traditional quantifiable business metrics and taking corporate consciousness to new levels. We all know that we need to strike a better balance – one that puts the value of profit, society and environment on equal footing and ensures that what we do today to meet our needs, will not compromise the ability of future generations to meet their needs. This is our challenge – and our collective responsibility.”

As part of Raffa’s 30th anniversary, the consulting firm is hosting a series of discussions on the future of the nonprofit sector and how for-profit businesses, like Raffa, are changing their own metrics for success with an eye towards more than profits alone. In June, Raffa hosted a summit in Washington, D.C. focused on empowering nonprofits and furthering collaboration within and across the sectors. The Sustainability Summit will expand that conversation to explore how new models for progress and social responsibility efforts across all sectors can be effectively leveraged for success.

Executives from nonprofits of all sizes will be attending, including representatives from the Red Cross, Fedcap, Samaritan Village, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Jewish Federations of North America, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, American Civil Liberties Union, Serious Fun Children’s Network, American Jewish World Service, YMCA of Greater New York, Lifespire and the ASPCA. Leaders from B Corps, social enterprise and hybrid business structures will be part of the conversation as well.

WHAT:

Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20

WHEN:

November 13, 2014, 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

WHERE:

Lighthouse Guild
111 E. 59th Street New York, NY 10022

WHO:

More than 200 leaders from corporate and nonprofit sectors, including:

Dan Pallotta (Keynote Address at 8:45 a.m.*)
Tom Raffa, Raffa P.C.
Dan Osusky, B Labs
Asha Curran, 92nd Street Y
Michael Bzdak, Johnson and Johnson
Stephen K. Orr, Orr Associates, Inc. (OAI)
Allen Bromberger, Perlman & Perlman LLP
John Sabino, Capital One Bank
Mitchell Netburn, Project Renewal
Kathryn Haslanger, JASA
Tino Hernandez, Samaritan Village, Inc.
Marcos Salazar, Be Social Change

The agenda and full list of speakers is available here. Discussions to be held on Thursday, include:

  • New Models for Progress: Overcoming Barriers to Sustainability*
  • Making Corporate Partnership Work
  • Merging for Success*
  • Changing Leadership for Today’s Sustainability
  • Recruiting and Leveraging Corporate Board Members
  • Restructuring the Business of Giving*
  • Fundraising with Wall Street in Mind
  • Strategic Partnerships Through a Legal and Funding Lens
  • Building Social Engagement Through Authentic Marketing
  • Measuring and Communicating Impact

* Select panel discussions will be streamed live with support from Gold Sponsor Orr Associates Inc (OAI). Register here to watch the webcast live.

The Sustainability Summit: Vision 20/20 is hosted by Raffa, P.C., with support from OAI, and contributing sponsors Perlman & Perlman, LLP, Capital One Bank, Anybill and InfoGroup.

About Raffa

Founded in 1984, Raffa is an accounting, consulting and technology firm based in Washington, D.C. dedicated to service and community. As a B-Corp certified, national Top 100, “Best of the Best” CPA advisory firm specializing in nonprofits and socially-responsible businesses, Raffa performs high-quality audits annually and provides support to help organizations across the country effectively and efficiently manage their most critical processes. The firm’s highly specialized professionals provide planning, consulting and compliance services to entrepreneurs, families, nonprofits and social enterprises. Offering a deep bench of expertise across an array of services, including accounting and tax, human resources, technology and consulting, Raffa’s client-centric, customized approach helps each client meet its potential and ensures each client’s success is sustained and maintained. Learn more at www.raffa.com.

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JA Worldwide Unveils New Online Program To Ignite Teen Interest In Science & Technology Careers

JA Worldwide and Alcoa Foundation Team Up to Implement Global STEM Education Initiative for Teens

Boston, Mass.JA Worldwide (JA) today announced a new partnership with Alcoa Foundation to launch a global curriculum that will bring enhanced STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education to middle and high school students. JA Worldwide received a $750,000 investment from Alcoa Foundation to create JA Assembling Your Career, a program comprised of supplemental STEM career sessions for students in JA markets across the globe.

The international job market is becoming increasingly dependent on qualified applicants with formal STEM education. Recent predictions show that 85 to 95 percent of jobs will require STEM skills by 2020. JA Assembling Your Career encourages students to think about how their current skills and interests will serve them in future high-growth, high-demand careers. JA Assembling Your Career contains three interactive, STEM-focused activities that can be used by volunteers or teachers in the classroom as stand-alone activities, or as an enhancement to existing high school JA programs.

“The international job market is becoming increasingly dependent on qualified applicants with formal STEM education. In fact, recent data from the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training shows that 85 to 95 percent of jobs will require STEM skills by 2020,” said Sean C. Rush, president and chief executive officer of JA Worldwide. “Junior Achievement believes in the boundless potential of youth. Through our partnership with Alcoa Foundation we can bring customized STEM education and career readiness tools to youth and help inspire a new generation of scientists, engineers and manufacturers.”

Piloted internationally in 2013, JA Assembling Your Career’s first implementation sites include Brazil, France, Mexico, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, with expansion into additional countries planned for future years. Additionally, the JA Assembling Your Career curriculum will be made available to other partners such as Skills USA, a career and technical student organization, and Project Leap, a leadership development program for nonprofit industry professionals, to further expand its reach.

Alcoa Foundation works with partners to inspire future STEM innovators and introduce students to manufacturing, showcasing the creativity and career mobility that the industry offers. JA Assembling Your Career promotes the importance of STEM skills on an international scale and help middle and high school students understand the global career opportunities available to them in manufacturing.

“The Alcoa Foundation partnership with Junior Achievement is helping young people around the world imagine a new path for their future,” said Esra Ozer, Alcoa Foundation president. “Together, we believe that by exposing more students to STEM programs, they can learn the skills needed to be successful in their future careers.”

For more information on JA Assembling Your Career, click here. To learn more about the Alcoa Foundation, please click here.

About JA Worldwide (Junior Achievement)

JA Worldwide is one of the largest global NGOs dedicated to addressing fundamental social and economic challenges of young people by educating and empowering them to transform their future and own their economic success. Through cutting-edge, experiential learning in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship, JA Worldwide effectively broadens the canvass of possibility for young people and enriches their ability to contribute to the strength of their families, communities, and economies. The 121-country JA Worldwide network is powered by 400,000 volunteers and mentors from all sectors of society, reaching 10.6 million students around the world. Visit www.jaworldwide.org for more information.

About Alcoa Foundation

Alcoa Foundation is one of the largest corporate foundations in the U.S., with assets of approximately $470 million. Founded 62 years ago, Alcoa Foundation has invested more than $590 million. In 2013, Alcoa Foundation contributed more than $22 million to nonprofit organizations throughout the world, building innovative partnerships to improve the environment and educate tomorrow’s leaders for careers in manufacturing and engineering. The work of Alcoa Foundation is further enhanced by Alcoa’s thousands of employee volunteers who share their talents and time to make a difference in the communities where Alcoa operates. Through the Company’s signature Month of Service program, in 2013, a record 62 percent of Alcoa employees took part in nearly 1,300 events across 24 countries, benefiting more than 505,000 people and 1,900 nonprofit organizations. For more information, visit alcoafoundation.com and follow @AlcoaFoundation on Twitter.

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The Food Lab at The University of Texas at Austin Announces Top 21 Finalists for Food Challenge Prize

Four states, two student teams among those represented in competition for $30,000 on Showcase Day, February 14, 2015

(AUSTIN, Texas)The Food Lab at UT, a catalyst for experimentation and innovation in the food system, announced the top 21 finalists for its inaugural Food Challenge Prize today. More than 120 registrants entered the early-stage business startup competition encouraging innovation within four categories of the global food system: Healthy Eating; Inputs and Production; Processing, Packaging and Safety; and Storage and Distribution.

A team of judges from the Food Lab’s advisory committee selected the finalists who are now being paired with industry mentors in preparation for the Food Challenge Showcase on February 14, 2015. On Showcase Day, a winner in each category will receive $5,000; a grand prize winner will be awarded $10,000.

The finalists cover a wide range of concepts and businesses from mobile apps to food safety testing. Examples include Hopper Foods from Austin, Texas, a startup that wants to create great tasting, nutritious insect-based food products. Sereneti Kitchen from Atlanta is building a robotic arm to automate household food preparation. Sproot from Somerville, Mass., prepares and delivers fresh lunches daily to schools, runs children’s cooking classes, and educates parents and school communities about healthy food. Revive Foods from San Francisco is competing with a social enterprise that produces healthy food products from surplus fruits or vegetables that would otherwise go to waste.

“It’s exciting to see such a creative and diverse group enter our first competition,” said Dr. Robyn Metcalfe, founder and director of the Food Lab at UT. “The finalists also represent a wide range of business backgrounds, from students to serial entrepreneurs with a number of successes under their belts. We look forward to the next few months when our mentors will join the finalists to prepare for Showcase Day in February.

Along with Metcalfe, advisors on the finalist selection team included Carol Thompson, founder of The Thompson Group, Shawna Butler, executive producer of TEDxAustin, Shari Wynne, founder and CEO of Incubation Station, Manuel Rosso, founder of Food on The Table and Ben Dyer, entrepreneur-in-residence at the Cockrell School of Engineering at UT – Austin.

Showcase Day for the Food Lab Challenge will take place February 14, 2015, from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. at the Norman Hackerman Building on the University of Texas campus. The event is open to the public and free of charge.

The 21 finalists:

  1. Aspire Food Group US (formerly World Ento)
  2. Tastebud
  3. BeeHex, Inc. (SMRC Spin-off Company)
  4. BioPod
  5. CitySprout
  6. Clever Carrot Catering
  7. Cramen
  8. EdiBags
  9. “Go Fresh!” Products
  10. GoodBot
  11. Hopper Foods, LLC
  12. PHW Green Food Lab, LLC
  13. Prodrax, LLC
  14. Revive Foods
  15. Safelain
  16. Sereneti Kitchen
  17. Sproot
  18. StitZii
  19. Stretch Recipes, Inc.
  20. Ten Acre Organics
  21. WashCutPrep

For more information on the Food Lab Challenge Prize, please visit the website.

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ClassWallet Gratudates from Techstars Kaplan EdTech Accelerator

Appoints Neil Steinhardt, former CEO of Skrill USA, as SVP

(Miami, FL) November 11, 2014. ClassWallet is proud to be one of 11 Education Technology startups to graduate from the 2014 Class of the Kaplan EdTech Accelerator, powered by Techstars. The prestigious three-month program awards $20,000 in equity investment from Techstars and grants access and mentorship to top entrepreneurs, investors, industry influencers and Kaplan executives.

Companies benefit from market insights and feedback from Kaplan’s 1 million active students, 10,000+ instructors, 300+ U.S. school districts and 20+ university partners worldwide. The program culminates with a Demo Day presentation to angel investors, venture capital, and press in New York. Click here to watch the ClassWallet Demo Day Presentation.

“Kaplan EdTech Accelerator proved to be a transformative experience,” says ClassWallet CEO Jamie Rosenberg. “It introduced ClassWallet to a world-class network of education technology leaders and funders. It was an incredible experience both from a personal and company perspective. The impact has been immediate. Our company growth has accelerated, we’ve signed new partners, and have welcomed great new members to our management team.”

After the event, the company announced the hiring of Neil Steinhardt, former CEO of Skrill USA, Inc., as SVP. The appointment is a pivotal step in ClassWallet’s ongoing transformation from an EdTech startup to a FinTech leader.

Steinhardt brings valuable experience to the role from his previous positions within the Skrill Group as Managing Director of paysafecard.com and CEO of Skrill USA. Steinhardt’s previous senior roles as VP of Product Management at IPP of America and EVP of The Pet Channel Network provide valuable early-stage experience to apply in this new role. Combined, the two companies raised nearly $35M in venture funding during his tenure.

As SVP, Steinhardt will be responsible for the continued growth of the ClassWallet offering including the payment infrastructure and sales efforts. He will be heavily involved in shaping the evolution of the company’s product offering.

To learn more, visit www.ClassWallet.com or find us on Twitter @classwallet.

ABOUT CLASSWALLET

ClassWallet is the first virtual wallet created for schools. ClassWallet empowers teachers to use free, consumer-grade technology to replace a $23B system that relies on cash, checks, and interoffice envelopes. Through ClassWallet, administration, parents and vendors connect with teachers for peer-to-peer funding and purchasing for anything from supplies to technology to field trips. Because the entire process is digital, everything is cashless, trackable, and transparent. More than 40 of the top education vendors accept ClassWallet for payment.

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Chilean Entrepreneurs Aiming to Improve Science Education Win Top Prize at Intel Global Challenge

Intel Foundation Awards $100,000 for Excellence in Entrepreneurship and Innovation

NEWS HIGHLIGHTS

  • Lab4U of Chile won the grand prize in the 2014 Intel Global Challenge, receiving a $50,000 award from the Intel Foundation.
  • Lab4U developed a promising technology that allows for a mobile phone to be used as a science instrument through built-in sensors, and a crowd-learning web platform to share lab results.
  • Other top-placing teams were Neuron Guard of Italy, which developed an on-site, integrated solution for the treatment of acute brain damage; Karisma Kidz of the United Kingdom, which created an app to increase emotional intelligence in children through gamification; and Servtech of Taiwan, which invented a technology infrastructure to leverage big data in the manufacturing industry.

SILICON VALLEY, Calif., Nov. 7, 2014 – Lab4U, a team of student entrepreneurs from Chile, has won the 10th annual Intel Global Challenge, a global business plan competition that encourages student entrepreneurs to tackle some of the world’s most pressing issues through computing technology. The competition provides a unique entrepreneurship experience by giving teams access to top venture capitalists and investors in Silicon Valley.

Lab4U, comprised of team members from the University of Chile and a local cancer research center, developed a technology that uses a mobile phone as a science instrument in order to democratize laboratory equipment. Through built-in mobile sensors and a crowd-learning web platform, users can prepare, analyze and share lab results via a mobile phone. The team, inspired to create this technology by a lack of lab instruments at their own university, aims to change the way science is taught and how experiments are performed.

“At Intel, we believe in giving today’s young innovators the opportunities and resources to foster their interest in entrepreneurship,” said Staci Palmer, Intel’s director of Global Strategic Initiatives and Marketing in the Corporate Affairs Group. “Through programs like the Intel Global Challenge, students from around the world, like Lab4U, are able to pursue their passion to create new technologies that positively affect people’s lives.”

The Intel Foundation awarded $100,000 total in cash prizes, including a $50,000 grand prize and three $15,000 awards for teams taking first place in the following categories: Internet, mobile and software computing; computing for social innovation; and Internet of Things and hardware. Additionally, a $5,000 prize for social media was awarded.

Innovations from the three first-place winners ranged from education to manufacturing. Neuron Guard of Italy developed an on-site, integrated solution for the treatment of acute brain damage to prevent irreversible loss after a stroke, sudden cardiac death or traumatic brain injury. Karisma Kidz of the United Kingdom created a mobile application called, “Moodville,” a gaming solution for children to increase their emotional intelligence through mood identification and management. Servtech of Taiwan invented a technology infrastructure to leverage information communication technologies in manufacturing. Through Servtech’s technology, factories can use big data to access machine conditions and detect anomalies in equipment. Plaze of Lebanon was awarded for their innovative approach to social media during the Intel Global Challenge.

The competition, held at the Haas School of Business at UC Berkeley, drew 26 teams from 20 countries around the world. These finalist teams were selected from more than 60 countries and nine regional competitions. Founded in 2005, the Intel Global Challenge is designed to motivate young entrepreneurs to develop innovative technologies that solve real-world challenges, build viable business models, and move that technology out of university labs and into the market.

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Over the past decade alone, Intel has invested more than $1 billion, and its employees have donated close to 4 million hours, to improve education in over 70 countries. For the latest Intel education news, visit www.intel.com/newsroom/education, join the Facebook group at www.facebook.com/Intel and follow Twitter updates at twitter.com/intelinvolved.

About Intel

Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) is a world leader in computing innovation. The company designs and builds the essential technologies that serve as the foundation for the world’s computing devices. As a leader in corporate responsibility and sustainability, Intel also manufactures the world’s first commercially available “conflict-free” microprocessors. Additional information about Intel is available at newsroom.intel.com and blogs.intel.com, and about Intel’s conflict-free efforts at conflictfree.intel.com.

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