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 The 2018 Social Impact Award Candidates

Mark Ryle

Project Open Hand

“In 1985, Ruth Brinker delivered homemade meals to 7 of her malnourished neighbors living with HIV/AIDS; her food was medicine critical to her friend’s survival. Those first 7 meals would act as an enduring model for Project Open Hand. Over the years, we have expanded our services to reach those most in need.

Today, with staggering healthcare costs and poor diet associated with many of the leading causes of death, we ask ourselves how we can best apply our evidence-based protocols to those hard to reach populations where utilization rates are the highest and systems most taxed. This scholarship will bring a global perspective to our strategic plan that we have not had previously. The acquisition of knowledge, skills around critical thinking, and education on the theory of change in today’s economy will be invaluable to our organization’s sustainability, growth and prosperity. Each tiny, incremental improvement means more critically ill individuals gain access to our powerful nutritious model of care.”

Project Open Hand

Karin Kelley

Teen Success, Inc.

“Receiving a social impact scholarship to attend the HBS Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management would greatly benefit my organization. Without the scholarship I would not be able to attend the program due to budget limitations. Building leadership capacity is a priority for the organization but it is challenging to dedicate significant resources to this given our budget size and other pressing organizational needs. The scholarship will allow me to take full advantage of the HBS SPNM program, further develop my leadership skills, and bring this learning back to my organization at an opportune time.

Teen Success, lnc. is in the middle of business planning with a focus on growth, and expanding my skill set in strategic thinking and planning will greatly benefit the organization in this time of change. Ensuring that our growth is strategic, driven by best practices in the nonprofit sector and sustainable will be of tremendous benefit.”

Teen Success, Inc.

Laura Deaton

Trust for Conservation Innovation

“Although our organizational budget is $18M in revenue, almost $16.5 M of those funds come to us restricted for specific conservation and sustainability projects and programs. Our core leadership team is a lean team of 9 staff, and we have very few resources for professional development, instead investing in resources that directly benefit the projects that are working on the ground to drive change. We do not currently have a professional development line built into our leadership budget, and having the support of HBS Social Impact Scholarship would provide funds to support my participation that we would not otherwise have available for this training.

We are at a significant inflection point in our organization’s growth, where having the Executive director participate in concentrated study focused on leading change, ensuring sustainability, and driving growth as well as developing strategic alliances with other organizations will help ensure our successful program development and the continued growth of our board and staff teams as well.”

Trust for Conservation Innovation

Jorge Lopez

Amethod Schools

“I entered this work as an idealist educator who saw the need of serving poor, inner city students of color and thought that if I could establish a successful school model, the rest would fall into place. I failed to see that the critical need to approach many facets of the work from a business management perspective that included financial expertise, talent, and program management is just as essential, if not more, as instructional program management. What I hope to gain from the HBS program is leadership practice that is immersed in real-world challenges that will allow me to seek deeper understandings of situational leadership models. For many of us in the educational world whom may not be able to afford or attend full course MBA programs, this model will serve as that technical bridge.

Furthermore, also being a part of a cohort of fellow nonprofit leaders and HBS professors would provide a tight diverse community of colleagues that reflect partner organizations seeking to learn how to provide a better ‘good’ with out of the box thinking.”


Amethod Schools

Geoffrey Morgan

First Community Housing

“First Community Housing (FCH) is experiencing a time of great opportunity and transformation as one of San Jose’s few locally-based nonprofit affordable housing providers. Our small, 15 person organization has a disproportionate impact, serving over 3,400 residents in over 20 communities in and around Silicon Valley, with over 150 million dollars of construction value in new communities either under construction or about to be under construction in 2018. We have substantially increased our lines of credit and staffing to accommodate this needed growth in production, driven both by the community need and the rising costs to operate a nonprofit with professionals capable of executing these highly complex developments.

My hope is that this program will help our nonprofit in its evolution to help solve the housing crisis in Northern California while upholding our standards for healthy, sustainable communities we have become known for in this region.”

First Community Housing

Eliza Pesuit

Global Glimpse

“A social impact scholarship will allow me to invest in developing core business and leadership skills, raise the profile of Global Glimpse on a national scale, expand our network of advocates and supporters, and allow me to develop relationships with peers and mentors who will guide our next stage of growth and impact. We are laser focused on solving critical strategic growth challenges over the next two years and this course will provide me with the space to zero in on opportunities, evaluate ROI on pilot initiatives, and refine our growth strategy. I have never had the opportunity to participate in a course like this and though our board is committed to investing in my growth, to date we have not allocated resources to an executive course. Instead we have opted for one on one coaching, which I have actively pursued through pro-bono avenues. Coaching is invaluable, however I believe Global Glimpse will benefit from a more multi-faceted program and network at this time.

My world and Global Glimpse move at the speed of light, and this scholarship will provide the gifts of time, focus, and perspective, all critical ingredients to successful leadership.”

Global Glimpse

Nicholas Carlisle

No Bully

“No Bully is at a crucial point in its growth from start up to established organization. We have achieved proof of concept – the No Bully System® solves 90% of bullying – and we are ready to scale nationally and internationally. At the end of last year we adopted an ambitious three-year strategic plan (our “2020 strategy”) that will double us in size this year and next and allow us to help many more students nationwide.

Rapid scaling is not easy – many non-profits overreach at this point as they lack operational excellence. Success requires a leader that has invested in his professional development and has the skills to manage an A team in tracking impact, reach and revenue; in delivering to schools (our customers) a service that they truly need and value; in creating successful collaborations; in implementing and adjusting our 2020 strategy. This scholarship is an investment in No Bully’s ability to do this so that it can deliver on its mission of eradicating bullying and cyberbullying.”

No Bully

Jess Ladd

Project Callisto

“Callisto is at a critical inflection point – in the wake of #MeToo, we’re expanding our college sexual assault reporting system to address sexual assault and coercion in professional settings. This expansion comes with many strategic challenges – how to scale a team rapidly and well, how to hybridize a technology offering with a legal services offering, which markets to expand to and when, and who the potential customers vs corporate sponsors vs donors are in different professional sectors. We’re first expanding to address the sexual assault and coercion of founders by investors. From there, we plan to grow to the larger tech ecosystem through partnerships with incubators/accelerators, conferences, co-working spaces, investors, and employers. We also will explore partnerships with HR software/services, allowing us to reach multiple employers quickly.

In short, there is a lot to figure out. As CEO, it is critical that I have a framework to inform these many strategic decisions, and SPNM seems the ideal place to learn that framework and meet colleagues who will support this organization on our journey. Without this scholarship, my organization cannot afford to send me to this training.”


Calling all Harvard Business School alumni in Northern California to vote! The Harvard Business School Association of Northern California (HBSANC) through its Community Partners program is sponsoring four promising nonprofit CEO/Executive Directors to attend the Executive Education course Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management (SPNM) on a fully paid scholarship. This signature summer intensive course on the HBS campus will provide outstanding non-profit leaders with direct access to HBS professors, HBS cases, and a network of global social changemakers.

After attending this energizing session, the recipients may obtain pro bono consulting and advisory support from Bay Area alumni through the HBSANC Community Partners program,  recognition in Community Partners marketing communications, and invitations to engagements at HBS alumni events.

Support your local community by voting for your favorite Bay Area nonprofit leaders to obtain the HBS tools and skills to lead transformative change in their organizations. The four candidates with the most votes will win. Voting closes on 3/21/18!

Click “Vote” below to cast your vote!


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 Donate to the Social Impact Scholarship Fund

Beyond voting, you can also make a difference by donating to the Social Impact Scholarship fund. Your donation may be tax deductible (please check with your financial advisor.) HBSA/NC’s tax identification number is: 23-7184723.