Business and Nonprofit Leaders Convene to Discuss Working Together to Increase Economic Opportunity in the U.S.

Tuesday, April 15th, 2014
Press Contact:
Maureena Thompson
April 15, 2014

Hope Street Group Colloquium in Washington, DC Encourages Collaboration and Progress

Washington, DC – Last Thursday, at a time when national politics are synonymous with gridlock and partisanship, nearly 100 thought leaders and expert practitioners from across the country convened at the Hope Street Group Annual Colloquium in Washington, D.C. to discuss how to foster greater economic opportunity in the United States.

Focused on identifying and expanding best practices in education, workforce development and health, the daylong, invitation-only working session offered a unique opportunity for corporations, foundations, government leaders, tech innovators, and social entrepreneurs to share insights and strategize on pressing domestic policy issues.

“Hope Street Group’s annual Colloquium creates a one-of-a-kind opportunity for creative leaders from the technology, business, government and social sectors to come together and think big about ensuring economic opportunity in America—and making sure this change starts now,” said participant Guy Halfteck, Founder and CEO of Knack, a technology startup based in Palo Alto, CA.

Guest speakers at the event included Jim Shelton, Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, La June Montgomery Tabron, President & CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Seth Goldman, Co-Founder and CEO of Honest Tea, a unit of The Coca-Cola Company (NASDAQ:KO), and Jamie Merisotis, President & CEO of Lumina Foundation. Steve Clemons, Washington Editor at Large for The Atlantic, served as moderator.

Throughout the day, the diverse group of participants worked to break down silos by collaboratively assessing barriers and agreeing upon plans of action for bold and sustainable impact. Specific challenges addressed included connecting learning to employment, a hot topic given the recent announcement of President Obama’s Youth CareerConnect grant program, entrepreneurship and upward mobility, as well as advancing cultures of health in workplaces and broader communities.

“The real power of Hope Street Group is its ability to work across political lines, tirelessly and enthusiastically applying innovation and bold, new solutions in the fields of education, workforce and healthcare. Their dedication to collaboration and scaling of the most effective new ideas profoundly impacts our ability to achieve quality outcomes in these vital areas,” said Emily DeRocco, Hope Street Group Board Member and CEO and Principal of E3 Engage Educate Employ.

The Hope Street Group Annual Colloquium is held in Washington, DC and serves to facilitate conversations that will positively influence social progress and enhance domestic policy outcomes at local, state, and national levels.

As members of Hope Street Group’s network, Colloquium participants encourage excellence in K-12 education, career pathways, and community health by striving to equip individuals and communities with the tools, knowledge and resources they need to thrive.

Funded by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Walmart Foundation, and PG&E (NYSE:PCG), last week’s meeting marked the sixth year of the event.


Founded on South Hope Street in Los Angeles, Hope Street Group is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to expanding economic opportunity and prosperity for all Americans.

A coalition of the reasonable, we are committed to helping further innovative and collaborative reform efforts in education, health and jobs & workforce.

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