Barbara Van Dahlen
Suzanne McKechnie Klahr
Barbara Elliott and Sandy Schultz
Reverend John P. Foley, S.J.
Dave and Liane Phillips
Robert L. Woodson Sr.
Zack Rosenburg and Liz McCartney
Toni Vaughn Heineman, D.M.H.
Rabbi Levi and Bassie Shemtov
Mary Lou Kownacki, OSB
Richard C. Liebich
Paige T. Ellison
Joan C. Mazzotti
Reverend Mack McCarter
Amy Lemley and Deanne Pearn
Michael Tenbusch and Daniel Varner
Dr. William S. Barnes
James G. Hunter
John and Catherine Dixon
Eric Adler and Rajiv Vinnakota
The Richard Cornuelle Award for Social Entrepreneurship
Each year since 2001, the Institute, in conjunction with a committee of distinguished scholars, practitioners, and foundation leaders, selects up to five individuals who
have originated and effectively implemented a new nonprofit organization providing direct services to those in need. Nominations for the $25,000 awards are solicited not from the organizations
or individuals themselves but from donors-who have already demonstrated their own belief in the organizations they nominate. In keeping with the social entrepreneurship program's emphasis on the
vitality of American civil society, the award is directed toward those with original ideas brought to fruition with predominantly private support, rather than in response to government grant programs.
From 2001-10, the awards were known simply as the Social Entrepreneurship Awards. In 2011, in recognition of the singular role played by Richard C. Cornuelle in conceiving and
supporting the program, the awards were renamed in his honor. In the years since their establishment, the awards have recognized individuals who have founded organizations
effectively providing services addressing key social challenges: increasing opportunity for higher education for the disadvantaged; improving access to health care for those of low-income;
helping the elderly "age in place", not in institutions; providing vocational education for urban high school graduates lacking job skills; job placement and mentoring for newly-released prisoners.
C-CAP (Careers Through Culinary Arts
New York, NY
C-CAP exposes high school students to the prospect of a satisfying,
well-paying career in the restaurant and hospitality industry through
home economics classes in high schools and with C-CAP-run summer
and after-school programs.
Beacon Hill Village
The Beacon Hill Village helps elderly individuals remain at home
and continue physically, socially, and intellectually active lives.
L. Woodson Sr.
Center for Neighborhood Enterprise
The Center for Neighborhood Enterprise targets the plague of violence
taking the lives of so many, and the disruption which undermines
education in too many urban schools.
Rosenburg and Liz McCartney
St. Bernard Project
New Orleans, LA
The St. Bernard Project has rebuilt more than 135 individual homes
(with 30 more in process), enlisting thousands of volunteers, in
the wake of Hurricane Katrina.
GEMS (Girls Educational and Mentoring
New York, NY
Rachel Lloyd, the founder and director of New York City- based
Girls Educational and Mentoring Service (GEMS) has made it her life
work to rescue girls as young as 11 from the world of prostitution.
Vaughn Heineman, D.M.H.
A Home Within, Inc.
San Francisco, CA
Dr. Heineman established A Home Within to provide volunteer, high-quality
psychological counseling to current and former foster children.
Primarily in the San Francisco Bay area, she also has established
an infrastructure for national growth.
Bonnie CLAC, (Credit Loans and Counseling)
Owning a car is often crucial to holding down a job. Robert Chambers
started Bonnie CLAC to help lower income residents of New Hampshire
buy new basic, reliable cars so that monthly loan charges would
be reasonable, maintenance costs modest, and fuel costs economical.
Levi and Bassie Shemtov
West Bloomfield, MI
Levi and Bassie Shemtov raised $5 million in private funding to
help the Friendship Circle design and build a facility for the developmentally
disabled to practice the life skills they’ll need to become independent
Reclaim A Youth
Reclaim A Youth provides recreation for local kids and prepares
local high school graduates for the difficult realities of college
life through a college scholarship and orientation program for promising
students in Chicago’s predominantly African-American south suburbs.
Prison Entrepreneurship Program
Catherine Rohr designed the Prison Entrepreneurship Program (PEP)
to channel the business skills many criminals possess toward legal
activities. Nationally, almost two-thirds of ex-offenders wind up
back in prison. The comparable figure for PEP graduates is five
Lou Kownacki, OSB
Inner City Neighborhood Art House
In an abandoned garage in downtown Erie, Sister Mary Lou Kownacki
and her skilled and accomplished faculty have brought literature,
music, dance, and art to over 3,000 children since 1994.
Project K.I.D.—Responding to Kids in
Paige Ellison cobbled together the first Project K.I.D. PlayCare
site six days after Hurricane Katrina left kids with no safe place
to go. In four months, with determination and 220 volunteers, she
had opened 12 such sites, serving 5,600 children.
Project Lead the Way
Clifton Park, NY
Richard Liebich established Project Lead the Way in 1997 to help
schools give students the knowledge necessary to excel in hightech
fields. Today, 200,000 students in 1,700 middle and high schools
participate in PLTW programs.
San Francisco, CA
Aaron Hurst founded the Taproot Foundation in San Francisco to
deliver infrastructure-building support to qualified nonprofit organizations.
Since 2001, teams of Taproot volunteers have supported and strengthened
over 500 nonprofit groups.
Volunteers in Medicine Institute
Started by a lone physician in 1994, Volunteers in Medicine Institute
has helped start 50 volunteer-based free primary-care clinics for
the uninsured in 24 states. And Amy Hamlin has plans for hundreds
Mexican Institute of Greater Houston,
Jose-Pablo Fernandez began a computer literacy program for barely
literate rural Mexican immigrants. Today graduates qualify for office
jobs, start their own small web-based businesses, and help their
children with homework.
RISE (Resources for Indispensable Schools
San Francisco, CA
Teach for America graduate Temp Keller founded this web-based system
to recruit young, effective teachers trapped in failing schools
and match them with good, mostly charter, “emerging” schools.
Philadelphia Futures for Youth
Joan Mazzotti took over and radically transformed Philadelphia
Futures, which prepares inner-city ninth-graders for four-year colleges,
providing financial and mentoring support all the way through to
Shreveport-Bossier Community Renewal
“Mack” McCarter revived the settlement house movement in poor neighborhoods
of Shreveport. His seven Friendship Houses are a staging ground
for tutoring, music lessons, preventive medical care, and neighborly
Bridges To Life
John Sage started Bridges to Life after the horrific murder of
his sister. Bridges brings volunteers to speak with felons in prison
about the impact of crime in the belief that empathy and remorse
will change the hearts of the men so they do not commit new crimes
after their release.
Center for Teaching Entrepreneurship
ReDonna Rodgers founded CTE, which teaches Milwaukee African-American
youth how to be entrepreneurs, seeking to revive the tradition of
self-reliance she saw in her stepfather. CTE helps these children
start and run their own small businesses.
Reading Excellence & Discovery Foundation
New York, NY
Al Sikes' READ Foundation pairs poor readers in grades K-2 with
academically-successful teenagers to help these kids learn to read.
Their efforts have helped over half of these kids improve their
reading by a full grade level.
San Francisco, CA
Up Glo, headed by Jane Leu, acculturates immigrants to succeed
in America, and works with employers to help them better understand
the skills in the immigrant workforce.
Lemley and Deanne Pearn
The First Place Fund for Youth
FPYF, founded by Amy Lemley, provides safe, affordable housing
and supportive service to former foster children who, upon reaching
18 years of age, are no longer supported by foster care. They work
to provide these young adults with the skills needed to live independently.
Living Lands and Waters
East Moline, IL
Chad Pregracke founded Living Lands and Water to clean up the banks
of the Mississippi, along which he grew up. LL&W organizes thousands
of volunteers and its four barges, which operate as a floating recycling
center, to make America's greatest waterway a cleaner and safer
Tenbusch and Daniel Varner
Mike Tenbusch and Dan Varner founded Think Detroit to give Detroit
kids access to the kinds of well-coached and well-equipped sports
teams they had in their youth in Detroit. Over 5,000 children are
currently enrolled, and TD has renovated five baseball diamonds
in a previously dilapidated city park.
Sara Horowitz founded Working Today to represent the needs and
concerns of the growing independent workforce. Her non-profit insurance
brokerage provides portable, affordable health insurance products
for self-employed individuals who otherwise might join the ranks
of the uninsured.
Gerald Chertavian, a one-time software magnate, is the founder
of Year Up, an intensive education and apprenticeship program for
urban young (18-24) adults. The Program is aimed at placing these
people, with limited skills but good attitudes, at IT help desks
and other behind-the-scenes computer-dependent jobs.
William S. Barnes
Shepherd’s Hope, Inc
Rev. William Barnes formed Shepherd's Hope to help working men
and women who lacked health care benefits. His group organizes a
staff of volunteers, including doctors and nurses, to run eight
evening medical clinics for poor families without health insurance.
Schramm, Founder and CEO
College Summit, founded by J.B. Schramm, works to increase the
number of college admissions among mid-tier, low-income kids. It
runs workshops and training sessions designed to help them navigate
the college admissions process.
New Jersey Orators
New Jersey Orators is a public speaking training and competition
program for African-American youth. Run on a volunteer basis by
James Hunter, NJO provides an oasis for academically-oriented students.
(deceased) and Catherine Dixon
JUMP: Junior Uniformed Mentoring Program
JUMP, a military-style after-school program for children in Buffalo,
ceased operation following the death of its founder, John Dixon.
Federal Credit Union/Credit Where Credit is Due
New York, NY
Credit Where Credit is Due is a non-profit organization designed
to increase low-income people's access to, understanding of, and
control over financial services. In addition to operating a neighborhood
credit union, it provides financial literacy education programs
to youth and adults.
Adler and Rajiv Vinnakota
The SEED Foundation
The SEED charter school, founded by Eric Adler and Rajiv Vinnakota,
is a Washington, D.C. boarding school where kids learn in a safe,
secure, and highly-structured environment. Recipient of many awards,
the SEED School this year was selected to receive the prestigious
Innovations in American Government Award, from Harvard's Kennedy
School of Government.
Steppingstone is an intensive academic programboth after-school
and on Saturdays during the school year and over the summerwhich
helps poor children in Boston qualify for academically-selective
public or private high schools. It is run by Michael Danziger, a