We live in a global society. From our economies to our health to our environment, we are all connected. And though most people want to make the world a better, safer, more nurturing place, we need inspiration to awaken our own hero inside – and act.
That’s the realization that motivated Joseph Deitch to create the Elevate Prize.
We’re here to empower passionate purpose-driven leaders, innovators and activists, and dramatically amplify their impact – not only through financial support, but by building powerful platforms that resonate around the world.
By amplifying the impact of these heroes, we believe we can ignite a chain reaction of problem-solving, giving, social entrepreneurship, philanthropy, activism and goodness on a global scale.
We’re starting with a prize as big as our ambition – and our future’s as bold as the change we hope to inspire.
Alone it may seem impossible. Together, nothing is.
Joe is the chairman of Commonwealth Financial Network, which he founded in 1979 and which currently has $200B in assets under management.
He is also chairman of Southworth Development, a golf and resort real estate company with award-winning properties in the United States, Scotland and The Bahamas.
In 2011, he helped to form Commonwealth Cares to maximize the impact of Commonwealth Financial Network’s charitable efforts. Since its inception in 2010, Commonwealth Cares has supported more than 360 different organizations that relieve human suffering, promote social and economic growth, and protect our planet’s resources.
In 2012, Joe founded the Deitch Leadership Institute at the Boston Latin School, the oldest public school in the United States. The institute provides leadership training and focuses on the individual growth of students as well as on community improvement.
Joe is a Tony Award-winning Broadway producer of The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess and the author of the bestselling book, > Elevate: An Essential Guide to Life.
Carolina Garcia Jayaram is the Founding CEO of The Elevate Prize Foundation, a global purpose-driven nonprofit that serves to amplify social impact and empower passionate problem solvers, leaders, and innovators.
García Jayaram has over two decades of experience in leading nonprofit organizations dedicated to enriching and shaping social impact, philanthropic, and cultural communities.
She most recently served as CEO & president of the National YoungArts Foundation and, prior to that, as president & CEO of United States Artists, where she managed $25M in unrestricted awards to the country’s most accomplished artists.
Previously, García Jayaram was the executive director of the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC). While there, she was a member of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Cultural Advisory Council and was named “Chicagoan of the Year in the Arts” by the Chicago Tribune.
Currently, García Jayaram is a member of the Fast Company Impact Council, an invitation-only collective of innovative leaders and the most creative people in business. She also serves on the Advisory Council for Ruth’s List Florida and on the Latin American and Latinx Committee for the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM). García Jayaram is also a proud Georgetown Ambassador for Women, Peace, and Security.
García Jayaram received her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Miami School of Law, where she is now an adjunct professor as well as a member of the Advisory Committee for the Art + Sports Law LLM program.
She is of Cuban and Spanish descent, and currently resides in Miami Beach, Florida with her husband and two sons.
Born and raised in Miami, Alex has dedicated his career to social change, advocacy, and local philanthropic efforts across the county for nearly a decade. Before joining The Elevate Prize Foundation, Alex worked in the programs team over several years managing multi-million-dollar donor-advised grantmaking accounts, scholarship programs for student across Miami-Dade County, and supported several competitive grantmaking initiatives, including providing leadership on the LGBTQ Community Fund and leading community engagement on the Community Grants Program.
Alex also provided thought leadership and community engagement support on the creation of the Racial Equity Fund, which helped seed the South Florida Racial Justice Roundtable. Alex has also provided direct consultation to local nonprofits and has facilitated focus groups and surveys intended to create progressive change in Miami- Dade County.
Alex is also an alum for Maven Leadership Collective, an ideas lab that cultivates equity in social entrepreneurship and carves out a path for queer and trans persons of color and allies to build more resilient communities. Alex is a current board member of two grassroots organizations in Miami; SMASH, which is committed to rooting out slumlords and the conditions they create in housing across the county and Before It’s Too Late, which uses art and virtual reality effects to sound the alarm on the effects of climate change. Alex is a proud three-term AmeriCorps VISTA alum as well. Alex currently lives in a sleepy suburb of the county with his dog Sunny and two cats Max and Boo.
Cara joins The Elevate Prize with an avid belief in storytelling’s power to lead to lasting change. She has committed her career to behavior change marketing with a focus on sustainability and equity. As The Elevate Prize’s Community Manager, she gets to connect with the wide-ranging Elevate Prize community through social media.
Cara has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies from SUNY Buffalo, and lives in the Hudson Valley, New York with her daughter, Celia.
Jewel Malone brings over 15 years of experience bridging public and private partnerships across corporate, government and nonprofit sectors all with a common purpose to advance and create healthy, sustainable communities. To date, she has stewarded over $40 million of charitable grants toward community development, education and arts and culture programs. Malone has focused on meaningful opportunities that increase organizational growth and effectiveness by infrastructure and capacity building, staff and board development, strategic planning, impact measurement, and rebranding.
Danielle has committed her career to empowering communities through development and engagement.
Before to joining The Elevate Prize Foundation, Danielle worked in community engagement at United Way of Miami-Dade, managing an early literacy intervention program that increased literacy skills for pre-school students across the county. Danielle has supported refugees as part of a resettlement program in Georgia. She led a federally funded Corporation for National and Community Service program designed to engage volunteers 55 and older to meet critical community needs. She has also worked closely with families with sick children, ensuring they had essential items and housing at Ronald McDonald House.
Matthew has committed his career to developing and implementing dynamic and innovative social impact programs globally. He has been particularly focused on creating spaces that facilitate important conversations and amplify the voices of extraordinary people who are addressing critical issues with powerful, scalable solutions.
Prior to joining the Elevate Prize Foundation, Matthew played an essential role in creating and building Solve, an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that finds and supports tech-based social entrepreneurs around the world.
Megan joins The Elevate Prize Foundation with more than 20 years of experience in program and project management in the private and non-profit sectors. Having started off in the private sector planning and executing brand experience events for consumer products, Megan was driven to translate her skills into the non-profit and philanthropic sectors in order to contribute to positive social change.
Megan later joined the Clinton Health Matters Initiative (CHMI) at the Clinton Foundation working on efforts to apply systems-change thinking to improve health outcomes for communities across the United States.
Megan, a native of Oregon, has a BA in International Studies from the University of Oregon. She currently resides with her husband and three sons in the scenic Hudson Valley in New York.
Tracy brings over two decades of experience in startup and mission-driven organizations to our team. She started her career in cable television network distribution, and in marketing syndicated and public television properties, before focusing her skills on government and non-profit arenas. She is committed to providing greater access to education and professional development opportunities to members of underserved communities
Tracy has also achieved success as a small business owner, fueled by her entrepreneurial spirit and devotion to mission. A native of New York City, she holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Harvard University and a master’s degree in marketing from the Anderson School of Management at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Tracy lives in Miami, Florida, with her adorable dog Dexter.
Vivienne joins the Elevate Prize Foundation with an unwavering commitment to address inequity, what has been a guiding principle in her work. In this role, she facilitates and supports social impact leaders that participate in the Prize, by connecting them with the resources and program elements to scale and amplify their efforts.
Prior to joining the Elevate Prize Foundation, Vivienne was a program officer at United Way of Miami-Dade. During that time, she managed the grantmaking processes of a $3 million portfolio to achieve the community investment goals of its school-age education impact area and a newer initiative to fund emerging local innovative nonprofits in Miami-Dade County.
Vivienne holds a Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Studies from Brown University. A Miami native, she enjoys the great outdoors with her dog, Rambo.