The 2nd Annual Anthem Awards | Finalists Announced January 2023


Judge Spotlight

Meet Wendy Steele, Founder & Chief Executive at Impact100 Global

After feeling frustrated with women’s voices in philanthropy being ignored and not given space, Wendy Steele started Impact100. She wanted to empower and encourage women in philanthropy to organize and make an impact on the world around them. Impact100 now organizes funds from their chapters across the globe and gives high-impact grants to nonprofits enacting change. 

For those who are unfamiliar, can you tell us a bit about yourself and the work that you do?

Absolutely. Back in 2001, after being frustrated by the barriers that were keeping women on the sidelines of philanthropy and community involvement, I created Impact100.  

The idea is simple: gather at least 100 women in the same community who each donate $1,000. Pool 100% of that money into high-impact grants of $100,000 or more to nonprofits solving the most pressing problems in the areas of Education, Arts & Culture, Family, Health & Wellness, and Environment. Members assess the applications, narrow them down to one Finalists in each category, and then vote to award the funds. 

Now, more than 20 years later, women around the globe (and some men, too!) have given away more than $105 million to worthy nonprofits and we are growing strong, with new Impact100 chapters forming around the globe.

What expertise are you bringing as a judge for The Anthem Awards? 

For more than 20 years I have met and evaluated so many remarkable nonprofits across a broad spectrum of causes. Each doing important work to bring change.  

What are you looking for in Anthem Awards entries? 

I am looking for solutions that will bring sustainable benefit to the communities they serve. I look for innovative ideas that bring new answers to stubborn problems.

What does it take for a project or campaign to cause real-world change? 

Real-world change happens when a project/campaign fully understands the situation and the corresponding factors that contribute to the problem and provides a comprehensive solution. These solutions should include all stakeholders and be clear on how and why the solution works.  

What social impact campaign, grassroot effort, fundraiser or project has recently inspired you? 

I am honestly inspired everyday by so many grassroots campaigns. The one that comes to mind was a Gold Award Recipient last year. It’s called GirlTrek, and it is really moving the needle on Black women’s health through walking. It is simple and powerful – designed to improve mental and physical health in communities. I love it. 


To get your work seen by trailblazers of the industry, such as Steele, submit your work to the 2nd Annual Anthem Awards! Click here to enter.


Patagonia – Don’t Buy This Jacket

Patagonia has put social impact at the core of their brand mission and values from the start, and their iconic Don’t Buy This Jacket campaign demonstrates how brands can use their platform to make an impact — or better yet, to help reduce our impact. This 2011 ad ran in the New York Times on Black Friday, making a lasting impression for its bold message addressing the issue of consumerism head on and asking readers to take the Common Threads Initiative pledge to reduce, repair, reuse, recycle, and reimagine a world where we take only what nature can replace.

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Ad Council’s Love Has No Labels Movement

Love Has No Labels is a movement by The Ad Council to promote diversity, equity and inclusion of all people across race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age and ability.

Read our Q&A with Heidi Arthur, the Ad Council’s Chief Campaign Development Officer on the team behind LHNL collaborates with partners to combat implicit bias—from crafting PSAs to driving viewers to take action, to how brands and companies should approach corporate social responsibility with authenticity.

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