When I received the President Clinton Hunger Leadership Award, I recalled a favorite quote, “The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.” For me, everything started after I was a part of the team that led the world’s largest food drive. We were crazy to think we could break the “Guinness World Record for the Largest Food Drive in 24 Hours at a Single Location,” but we did. We raised over 550,000 pounds of food and while optimism prevailed, hunger persisted.
Going into North Carolina State University to study business and entrepreneurship, I wanted to build a more sustainable and significant way to solve major social challenges. The President Clinton Hunger Leadership Award was my first opportunity to articulate my vision for how I would live out this calling.
Ending hunger requires each of us to be crazy enough to think we can. Since receiving the award, my vision is to leverage three-types of capital to drive social progress: financial, human and intellectual capital. In order to help guide other young leaders, I’ve decided to give a concise picture of what is possible to those who are crazy enough to think they can change the world. This is my path and if any of these organizations or activities interests you, please reach out to me because I’m happy to help.
Regarding the public sector, I’ve worked on Capitol Hill with RESULTS to advocate for federal funding for USAID’s micro-finance initiatives, collectively advocating for over half a billion dollars in sustainable aid. Alongside other student leaders, I helped launch the Why Care Campaign on the World Food Program’s World Food Day.
Internationally, I’ve spent two weeks in Honduras working with local universities and farmers on sustainable agriculture projects, micro-finance institutions, and a controversial development project called the Patuca III hydroelectric dam. In partnership with Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy and the NC State’s Caldwell Fellowship, I spearheaded an impact measurement and evaluation consulting project on a small food security non-profit working in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Regarding social entrepreneurship, I’m the co-founder and CEO of Pennies 4 Progress, a company built to leverage point of sale donations to allow people to donate a single penny when making a purchase. We have worked with the Clinton Global Initiative University, United Way, and local businesses to raise a $50,000 seed round to launch sustainable funding partnerships in North Carolina for collective impact. Recently, I was selected as one of three student Kirchner Food Fellows to manage an early-stage impact investment fund focused on identifying and growing promising interventions to combat global food security. Building high-growth sustainable enterprise is where my passion lies and the Clinton Award gave me the resources and support to pursue this passion.
Let your crazy shine. Allow us to support your dreams of a changed world by applying for the Stop Hunger Now Clinton Hunger Leadership Award.