News and analysis
May 04, 2011

Ford Foundation Gives $100,000 Awards to 12 Social-Change Leaders

To mark its 75th anniversary, the Ford Foundation announced today that it is giving $100,000 apiece to a dozen people working in new and creative ways to tackle some of the world’s most persistent social problems.

The winners of the Ford Foundation Visionaries Awards are mostly from organizations and causes long supported by the foundation, and they work on a wide range of causes, including arts and culture, human rights, and technology.

The no-strings-attached awards will be given just this year. The foundation said it hoped the money would allow recipients to continue their work by relieving their financial worries for a time.

  • Steve Barr, founder of Green Dot Public Schools, in Los Angeles
  • Yochai Benkler, co-director of the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, in Cambridge, Mass.
  • Ela R. Bhatt, co-founder of Self-Employed Women’s Association, in Ahmedabad, India
  • Ellen Bravo, executive director of Family Values @ Work, in Milwaukee
  • Teddy Cruz, co-founder of the Center for Urban Ecologies, in San Diego
  • Martin Eakes, co-founder of Self-Help and chief executive of the Center for Responsible Lending, both in Durham, N.C.
  • Jeremy Heimans, co-founder of Purpose, in New York
  • Elsie McCabe Thompson, president of the Museum of African Art, in New York
  • Godfrey Mwampembwa, the Kenyan editorial cartoonists known as GADO
  • Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative, in Montgomery, Ala.
  • Alfredo Wagner Berno de Almeida, coordinator of the New Social Cartography Project of the Amazon, in Manaus, Brazil
  • Tarcila Rivera Zea, founder of the Center for Indigenous People’s Cultures of Peru, in Lima