Comcast NBCUniversal hosted the launch of Fast Forward's 2017 tech nonprofit Accelerator on Tuesday, June 13th. Fast Forward is a startup accelerator that exclusively equips tech nonprofits with the financial and human capital necessary to scale. Like a typical tech startup, tech nonprofits build products using technology, but they build for social good instead of profit.
Accelerator launch attendees included leaders from the media industry, emerging social tech entrepreneurs, and investors from the tech for good community. The accelerator launch served as an opportunity to network and connect these social tech entrepreneurs with potential investors, corporate partners, and Fast Forward Accelerator alumni.
The inspirational evening kicked off with presentations from Jody Kochansky, Managing Director, Head of the Aladdin Product Group at BlackRock; Jessica Clancy, VP of Corporate Social Responsibility at Comcast NBCUniversal; Shannon Farley, Co-Founder & Executive Director of Fast Forward; Kevin Barenblat, Co-Founder & President of Fast Forward; Jared Chung, CEO of CareerVillage.org; Ashley Treni, Co-Founder of JustFix.NYC; Peter Gault, CEO of Quill; and Sam Sinyangwe, Co-Founder of We the Protesters.
Fast Forward also unveiled the nine new tech nonprofits who will join Fast Forward’s fourth accelerator cohort. The nine teams hail from cities like Kansas City, MO; Chapel Hill, NC; New York, NY; Washington, DC; and San Francisco, CA. Selection is based on the founder’s leadership and grit, strong tech platforms, and their potential for impact.
Each accelerator team receives a $25,000 philanthropic grant, curated training, introductions to 100+ mentors, access to the tech nonprofit community, and the opportunity to pitch to hundreds of funders at Demo Day in September. The program runs three months, and officially kicks-off in San Francisco on July 6th.
As a company uniquely positioned to inform, empower, and inspire, Comcast NBCUniversal embraces opportunities like Fast Forward’s 2017 Accelerator launch to create conversation and mobilize action to address some of the nation’s most critical issues. We wish Fast Forward's 2017 Accelerator cohort the best of luck and can't wait to see their work advanace. Through incredible partners like Fast Forward, we believe tech nonprofits can power solutions to solve the world’s toughest problems.
2017 Fast Forward Accelerator cohort includes:
- Beyond 12: a digital mentorship platform transforming first-generation students into college graduates (San Francisco, CA)
- Concrn: a mobile 911-alternative to dispatch help for people in crisis (San Francisco, CA)
- IssueVoter: a nonpartisan platform for engaging all citizens in today’s politics (New York, NY)
- LibreTaxi: an open-source ridesharing app for hard-to-reach communities (San Francisco, CA)
- MindRight: a proactive daily mental health support for teens via SMS-based coaching (Washington, DC)
- MyHealthEd: a sex education for middle school students delivered through text-based storytelling (Chapel Hill, NC)
- Online SOS: a platform that connects victims of online harassment to resources and support (San Francisco, CA)
- Onward: an employer-benefit platform helping low-wage workers weather financial instability (Kansas City, MO)
- Raheem.ai: a chatbot for anonymously reporting and rating experiences with police (Washington, DC)
Check out more photos of the 2017 Accelerator launch here, and see #AGG17 for more first hand accounts.