2011

2011 Purpose Prize year designation

White House Honors Purpose Prize Winner as a Champion for Change

Editor’s note: Purpose Prize winner Nancy Sanford Hughes, a longtime member of the volunteer organization Rotary International, was honored last week at the White House alongside 11 fellow Rotarians as a Champion of Change.


Wanjiru Kamau will never forget the shock of arriving in Oregon from Kenya, moving as a 20-year-old student to a foreign land. "Leaving my family and my country, coming to a place where I knew no one, that was the most difficult but also the most exciting thing I've done in my life," says Kamau, now 70. To help other African immigrants going through the same difficult transition, Kamau started the nonprofit African Immigrant and Refugee Foundation. In 2011, she won The Purpose Prize.

For his work spurring entrepreneurship in Detroit, Randal Charlton recently received the prestigious Purpose Prize. Sponsored by Civic Ventures, the prize is awarded to people over 60 who are making extraordinary contributions in their encore careers. Charlton plans to use the award money to finance a new nonprofit called BOOM! The New Economy, which helps people over 50 start companies and shape new careers.

Purpose Prize winner Randal Charlton used his second career to help entrepreneurs in Detroit get their dreams off the ground. He is now inspiring others to turn retirement into a new beginning. Watch his compelling story in this video.

To mitigate his financial risks as a serial entrepreneur, Purpose Prize winner Randal Charlton streamlined his life and expenses at age 60. He rented a small apartment, had no credit card debt and built a house only when he could afford it. He drives a 10-year-old car and has no problem wearing business suits, ties and shoes from a secondhand store.

Why Older Entrepreneurs Have an Edge

Editor's note: This essay first appeared on the Harvard Business Review's website. Find, and comment on, the original here.


Edward Moscovitch and Barbara Gardner have been named Purpose Prize fellows for their work in founding and advancing the Bay State Reading Institute. The nonprofit works with 37 Massachusetts elementary schools helping teachers find new, innovative approaches in teaching children to read.

In what might be a surprising trend, a Kauffman Foundation report notes that boomers make up a rising share of entrepreneurs.That's not surprising to Detroit-based Purpose Prize winner Randal Charlton. He says said the trend is being driven by people living longer and boomers' genuine interest in civic ventures.

Encouraged by the 2010 health care act’s emphasis on primary care, care coordination and chronic disease management, pilot programs that rely on the talent and experience of boomers are emerging to try to improve the fragmented medical system. Many programs rely on coaches, navigators and advocates. The paid or unpaid work they do is well suited to boomers seeking encore careers, said Phyllis N. Segal, a vice president of Civic Ventures.

Award-winning journalist Janey Pauley explores the inspriation and the work of 2011 Purpose Prize winner Jenny Bowen, who is dramatically improving the lives of thousands of orphans in China. Pauley calls Bowen "a woman on a mission."

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