Supporting efforts to advance inclusion and equity
// By Christian Clansky
Some events are so stunning that they compel us to action. Such was the impact of the 2016 elections on the philanthropic community – and The Roddenberry Foundation, in particular. In response, the foundation launched the Roddenberry Fellowship, a $1 million investment in activists, community organizers, and disrupters who are leading efforts for a more just and equitable country. The 12-month program supports Fellows in amplifying the impact of an initiative they’ve already started, or in launching a brand-new initiative.
What have the Fellows learned during their resistance- and initiative-building journey? Hear first-hand from 2019 cohort members and foundation chief operating officer Meg Busse during the Upswell workshop, A Year of Resistance: What We’ve Learned, and What’s Next (learn more about Meg here).
“At the Foundation, we aim to be responsive in creating programs and funding models that address urgent issues, nationally and globally,” Meg said. “For the Fellowship, the incredibly high application numbers each year suggest that supporting activists across the US is still a pressing need. For this panel, several Fellows will share what they’ve learned in starting new ventures that aim to solve entrenched problems in innovative ways. This should be useful to other activists and social change agents to learn what worked, what didn’t, and what they see as the next opportunities.”
Meg says workshop participants will enjoy the Fellows’ insights on their activism and entrepreneurial efforts, although through different lenses. “From Kimberly’s work creating #BlackWomenLead Salon conversations, to Jonathan’s leadership in the House and Ball community with Keeping Ballroom Community Alive Network (KBCAN), to Malik’s innovation at the intersection of real estate, climate change, and community mobilization, to Maria’s creation of IssueVoter, which aggregates data on legislation, politicians, and elections in one place – it’s sure to be a lively conversation!”
“Changemakers can look forward to learning from these Fellows, and I’m thrilled to share a stage with them. We’re so grateful at the Foundation to get to work with such amazing, impactful folks.”
A Year of Resistance, What We’ve Learned, and What’s Next takes place on November 14 from 2:30-3:45