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MySocialGoodNews is dedicated to sharing news about
social entrepreneurship, impact investing, philanthropy
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Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe


This category includes articles that apply to social good in general and may include policy, practice and other stories relevant to everyone.

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Stephanie Aaronson joins Brookings as Vice President and Director of Economic Studies

Press Release – WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Brookings Institution announced today that Stephanie Aaronson has been appointed Vice President & Director of the Economic Studies program. Aaronson comes to Brookings from the Federal Reserve Board where she was most recently Assistant Director of the Division of Research and Statistics. She succeeds Ted Gayer, who was appointed Executive Vice President of the Institution in April. Aaronson will also hold the title of Senior Fellow in Economic Studies.

Of Aaronson’s appointment, Brookings President John Allen said, “It is my distinct honor to welcome Stephanie to the Brookings Institution. The depth of her experience in both academic research and organizational leadership make her uniquely qualified to guide the critical work of our Economic Studies program, and I look forward to working with her as a colleague and partner every step of the way.”

In her position at the Federal Reserve Board, Aaronson helped in the preparation of the economic forecast submitted to the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), provided policy analysis to the Board and FOMC in support of their monetary policy functions, and had oversight of sections that produce analysis, forecasting, and research regarding inflation, monetary policy, and macroeconomic activity and uncertainty. Aaronson’s own academic research focuses on labor markets, including the issue of why, over the past two decades, an increasing share of Americans are not participating in the labor force. Her research has been published in a variety of academic journals and cited in publications such as the Economist and the New York Times.

In addition to her academic work, Aaronson has been active in efforts to improve diversity and inclusion at the Federal Reserve, as well as efforts to promote research on economic inclusion within the Federal Reserve System. Her background in the tools and systems necessary to drive institutional change will be invaluable to Brookings’s own priority of advancing diversity and inclusion throughout the Institution.

“After nearly two decades at the Federal Reserve Board, I’m looking forward to this next step and am thrilled to be joining Brookings—an Institution’s whose mission I have long admired. Now more than ever, I see the value in independent research and robust dialogue about how the economy works and how to make it work better for all Americans.”

Aaronson joined the Federal Reserve Board in 2000, and was appointed chief of what was then the Macroeconomic Analysis section in 2012. Between 2011 and 2012 she served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Macroeconomic Policy at the Department of Treasury, where she received an award for meritorious service. In 2010 she was a visiting scholar in the Department of Economics at Yale University. Aaronson has an AB degree in history from Columbia College and a Ph.D. in economics from Columbia University.

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One Young World Launches Lead2030 Initiative To Support UN’s Sustainable Development Goals


Press Release – 20 October, The Hague: One Young World – the global forum for young leaders that counts the Duchess of Sussex, Justin Trudeau and Emma Watson as Counsellors – today announces the launch of Lead2030, a new initiative to drive progress on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Supported by some of the world’s most prestigious organisations, Lead2030 will find, fund and accelerate the most impactful youth-led solutions to help deliver on the SDGs.

The 17 Sustainable Development Goals – or Global Goals – were agreed upon by 193 countries in 2015. From ending poverty to protecting the oceans, these goals represent an ambitious to-do list to create a sustainable future by 2030.

Yet with an estimated annual investment gap of $2.5 trillion in developing countries alone, achieving the Global Goals requires meaningful contribution from the private sector. United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres recently stated that “funding gaps for SDG investments are vast and urgent. We must unlock the large levels of financing necessary to implement the 2030 Agenda.”

Lead2030 will generate over $500,000 investment from the first-ever coalition of businesses working together to accelerate youth-led innovation for the SDGs.

Each Lead2030 Challenge Partner has committed to funding and mentoring each selected youth-led initiative, business or movement that is making a tangible impact on a selected Sustainable Development Goal.

The inaugural Lead 2030 Challenge Partners include:

  • Goals 2 & 6: RB. Zero Hunger & Clean Water & Sanitation
  • Goal 3: AstraZeneca. Good Health & Well-being
  • Goal 4: Deloitte. Quality Education
  • Goal 4: Credit Suisse. Quality Education
  • Goal 7: BP. Affordable & Clean Energy
  • Goal 9: Standard Chartered. Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure
  • Goal 10: Bristol-Myers Squibb. Reduced Inequalities
  • Goal 12: Mondi Group. Responsible Consumption & Production
  • Goal 17: KPMG. Partnerships For The Goals

The global search for young innovators has launched today with applications open here:

Kate Robertson, co-founder of One Young World, said:

“Since 2010, One Young World Ambassadors have positively impacted the lives of more than 17.5 million people. They are a testament to the progress young people can achieve when they have a platform to lead to from. Lead2030 will enable this community and young leaders like them to achieve even greater results.

“The Global Goals will not be achieved without ambitious and meaningful contributions from leaders across every sector of society. With 380 million jobs predicted to be created by achieving the SDGs, and $12 trillion unlocked in market opportunities, the business case for accelerating progress on the Global Goals is clear. The world leading organisations that have committed to join Lead2030 are not just doing the right thing, they’re doing the smart thing for their business.”

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Endura Flap Honors Furever Heroes Across The Country

California-Based Pet Company Launches Nationwide Campaign to Recognize Outstanding Animal Adopters

Press Release – San Luis Obispo, Calif. (Oct. 19, 2018)Endura Flap, a leading creator of high-quality pet doors, has announced a nationwide initiative to recognize the heroic efforts of animal adopters and champions. Launching in tandem with October’s national Adopt-a-Shelter-Dog month, the Furever Heroes campaign will recognize one exemplary pet adopter each month over the next year. Those who will be recognized may go beyond traditional norms in their efforts to give their pets a forever home.

In the campaign’s beginning months, Furever Heroes will select winners through partner shelters across the country. Each shelter will choose a hero based on an adopter’s outstanding efforts to provide their furry family members a better life. In later stages of the campaign, the public will be able to nominate individuals to become a Furever Hero via social media. One winner will be selected each month.

In addition to being recognized as a Furever Hero, individuals selected will receive an Endura Flap pet door, donated by the company. With each giveaway, Endura Flap will aim to improve the home of these heroes and give their pets the freedom to come and go as they please.

“Every animal deserves to enjoy a high quality of life,” said Nick Pullano, CEO of Endura Flap. “Those who adopt the newest additions to their families from shelters literally save the lives of loving animals who need a good home. Our Furever Heroes campaign recognizes animal adopters for their love and compassion by empowering them with a complimentary Endura Flap dog door to help improve the home and lives of both owners and their pets.”

Over the next year, the Furever Heroes will be recognized across the Endura Flap social media channels. To learn more about Furever Heroes, visit

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Performa Reveals Program to Honor Groundbreaking Artists Christo and Jeanne-Claude at Performa 2018 Gala on November 1 at New York City

Press Release – (October 17, 2018) New York, N.Y. – Performa announces the Performa 2018 Gala program for the annual fundraising event, honoring groundbreaking artists Christo and his late-wife Jeanne Claude, taking place on Thursday, November 1 at Stage 37 in New York City. Performa is the leading organization in commissioning visual artists and exploring the critical role of live performance in 21st century art. Organized by Gala Chair Roya Sachs with Producing Director Esa Nickle and help from Christo’s collaborators and family, the gala will be a thrilling, unexpected adventure, designed to showcase Performa’s exciting approach to performance by visual artists and to engaging audiences in the most visceral and direct ways in artists’ ideas. With never-before-seen video from the Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s archives tracing back 40 years, musical performances, sound experiences, and food inspired by the public art works of the artists, by Scott Skey of BITE, Performa will celebrate the extraordinary work of the indomitable and visionary artists. In addition, there will be a dessert experience orchestrated by Spanish multidisciplinary artist Antoni Miralda. The Artist Party, taking place just after the Gala, and will be hosted by artist Marilyn Minter and GHE20G0TH1K founder Venus X. It is held at 9pm, at the Broken Shaker, Freehand New York.

“Christo and Jeanne-Claude’s entire life’s work represents the untrammeled vision and absolute courage of the artist,” says RoseLee Goldberg, Founding Director and Chief Curator of Performa. “Their monumental projects are works of wonder, thrilling visual and physical feats. They are also declarations of absolute autonomy, each project independently financed and realized by the artists’ own production teams, with a determination and honor-code that sets a high bar for us all.”

As both internationally-acclaimed luminaries and hometown New York City heroes, Christo and Jeanne-Claude have long been admired as intrepid pioneers with boundless imagination. Their ethos of developing ambitious, autonomous and self-funded projects and bringing them to life embodies Performa’s vision and determination to bring artists and audiences together for unforgettable, you-have-to-be-there life experiences.

A dessert ceremony in honor of Christo and Jeanne-Claude will be orchestrated by Spanish multidisciplinary artist Antoni Miralda, renowned for art work inspired by gastronomy, ritual, and social practice. For the occasion, Miralda, a longtime friend of Christo, has designed a limited-edition artist plate in partnership with Prospect NY. The design is a nod to the iconic camouflage façade of “El Internacional,” Miralda’s now-legendary downtown restaurant that was a creative hub for New York artists in the 1980s. Located on West Broadway in Tribeca, the restaurant combined the social ritual of eating with installation and performance art, blurring the lines between food, art, design, performance, and mass media. Each guest of the gala will receive a plate from the first edition to take home at the end of the night. Limited editions will then be sold online at

According to Miralda, the dessert ceremony will be a tribute to his friend Christo and late-wife Jeanne-Claude as well as to the many thousands of people around the world who have helped to realize their projects. It will also touch upon the collaborative process and collective experience that characterizes both his work and that of Christo and Jeanne-Claude.

“Miralda is an unsung hero of 1980’s New York City and the undisputed father of food art,” says Performa Producer Esa Nickle. “Not only was he running an experimental restaurant serving quite possibly the first tapas in New York City as a two year-long performance, but at the same time he was creating monumental food parades, a wedding ceremony for the Statue of Liberty and public art experiences for all New Yorkers.”

The gala will culminate with a solo musical performance by Los Angeles based experimental violinist Sudan Archives who combines West and East African folk traditions with R&B, breakbeats, vocals and electronic sampling. With her expansive musical range and mesmerizing performance, Sudan Archives will pay special homage to the spirit and memory of Jeanne-Claude.

The Gala is co-chaired by David Hallberg, Rashid Johnson, Roya Sachs and Richard Chang;

the evening is co-hosted by Bloomberg Philanthropies, Toby Devan Lewis, Wendy Fisher and Cindy Sherman.


Performa’s exciting Artist Party, dedicated to the many artists who have participated in Performa Biennials past, will begin at 9 p.m. at the Broken Shaker, the lounge with rooftop views, at Freehand Hotel on 23rd Street and Lexington Avenue. Co-hosted by artist Marilyn Minter, GHE20G0TH1K founder Venus X and the Performa Visionaries, the evening is organized by Job Piston, Performa Special Projects Manager, in collaboration with the Performa Visionaries. Revelers from the gala uptown will join Performa’s young patrons and artist community to dance the night away with DJ LSDXOXO presented by GHE20G0TH1K, in support of Performa artists and programs. A pop-up shop to benefit Downtown for Democracy will include t-shirts for sale by Marlene McCarthy, Marilyn Minter, Rashid Johnson, Barbara Kruger and Richard Prince. Downtown for Democracy is a political action committee founded by creative people to transform cultural influence into political power. A special dessert will be served, Bastani, by the Performa Visionaries Steering Committee member, Pari Eshan, also known as Pari Dust, with Nicole Najafi. Tickets are $150 for the public, and $125 for Performa members.


Founded in 2004 by art historian and curator RoseLee Goldberg, Performa is the leading organization dedicated to exploring the critical role of live performance in the history of twentieth-century art and encouraging new directions in performance for the twenty-first century. Since launching New York’s first performance biennial, Performa 05, in 2005, the organization has solidified its identity as a commissioning and producing entity. As a “Museum Without Walls,” Performa provides important art historical heft to the field by showing the development of live art in all its forms from many different cultural perspectives reaching back to the Renaissance. The Performa Biennial is celebrated world-wide as the first biennial to give specialized attention to this remarkable history, transforming the city of New York into the ‘world capital of artists’ performance’ every other November. Performa attracts a national and international audience of more than 240,000 and receives more than 5,000,000 website hits during its three week run. In the last decade, Performa has presented nearly 600 performances, worked with more than 700 artists, and toured commissioned performances in nearly 20 countries around the world.

For more on Performa and its programs including the Performa Biennial, please visit Join the conversation: @PerformaNYC #Performa2018Gala #ChristoAndJeanneClaude

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Third Wave Fund Announces Groundbreaking Co-Directors

Co-Director Hires Break Glass Ceiling in Philanthropy for Transgender Women of Color and Young People

Press Release – New York – One of the first openly trans women to lead a philanthropic organization and one of the youngest leaders to lead a U.S. philanthropic institution have taken on the role of co-directors at the Third Wave Fund, a funder that supports youth-led, gender justice activism in communities of color and low-income communities.

Kiyomi Fujikawa and Ana Conner will take over the leadership reins from outgoing Executive Director Rye Young in November of this year. Young, who started at Third wave as an intern, steps down from leadership after 5 full years, and 10 years altogether at Third Wave.

“We are thrilled to have Ana Conner and Kiyomi Fujikawa join Third Wave Fund as our new Co-Directors,” said Deesha Narichania, Third Wave Fund board co-chair. “This is a time when our futures depend on whether philanthropy will answer the call to take risks, fund intersectionally, and be collaborative. Kiyomi and Ana’s partnership embodies these values and enshrines them at Third Wave.”

Kiyomi Fujikawa is a Seattle-based, mixed-race queer trans femme who has been involved with movements to end gender- and state-based violence since 2001. Her political home is with queer and trans communities of color and organizing to prevent and respond to intimate partner violence. Kiyomi is currently on the board of Groundswell Fund and is a Grantmakers United for Trans Communities (GUTC) Leadership Development Fellow. She was most recently a Senior Program Associate at the Fund for Trans Generations at Borealis Philanthropy, and the Queer Network Program Coordinator at API Chaya.

Ana Conner is a mixed, Black, queer, gender non-conforming young person living in Harlem, NY. They are committed to community building and resourcing movements, particularly those rooted in Black liberation, racial and gender justice, queer and trans liberation, and youth leadership development. Ana came to this work through organizing with FIERCE, where they brought together queer and trans youth of color across the US to talk about gentrification, policing, and how young people are building a movement to end violence waged against our communities. They became passionate about resourcing organizations and movements while on the fundraising staff at Astraea Foundation, and while participating in the Miss Major Jay Toole Giving Circle. Ana currently sits on the Roots to Freedom Giving Circle planning committee and the Fundraising Committee at the War Resisters League. Before Third Wave Fund, they were the Senior Program Associate for the Transforming Movements Fund and Black-Led Movement Fund at Borealis Philanthropy.

Since Third Wave’s founding in 1996, it has been led by and for young feminist activists and has invested over $4.9 million in the leadership of communities that philanthropy has historically left behind. “I am proud of what we have been able to accomplish together over the past five years, as the team and I worked to make space for young women, queer, and trans people of color in philanthropy and build a radical vision for what a foundation could be,” said outgoing Executive Director Rye Young. “I am beyond excited to watch Third Wave continue to grow and deepen under Kiyomi and Ana’s leadership.”

The new co-directors were revealed at last night’s annual Gender Bash, Third Wave’s annual fundraiser to benefit their Mobilize Power Fund. The Mobilize Power Fund makes monthly, rapid response grants for urgent direct action, community mobilizing, and healing justice work led by young women, queer, and transgender people of color. Recent Mobilize Power Fund grantees supported by funds raised at Gender Bash are: the Transwoman Empowerment Initiative, which recently staged a direct action to confront New Mexico’s legislators about anti-trans violence, discrimination, and unemployment in Albuquerque; the Black Sex Worker Collective who just led a day of action in New York against federal legislation that puts women in danger; and Semillas Healing Project, which created a community center in San Juan, Puerto Rico for healing justice after Hurricane Irma and María.

“Together, we can have the space to grow into our leadership at Third Wave Fund — and that’s what is beautiful about a co-director model. A co-directorship embodies collectivity, sustainability and opportunities for growth and co-learning, which are all things that we are committed to.” – Ana Conner & Kiyomi Fujikawa

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Discovery Education and the Drug Enforcement Administration Launch National Event that Connects Students with Real-World Stories of Loss, Triumph and Learning at the Frontlines of the Opioid Epidemic

— Students invited to participate in ‘Opioid Crisis: Real People. Real Stories. Real Science.’ Virtual Field Trip on October 25 —

— Part of Operation Prevention, the Nation’s Leading Prevention Education Program Available at No-Cost to Communities Nationwide —

Press Release – Silver Spring, Md. (Thursday, October 18, 2018) – The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Discovery Education are expanding Operation Prevention, the no-cost, standards-aligned, science-based initiative for parents, teachers and students, by introducing the 3rd in a series of dynamic Virtual Field Trips. As part of DEA’s Red Ribbon Week campaign, Opioid Crisis: Real People. Real Stories. Real Science. will broadcast on Thursday, October 25, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT, providing middle and high school students with information on how addiction starts through first-hand accounts from survivors of drug misuse. The immersive virtual event will also introduce students to the science behind addiction and underscore the impact of the opioid epidemic in communities that have been hardest hit.

“Drug addiction, just like any addiction, isn’t limited to one group of people or community,” said Sean Fearns, chief of community outreach, DEA. “‘Opioid Crisis: Real People. Real Stories. Real Science.’ is an extension of our efforts to combat the opioid epidemic one person at a time. We believe one of the best ways to fight addiction before it starts is to empower families and teachers to openly communicate with their children and students about the opioid crisis.”

During Opioid Crisis: Real People. Real Stories. Real Science., students nationwide will be transported from their classrooms to see the real faces of addiction and hear personal stories behind initial experimentation and movement from trial, to usage, to addiction. This virtual experience aims to connect students with real people who have been affected by the opioid epidemic in order to inspire a deeper understanding of the dangers of experimentation and the benefits of drug-free living.

The Virtual Field Trip will allow viewers to meet two retired professional football players who understand the pressures of playing football through pain and now focus their efforts on discussing alternative pain management options with young athletes. Students will also be introduced to a young musician who played at Carnegie Hall as a teenager before becoming addicted, whose efforts now support musicians in recovery. Finally, students will hear from a family that has been plagued for three generations by opioid addiction. Their collective stories of challenge, triumph and learning will underscore the far-reaching impact of the opioid crisis. No matter how addiction begins, recovery from addiction is a struggle.

“Discovery Education is proud to expand the reach of ‘Operation Prevention’ with this dynamic Virtual Field Trip in order to further address a growing epidemic that is impacting every classroom, every community and every corner of the country,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Discovery Education. “By focusing on prevention education with a science-based approach – anchored in the youth voice – ‘Operation Prevention’ gives students opportunities to share their stories, engage with their peers and to play a visible role in stemming the tide of young people who fall victim to the pipeline of addiction.”

Operation Prevention equips teachers, parents, students and communities with digital tools to initiate life-saving conversations about the opioid epidemic. The program’s immersive resources – focused on the science of addiction – include standards-aligned digital lessons, a self-paced e-learning module, a Virtual Field Trip series for classrooms, and a nationwide peer-to-peer video challenge that encourages teens to educate their peers about how drug use affects the brain and body. Since launching during the fall of 2016, Operation Prevention’s immersive English and Spanish-language tools have reached more than three million students ages 8 to 18. Additionally, an Operation Prevention public service announcement (PSA) aired on Discovery Communications networks has reached more than eight million homes to date. Operation Prevention efforts have expanded through the Operation Prevention Pledge – which brings together educators, advocacy organizations, businesses, think-tanks, and social impact groups – to encourage millions more young people to learn about the science behind addiction. The pledge also encourages the nation’s youth to live drug-free lives.

“Every day, another family is forced to deal with the overwhelming reality of an opioid addiction. Working together, we can truly make a difference in the rapidly growing epidemic that is affecting our youth in unprecedented numbers around the country,” said Cheryl Lykowski, Elementary School Teacher, Monroe Road Elementary, Bedford Public Schools. “‘Operation Prevention’s’ digital tools, PSA, and deeply engaging Virtual Field Trips are purposeful in equipping communities with the right information to tackle this problem and begin lifesaving conversations.”

Operation Prevention materials are available at and also through Discovery Education Streaming Plus, where users can access the full range of student and teacher facing resources, in addition to an on-demand archive of the Virtual Field Trips and youth-created PSAs. To learn more about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit Stay connected with Discovery Education on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest @DiscoveryEd.

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Young Impact Leaders Receive Nudge Global Impact Awards In Peace Palace, The Hague

Nudge founder Jan van Betten: “Focusing even more on impact, we aim to change the lives of 1 billion people.”

Press Release – Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 18 October 2018 – On Tuesday evening at the Nudge Summit, the Selected Awardees of the Nudge Global Impact Award 2018 were announced. Anacelle Bautista (PeoplePods, the Philippines), Marta Mazza (Gruppo Mondadori, Italy), and Karen Lopez (HEINEKEN Mexico) received this global recognition for their achievements in creating the most impact on people’s lives and our planet. Jaap Smit, Commissioner of the King in South-Holland, handed out the Awards. The Selected Awardees are alumni of the Nudge Global Impact Challenge, a yearly development programme about leadership, sustainability and impact. The Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, strategic partner of the Challenge, was responsible for measuring and monitoring the impact created by the Award nominees. At the Summit, a jury consisting of Teresa Fogelberg (Global Reporting Initiative), Philipp Pattberg (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Fred Matser (Fred Foundation), Alexander Nick (BMW Group) and Jan Alberdingk Thijm (Nutreco) chose the three Awardees from six finalists. Each Awardee received €2.000,– to be used on a cause of public benefit connected to their impact project.

Nudge founder Jan van Betten: “The Nudge Global Impact Award is a great boost and recognition for our participants to realise their plans and create the impact they envision. With our Nudge projects, we aim to change the lives of a billion people, together with our partners, supporters, and of course the young women and men who are future leaders in sustainability. The Nudge Global Impact Challenge will help them make the change for a better world.”

This year’s Nudge Global Impact Challenge brought forward three ‘Nudge Impact Creators’ who won an encouragement prize. They are Giulia Zana (Ferrero, Luxembourg), Prithi Sharma (HEINEKEN, Malaysia) and Hamed Beheshti (wild card candidate, Germany). All 90 participants from 25 global organisations such as HEINEKEN, Danone, Ferrero, BMW Group, Rabobank, Nutreco, Philips and ABN AMRO were challenged to provide a tangible plan that generates sustainable impact. The three Nudge Impact Creators will spend two weeks in Amsterdam learning all about ‘Governing Climate Change’ at the VU Amsterdam Summer School to bring their sustainability knowledge and personal development even further.

Nudge Global Impact Award Selected Awardees 2018

Call to action

Nudge believes that the key to a sustainable future lies with young leadership and therefore calls on companies in all countries to join the Nudge Global Impact Challenge and support the participation of young professionals. The Support Partners contribute to bringing together the best young professionals from all over the world and giving them the knowledge, tools and confidence to implement positive and innovative change. Joining the Nudge Global Impact Challenge can be arranged by contacting Nudge.

About Nudge

Founded in 2010, Nudge strives towards a sustainable society. Nudge is a social enterprise and B Corp based in The Netherlands. Nudge connects people and organisations with its online platform in order to achieve grassroots initiatives that bring a positive and long-lasting change in our society. By facilitating bottom-up initiatives, Nudge offers perspectives for action that are accessible to everyone. Nudge invites everyone to take action and make a positive contribution to society. Over 65,500 people and approximately 200 organisations in the Netherlands are members of the Nudge community and this number is increasing daily.

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Make-A-Wish® America Announces New CEO, Richard K. Davis

Former U.S. Bancorp Executive Chairman will take over as CEO

effective January 2, 2019

Press Release – PHOENIX – OCTOBER 17, 2018 – Make-A-Wish America today announced that the Board of Directors has selected Richard K. Davis as Chief Executive Officer, effective January 2, 2019.

Davis is an accomplished leader with more than 40 years of diverse experience. He most recently served as executive chairman of U.S. Bancorp, where he had previously been the president and CEO. Davis also sits on the boards of the National American Red Cross, Mayo Clinic, as well as many other well-known companies and nonprofit organizations.

“Richard is very much dedicated to the Make-A-Wish mission of creating life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses and we are excited to see him leading the organization forward,” said David Clark, chairman of the Make-A-Wish Board of Directors. “He brings decades of experience leading large teams and organizations and we feel he is exactly the right person to lead us into the next chapter.”

Davis has also served on many not-for-profit boards for more than 30 years, including Goodwill, United Way, YMCA, the University of Minnesota Foundation and the University of San Diego. Additionally, he has served in leadership positions on the boards of the Minnesota Orchestra, the Guthrie Theater and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. He was awarded the Presidential Lifetime Volunteer Service award in 2007.

“I have always been inspired by the remarkable work of Make-A-Wish and the organization’s ability to fulfill wishes for children undergoing treatment for critical illnesses. I am very grateful for this opportunity to lead Make-A-Wish and to join the remarkable staff and countless volunteers who participate in granting a wish every 34 minutes of each day,” stated Davis.

As previously announced this spring, David Williams, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish America, will depart the organization after a successful 14-year career helping drive the organization’s overall strategy and vision. He will depart October 31, 2018.

About Make-A-Wish America

Make-A-Wish® America creates life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses. We seek to bring every eligible child’s wish to life because a wish is an integral part of a child’s treatment journey. Research shows children who have wishes granted can build the physical and emotional strength they need to fight their illness. Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Make-A-Wish is the leading children’s wish-granting organization, serving children in every community in the United States. Together, generous donors, supporters, staff and more than 35,000 volunteers across the U.S., grant a wish every 34 minutes, on average, somewhere in the country. Since 1980, Make-A-Wish has granted more than 300,000 wishes to children in the U.S. and its territories; more than 15,400 in 2017 alone. For more information about Make-A-Wish America, visit

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Seventh Grader Aims To Improve Treatment For Pancreatic Cancer Using Artificial Intelligence

— Rishab Jain Named America’s Top Young Scientist for his Pancreatic Cancer Deep Learning System Invention in the 2018 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge —

Press Release – Silver Spring, Md. and St. Paul, Minn. (Wednesday, October 17, 2018) – Discovery Education (@DiscoveryEd) and 3M (@3M) have named 13-year-old Rishab Jain the winner of the 2018 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge (#YoungScientist). Rishab created an algorithm to make pancreatic cancer treatment more effective by using artificial intelligence to accurately locate and track the pancreas in real-time during MRI radiotherapy.

Pancreatic cancer is the third-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States, according to An inherent challenge of radiation treatment for pancreatic cancer resides in targeting the pancreas itself. Firstly, it is often obscured by the stomach or other nearby organs, making the pancreas difficult to locate and second, breathing and other anatomical changes may cause the pancreas to move around in the abdominal area. As a result, radiotherapy treatment can inadvertently target and impact healthy cells.

Rishab developed and tested his algorithm using images of the human digestive system, and found it could correctly detect the pancreas with a 98.9 percent success rate. The innovation aims to improve accuracy, reduce invasiveness and increase efficiency during treatment, resulting in better quality of life and chance for survival among patients.

A seventh-grader at Stoller Middle School in Portland, Ore., Rishab competed alongside nine other finalists during a live competition at the 3M Innovation Center in St. Paul, Minn. He was awarded the title of “America’s Top Young Scientist” and received a $25,000 prize.

During the summer, the finalists had the exclusive opportunity to work with 3M scientists to develop their innovations as part of a unique mentorship program. Rishab was paired with Dr. Döne Demirgöz, a 3M corporate supply chain black belt and product development and research expert who takes the products developed in 3M labs and brings them to the marketplace.

The finalists presented their inventions to an esteemed panel of scientists and leaders from both Discovery Education and 3M. In addition, they competed in two other challenges that combined multiple 3M technologies to solve a real-world problem.

“All of the finalists for America’s Top Young Scientist embody the same curiosity, creativity, and passion that 3M uses when we apply science to life,” said Paul Keel, senior vice president, business development and marketing-sales, 3M. “These talented young men and women are just beginning their lives as scientists. I am excited by the endless possibilities that await each of them. We wish them all the joy and success that comes from a lifelong journey of exploration.”

The nine finalists received $1,000 and a variety of prizes from Discovery Education and 3M. The second, third and fourth runners-up also received a trip to a taping of a show on Discovery’s family of networks.

These finalists include:

In second place: Mehaa Amirthalingam, an eighth-grader at Sartaria Middle School from Sugar Land, Texas, developed a toilet flushing system that uses both fresh and recycled water to reduce water consumption in the home.

In third place: Leo Wylonis, an eighth-grader at Tredyffrin-Easttown Middle School in Berwyn, Pa., designed a device for airplane wings that mimics the twisting motion of a bird in flight, increases fuel efficiency and reduces carbon emissions.

In fourth place: Sriram Bhimaraju, a sixth-grader at Harker Middle School in Cupertino, Calif., developed an Archery Assistant app that improves an archer’s accuracy by correcting form in real-time using a Bluetooth sensor.

The fifth through tenth place winners each received a $1,000 prize and a $500 excitations gift card. These finalists, in alphabetical order by last name, are:

Anna Du, a sixth-grader from Andover School of Montessori in Andover, Mass. Anna created an underwater device that uses infrared light to detect harmful microplastics in the ocean.

Julia Gelfond, a seventh-grader at Silver Creek Middle School in Chevy Chase, Md. Julia invented an innovative use for dissolvable gel that can fill a tooth hole after it has been extracted to alleviate pain, infection and suffering.

Zachary Hessler, a seventh-grader at Gifford Middle School in Vero Beach, Fla. Zachery developed a method using light technology to reduce noise pollution.

Theodore Jiang, an eighth-grader at Paul Revere Charter Middle School in Santa Monica, Calif. Theodore invented Textricity, a smartphone case that harvests energy from finger taps on the screen to charge the phone’s battery.

Cameron Sharma, an eighth-grader at George H Moody Middle School in Glen Allen, Va. Cameron created uFlu, an algorithm that uses artificial intelligence and machine learning to identify personalized flu vaccines.

Krish Wadhwani, an eighth grader at DeSana Middle School in Alpharetta, Ga. Krish developed a medication that could potentially cure Huntington’s Disease, a degenerative condition in the brain that currently has no known cure.

“Inspiring millions of students over the past decade to develop new innovations and solutions that solve real-world problems, the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge has encouraged kids to gain valuable critical-thinking and solution-seeking skills for life,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice-president and chief marketing officer, Discovery Education. “Congratulations on our newest Top Young Scientist Rishab and all 2018 YSC finalists on their incredible efforts. Discovery Education is honored to be a part of a partnership that not only encourages, but provides the tools necessary for the next generation of young innovators to be successful in their pursuit of learning how to make the world a better place.”

Since its inception, the Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge has awarded hundreds of thousands of dollars in student prizes, paired students with world-renowned scientists to give them real-world insights and delivered much-needed science resources to millions of students, teachers and families across the country. It targets students in the years when research indicates their interest in science begins to wane and encourages them to explore scientific concepts and creatively communicate their findings. Winners have gone on to be featured in Forbes magazine’s annual “30 Under 30” list, speak in front of members of Congress and attendees at the United Nations, meet the President of the United States, and demonstrate inventions on national television programs such as ABC World News Tonight, Fox & Friends, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

The annual premier competition recognizes scientific thinking and imagination in students grades 5-8 who dream up a solution to an everyday problem that ultimately could reshape and improve the way we live our lives. To download hi-res images of the science competition, click here. For more information on the 2018 Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge and to learn more about this year’s finalists, go to

Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge materials are also available through Discovery Education Streaming Plus. For more information about Discovery Education’s digital content and professional development services, visit Stay connected with Discovery Education through social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest @DiscoveryEd.

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Original Comic Art Charity Auction Benefits The Ed Asner Family Center

Heritage Auctions partners with Ed Asner Center to support mental health and enrichment programs

Press Release – DALLAS, Texas (Oct. 16, 2018) – Known for his Emmy-winning roles playing curmudgeons, ranging from Lou Grant on The Mary Tyler Moore Show to Carl in the Pixar film UP, actor Ed Asner’s true character is that of a philanthropist and loving father who shared his passion for comic books with his children. Earlier this year, the legendary actor and founders Matt and Navah Asner opened The Ed Asner Family Center, to offer a host of programs, classes and therapy dedicated to promoting self-confidence in differently abled individuals. They plan to open in their new location in November.

Tomorrow, Heritage Auctions is hosting The Ed Asner Family Center Original Comic Art Charity Auction at Today’s leading comic book artists, including Kevin Nowlan, Alex Ross, Jim Lee and more, have donated high-profile work for the online auction.

“The Asner family have always been comic book fans,” said Matt Asner, Ed Asner’s son and President of The Ed Asner Family Center. “We thought, ‘What can we do to raise the eyebrows of people and highlight creativity?’ We are incredibly excited about doing an original art sale. The Ed Asner Center represents unleashing creativity, and what better way of illustrating this than the world of comics?”

Matt Asner said the core values and programming of the Center are based around creation of an environment that shows the limitless potential of children with different levels of ability, including autism, Down syndrome and developmental delays. “The arts are so important for instilling self confidence in people,” he said.

Matt Asner still remembers his father taking him to newsstands and bookstores while his father was a star on The Mary Tyler Moore Show. “I still remember the first comic book my father ever bought me,” Matt Asner said. “It was an Avengers reprint from 1970. He sees the great, creative atmosphere around comics. He gets it. He saw the creativity, the art and writing involved, and appreciated it.

“We are honored to have 70 pieces of original art from some of the brightest stars in comics in this special auction that we feel could only be done through Heritage,” Asner adds.

Artists who donated both individual work and collaborations, including Alex Ross, Adam Kubert, Tom Derenick, Danny Miki, Scott Hanna and Lary Stucker, Brent Anderson, Adam Hughes, Colleen Doran, Barry Crain, Dan Jurgens, Karine Charlebois, Cully Hamner, Eric Powell, Geof Darrow; Jerry Ordway, Jim Lee and Kevin Nowlan.

“We are very thankful for the contributions of these artists and the time and friendship of Kevin Nowlan,” Matt Asner said. “Kevin was Superman, Batman and Doctor Strange on this project. We also wish to thank Albert Moy, Spencer Beck, Animazing Gallery and Kurt Busiek for their contributions, as well.”

Select highlights include, Nowlan’s original cover art to Doctor Strange #19 (Marvel, 2017), the original cover art by Lee from Scooby Apocalypse #3 (DC, 2016) and variant cover original art by Cassaday for Captain America: Reborn #6 (Marvel, 2003), published in the popular six-issue series.

The Ed Asner Family Center Original Comic Art Charity Auction is online at The Center also offers donors several giving levels and even explains how contributions support various programming. Donations may be made at

Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house founded in the United States, and the world’s largest collectibles auctioneer. Heritage maintains offices in New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Geneva, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.

The Internet’s most popular auction-house website,, has over one million registered bidder-members and searchable free archives of four million past auction records with prices realized, descriptions and enlargeable photos. Reproduction rights routinely granted to media for photo credit.

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