Renewal Award Winners!

Last month, we announced that Summer Search was a finalist in the third annual Renewal Awards, a national competition recognizing local organizations driving positive change in their communities.

Thanks to Allstate, The Atlantic, and everyone in our community who voted for Summer Search, we won the runner-up prize of a $10,000 grant!

Runners UpOn stage at the Renewal Awards ceremony. From left to right: Jillian Hishaw, Esquire from F.A.R.M.S.; Ron Brownstein from The Atlantic; Dominique Stone from Profound Gentlemen; Cynthia Whitfield-Story from Allstate; Sharon de Oliveira from Summer Search; Jeremy Collins from Fugees Family.

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Fighting for Restorative Justice in Oakland

Oakland native and Summer Search Bay Area alumnus Zachary Norris believes that in order to have a strong community, “we need strong community-centered institutions.” And that is exactly what he is trying to do.

As the Executive Director of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Zachary is working with a collaborative of nonprofits to launch Restore Oakland, a new center and effort to begin reinvestment in East Oakland, California.

Zachary NorrisSummer Search Bay Area alumnus Zachary Norris.

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Pitch Your Peers: Joining Together for Greater Impact in Seattle

“Our motto is ‘Together, we can do more’​ and we all truly felt this when we were able to hand over such a large check to Summer Search! Alone, nobody in the group could have made this impact. Our members are all motivated, smart, and accomplished women who all want to help make our community better.”

That was Erin Krawiec speaking about her organization called Pitch Your Peers (or PYP, pronounced “pipe”), which she cofounded in Seattle with fellow philanthropist Aly Burks. At a PYP event in December, they presented Summer Search Seattle with a $25,000 grant — a very large check indeed!

PYP and Summer SearchFrom left to right: Aly Burks, Robyn Hsu, Lexi Keeler, Macaria Dove, Erin Krawiec, Eliza Arai Carrington.

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A Powerful Gift for International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day, a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women, and also represents a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

In celebration of this day, luxury artisan jewelry brand John Hardy announced the launch of a social campaign featuring a roster of fifteen women chosen for being catalysts of positive social change, leading by example, and living their values.

One of these notable female icons is fashion model and Summer Search Seattle alumna Ebonee Davis!

Ebonee Davis for John HardyPhoto by Jai Odell. Courtesy of John Hardy.

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Observations from the Summit: The Evolution of Mentoring

Last month, we sent a team of Summer Search staff to the 2018 National Mentoring Summit in Washington, DC. Our National Director of Research and Evaluation, Salem Valentino, Ph.D., shared her reflections from the conference in this guest blog post.


This is my sixth year as a researcher in the field of mentoring and also my sixth year attending the National Mentoring Summit. While that may not seem like an extensive period in anyone’s professional career, the field of mentoring has rapidly evolved during those six years.

SS-staff-group-MENTORSummer Search staff at the 2018 National Mentoring Summit. From left to right: Seth James Ellis, Antonio Brown, Stacey Thompson, and Salem Valentino.

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