FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE // Contact: Yusef Robb, 323-384-1789
ROCKEFELLER FOUNDATION AWARDS $250K GRANT TO ACCELERATOR FOR AMERICA
Non-profit Accelerator is focused on launching local initiatives on jobs and infrastructure that can be replicated city-by-city across the nation
AUGUST 21, 2018 -- Accelerator for America announced today a $250,000 grant from The Rockefeller Foundation to support inclusionary job creation efforts in local communities.
"As a mayor, I know first-hand that our economy has to work for everyone," said Accelerator Advisory Council Chair and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti. "The growing barbell economy is a ticking time bomb, and with Washington so broken, it's up to us at the local level to find our own solutions and then share them with our peers. I want to thank The Rockefeller Foundation for their generosity and partnership with the Accelerator, and I want to personally thank Rockefeller President Raj Shah for his wise counsel and support."
"The Rockefeller Foundation believes that everyone living and working in the United States should have access to a good job and a secure future—even as the economy, the job market, and the workplace change," said Dr. Rajiv J. Shah, president of The Rockefeller Foundation. "Accelerator for America is elevating people and organizations at the local level to improve lives and better communities, and we're grateful for their good work."
"We are humbled by this vote of confidence from the Rockefeller Foundation, especially as an organization that's been around for less than a year," said Accelerator CEO Rick Jacobs. "The Accelerator is working on a new dynamic to make national change that's driven community-by-community, and real change is only possible when everyone is part of and benefits from it. It's a good thing that the new tax law contained Opportunity Zones — but now the challenge is to make sure this program benefits the low-income and working communities it was meant to help."
"A sustainable economic future cannot be achieved through policymaking that's only focused on those already at the top," said Angela Glover Blackwell, an Accelerator for America Advisory Council Member and CEO of Policylink, which focuses on public policy to improve access and opportunity for all low-income people and communities of color. "The Rockefeller Foundation's support will be critical to the Accelerator's work to create economic opportunity for all, including the nation's most vulnerable communities and people."
Accelerator for America is currently working with the mayors of South Bend, IN; Oklahoma City, OK; and Louisville, KY to help them develop plans to secure Opportunity Zone investments with the intent that they can serve as templates for other cities. So-called "opportunity tax incentives" were included in the federal tax bill enacted at the end of 2017, and the Accelerator's initiative was launched with the belief that just as private enterprises go through new tax laws to identify and take advantage of every opportunity available to them, so too should local governments.
Accelerator for America is also is working with local governments across the country to help them succeed in generating local infrastructure revenues. An example is Los Angeles County's Measure M, which was approved in November 2016and generates $120 billion and 465,000 career jobs. On that same election day, which also elected Donald Trump to the White House, local governments nationwide approved $230 billion in local infrastructure improvements.
About Accelerator for America:
Accelerator for America is a national non-profit launched in November 2017 that's focused on launching local initiatives on jobs and infrastructure that can be replicated city-by-city across the nation. It is led by an Advisory Council (https://acceleratorforamerica.com/advisory_council) comprising mayors, founders, CEOs, angel investors, experts and non-profit leaders.
About The Rockefeller Foundation:
For more than 100 years, The Rockefeller Foundation's mission has been to promote the well-being of humanity throughout the world. Together with partners and grantees, The Rockefeller Foundation strives to catalyze and scale transformative innovations, create unlikely partnerships that span sectors, and take risks others cannot – or will not. For more information, visit www.rockefellerfoundation.org.