Announcing 2016’s Call to Action Grant Winners

By Shawna Samuelson / Mar 01, 2016


Call To Action Grants

This year we expanded our grant program beyond nonprofits to include social ventures and individual entrepreneurs that are making positive social and environmental change. We pored over more than 120 applications from worthy organizations across the globe, all working towards making our world a better place. We are honored to announce our list of 2016 winners—including a little about each organization, the change they are looking to make, and the specific grant awarded:

Western Natural Foods


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  • Based in San Francisco, this registered Public Benefit Corporation is looking to redefine the food industry. Depending on your source, anywhere from 61 percent to 70 percent of the average American’s caloric intake consists of highly processed foods. These foods are often chock-full of preservatives, chemicals, and excessive sugar.Western Natural Foods is building a collection of consumer packaged goods that consist entirely of healthy brands—no sugar-laden junk food or frankenfoods in this portfolio. 

    Oliver Russell has awarded Western Natural Foods a $7,500 grant to put towards agency services, to be determined as new brands are acquired

    HATCH Ostinato Project


    An extension of HATCH Experience, the Ostinato Project serves as a platform for musicians, composers, students, and music teachers to collaborate, communicate, share, and mentor—no matter where they live and study. The collaborative pieces created by music classes through Ostinato result in actual productions that can be licensed and sold, generating funding back to that specific music program. HATCH Ostinato provides an educational, engaging way to sustainably fund music education in all communities, and brings world-class music education to underserved communities that may not have school programs.

    We have awarded the Ostinato Project $25,500 in agency services to be put towards a responsive website that will elevate the visibility of the program. The hope is that the refreshed website will help attract new partners and collaborators, and scale the project beyond Montana.

    Central Addition LIV District


    One of Boise’s oldest neighborhoods is at the center of an ambitious project—one that’s taking place right in our own backyard. Spearheaded by the City of Boise, the goal of the Central Addition LIV District is to revitalize an overlooked area of Boise’s downtown and create a sustainable neighborhood that integrates existing commercial real estate and new residential livability with green turnkey development to attract future businesses.  

    We have awarded the Central LIV District $10,000 in agency services to help establish a brand strategy and communications effort for this urban sustainability project.

    Greenspeed Research


    With a mission “to create learning opportunities for the STEM disciplines and renewable energy sources,” Greenspeed provides hands-on experiences that introduce students to sustainable energy through projects around high-performance racing and solar-powered goKarts (a fairly interesting subject for most, but especially high school students). 

    We have awarded Greenspeed Research a $1,000 cash donation to help fuel their efforts.



    Access to refrigeration can be limited for farmers in developing countries. Once fruits and vegetables are harvested they start to deteriorate without proper storage. Wakati’s product utilizes a solar-powered, tent-like storage system that creates a humid, microclimate to preserve the harvested foods—extending their shelf life and allowing small-holder farmers to boost their income.

    We have awarded Wakati a $1,000 cash donation to help fund a pilot study in Kenya.

    Looking Toward 2017

    Each year we’ve offered our grants and in-kind services, we’ve received more and more applicants. This year was a record, with applicants spread across four continents, and an amazing variety of disciplines, missions, and needs. We’re proud to lend a hand to these purpose-driven organizations, and extend our reach and our values around the globe. 

    If you applied this year, please know that determining the winners was an extremely difficult process. The quality of your work is amazing, and we hope you’ll check back next year when our Call to Action to create social impact goes out again. 

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    Thumbnails People Shawna Samuelson

    Shawna Samuelson

    As Account Services Director, Shawna's job is to work with the client, orchestrate a network of resources, and deliver the project on time and on budget. She guides Fortune 50 clients such as Hewlett-Packard at the same time she’s helping a scrappy startup like MealTicket. Positive, professional, and a bona-fide people person, Shawna knows how to earn clients’ trust—not just because of who she is, but also because she flat-out gets it done.

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