Celebrating purpose &
mission-driven work

August 13, 2021


Anthem Club

The Anthem Club is a professional networking and convening space for folks who work in the social impact community. Held by humans across non-profits and digital organizing, as well as journalists, documentary filmmakers, creatives and marketers, the Anthem Club is a digital and offline squad that comes together to share what’s working on the ground and inspire each other to build new dynamics for a better future.

To nominate an impact professional from your company or organization, please fill out the form here.

Joi Lee is an Immersive Media Journalist & Documentary Filmmaker

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?
I helped develop and launch an initiative at Al Jazeera called My People, Our Stories, where we equipped young storytellers around the world with 360 cameras and trained them how to use it to document their own stories. From Za’atari refugee camp in Jordan to Los Angeles, the initiative aimed to democratize both storytelling tools and platforms. The results were clear — people produced videos that were uniquely and firmly centered in their own voice and narrative, telling their stories in the way that only they could do.

Fabienne Roc is a Sr Writer & Producer at BET

What is your dream social impact project?
I’d love to work on a project that educated people on how to identify different signs of mental health-driven episodes; what healthy ways we can respond that is safe for others, provide resources, education, and just overall combat any negative stigmas around mental health disorders such as but not limited to bipolar, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder, etc. Normalizing how many may live with and how it may look very different depending on the individual. And allowing for more compassion and support for those who do.

Max Steinman is a Campaign Director at Exposure Labs

Was there a moment in your life when you knew you wanted to pursue a career in social impact work?
Growing up in a family of educators, I think I always saw work as a way to make an impact. However, this drive came into greater focus during college when I served on American Legacy Foundation’s Youth Speakers Bureau. ALF is the organization behind the prolific Truth campaign from the 90s that used attention-grabbing tactics to expose the truth about Big Tobacco’s deceptive marketing practices. As a member of their Speakers Bureau, I spoke at youth conferences across the country, sharing the Truth about Big Tobacco and empowering them to become social change advocates in their community. It was a formative experience that I still draw on in my role at Exposure Labs where our films Chasing Ice, Chasing Coral, and The Social Dilemma reveal powerful truths that can mobilize new audiences to action.

Joey Blumenfeld is Social Impact Consultant at The Aspen Institute.

What was your first job in social impact?
My first job in social impact was a role on the newly formed Corporate Social Responsibility team at AOL in 2011.  Prior to the formation of this team, I was a Senior Account Manager on the Sales team at AOL for 3.5 yrs, but I always had a deep passion for and interest in social impact- specifically around how a company could and should leverage its resources to support the local communities that they operate in.  Much longer story short, while I was on the AOL Sales team, a colleague of mine received the green light from our new CEO and CMO to launch this new CSR team- and like the shark that I can be, I wasted no time and immediately put together a case for the CMO detailing how and why I would be an asset to this new team. As I had a strong track record with the company from my experience on the Sales team, and as I had mapped out how my skill set would translate well for this new role, I received approval to join this new team and I have never looked back.  And when I give advice to young people who would like to pursue a career in social impact, the first thing I say is to explore the opportunities within the company where you currently are- does your company have a social impact team? If not, build a case around why your company should create this team (and why you should lead it!).  And if your company already has a social impact team, start out by expressing your interest to learn more from the team / volunteer with the team  / find creative ways to leverage your current skill set to support the team’s goals, etc. Build a meaningful relationship with the team and express your interest early so that when they do have an opening, you will be top of mind.

Grace Lee is World Wildlife Fund’s Senior Specialist, Activism and Outreach

What advice would you give to young people who would like to pursue a career in social impact?
Your career can look different from the traditional idea of “working in social impact;” it’s not a singular industry. There are so many opportunities that address social challenges—find something you enjoy and can be successful in and figure out what skills and strengths you can bring to the table. To me, social impact is about leaving a space better than when you entered it—whether it’s through outward facing environmentalism work or changing internal dynamics and structures within your own workplace setting. Above all, I believe that with a growth mindset, you will thrive.

Sarah Springer is the Co-Founder of Advocates for Inclusion in Media

Was there a moment in your life when you knew you wanted to pursue a career in social impact work?

The moment I knew I HAD to pursue a career in social impact work through storytelling was in 2005, my sophomore year of high school. I was required to take a journalism class and decided to write an investigative piece covering the racism happening to Black students on campus. The story focused on a subject that the school administration and the community often ignore. So, when the story came out, it forced many people in positions of power to rethink how they handled and protected students suffering from discrimination at school. They then had to create policy around the issue, and from there, I was hooked. It was incredible to see how storytelling could impact the way people viewed a problem and their actions to change things for the better. After that, I went to USC to study journalism and have been telling stories to impact change ever since.

Brian Lightbody is Creative Director at RYOT Studio

What is your favorite past or present campaign or piece of work (i.e. book, film etc)

The Greenpeace piece with Italian composer and pianist Ludovico Einaudi playing on a glacier in the arctic is so beautiful, artful and powerful, that is one I always think about.

Heather Shen is the Co-Founder of Praxis Labs

What was your first job in social impact?
One of my first internships in undergrad was with Summerbridge Hong Kong, an organization focused on promoting educational equity for Hong Kong students across socioeconomic backgrounds. As a volunteer teacher, I worked with  students to grow their confidence in English language; the experience of learning from and with my students reinforced the importance of working across and celebrating cultural differences. It gave me the first look at the impact an individual can have and made me excited to explore what larger scale impact could look like.

Miriam Fogelson is the Acting Director at Harness

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?

I love initiating and producing collaborations that use the power of storytelling and culture to build community, shift perceptions, spark imaginations and inspire action towards a more equitable and just world. The most impactful and inventive work often happens when bringing people together from different backgrounds to learn, dream, and build together. Some examples of projects that I’ve produced include:

Halal in the Family, a 2015 Peabody Award-winning web series and impact campaign that shifted the narrative about Muslim Americas. I was an Associate Producer during my time at Moore + Associates.

#BeCounted, a digital media campaign produced by Harness (where I’m the Acting Director) featuring influential artists and multilingual culturally competent content to encourage hard to count communities to participate in the 2020 census.

Culture Surge, a coalition of BIPOC artists and community leaders that builds narrative power for communities who have been disenfranchised in the democratic process. In 2020, Culture Surge reached over 45 million people with inspiring content and cultural activations that encouraged voter turnout and defended a fair election. Harness is a co-founder of Culture Surge.

Iris Andrews is the Co-Founder of New Constellations

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?

The work I’m doing right now is what I’m proudest of. We created New Constellations to hold and grow space for communities to imagine and shape better futures, and to find and illuminate new constellations of hope and possibility we can orient our lives towards as we explore what true transformation will take.

I’m proud of it because it fuses big ideas, powerful experiences of connection and creativity and concrete opportunities to make change, in ways that enable people very different from each other to find common ground and common purpose. The results so far have been humbling and it’s such a gift to be able to work directly in communities to help them find agency and hope in this time of such huge uncertainty. You can check us out and listen to our audio encounters at newconstellations.co

Jaime-Jin Lewis is the Founder & CEO of Wiggle Room

Was there a moment in your life when you knew you wanted to pursue a career in social impact work?
I was lucky to be raised in a community that valued taking care of one another. The values of respect, compassion, and carrying yourself with integrity were instilled in me from a young age. These principles have shaped my career’s focus on creating social impact and fighting for more just, equitable, and caring systems. It’s a true honor to wake up every day and be able to work with brilliant accomplices to create a better world!

Sierra Lindsey Kos is an Executive Producer and Executive Creative Director.

What advice would you give to young people who would like to pursue a career in social impact? 

Work or volunteer on the campaign of a person you believe in. There is no better way to immediately bond and become connected for a lifetime to some of the brightest and kindest humans who deeply care about leaving the world better than we came into it. You’ll make no money, work a million hours but it is the greatest of gifts.

Justin Hendrix is the CEO of Tech Policy Press

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?

Recently I’ve played a role in helping advance our understanding of the January 6 insurrection at the US Capitol, including the role that social media, media and political elites played creating the conditions for violence to occur at the heart of our democratic processes. Some of that work was submitted as evidence in the second impeachment trial of former President Donald Trump, specifically work that showed how his words at the rally at the Ellipse before the insurrection helped to incite the crowd. A clearinghouse of information I have helped to produce is being archived by the Library of Congress. I hope to continue to make more impact in contributing to our understanding of the various political, social, media and technological influences that made that white supremacist attack on democracy possible, and sustain its motivations to this day.

Julia Pontecorvo is a Producer with Firelight Media & Firelight Films

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?

I was the supervising producer on Hindsight, an anthology documentary project that aimed to support BIPOC filmmakers in developing relationships with PBS stations while telling community-focused stories. The initiative was a collaboration among Firelight Media, which focuses on producing documentary films and supporting emerging filmmakers of color; Reel South, a documentary series supported by Southern PBS stations; and the Center for Asian American Media, a member of the CPB-funded National Multicultural Alliance. In my role, I got to support 8 early-career filmmakers produce important, searing films about their communities during the pandemic, bringing to light perspectives and lived experiences that typically don’t receive funding or airtime. Not only did I get to play a small role in bringing undertold narratives to the public, but I also got to support a mission that is very valuable to me: helping to make documentary filmmaking a more sustainable career for a wider variety of people.

Melissa Benjamin is Change.org‘s Chief of Staff to the COO

What is the role or project you have been a part of that you are most proud of?

In 2017 I had the pleasure of working on a campaign called “Refugees Welcome”, where we partnered with local businesses to host dinners with their employees and newly settled refugees in the city of Toronto. After so many years on the project management side of things, it was amazing to attend these dinners and get to see the impact that this kind of organizing can have.