In 1984, a group of ten gathered in a basement of an East Harlem housing project. This was the first class of STRIVE, a new take on job training and placement that focused not just on getting the chronically unemployed into jobs, but keeping them there.

 

STRIVE was founded through a collaboration between Sam Hartwell and Tom Rodman, two Manhattan-based bankers who were troubled by the chronic unemployment problem facing the residents of East Harlem and other American inner-cities in the 1980s, and Rob Carmona, an East Harlem native who had overcome multiple incarcerations and substance abuse to earn a Master of Social Work from Columbia University. STRIVE’s innovative model ran counter to much of the conventional wisdom in employment and training at the time, combining a short, intense period of job readiness training focused on the behaviors and life situations of individuals with significant challenges with rapid job placement and long-term follow-up.

More than three decades later, STRIVE's model has proven to be a highly flexible approach that works in diverse locations and cultures. In more than 20 cities across the U.S., STRIVE trains participants in skills that employers need, helping to create talent pipelines that promote our nation's prosperity. 

From its headquarters in East Harlem, STRIVE today is an international leader in helping individuals from underserved communities receive the training and support they need to obtain meaningful employment and achieve economic self sufficiency. STRIVE's 70,000 graduates have shown that a job brings dignity, hope, and a brighter future.

 

Our Outcomes Have Real Impact

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Leadership Team

 

PHil.jpg

Philip Weinberg
President & CEO

Lakythia Ferby Vice President Programs STRIVE International.jpg

Lakythia Ferby
Vice President of Programs

Hilda.jpg

Hilda Romero
Chief Financial Officer

David Melendez.jpg

David Melendez
National Vice President, Development & Communications

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Greg Wise
National Vice President

Chair & Co-Founder H. Thompson Rodman Jr. CEO, Fox Hill Real Estate

Chair & Co-Founder
H. Thompson Rodman Jr.

CEO, Fox Hill Real Estate

Vice Chair Judith B. McElnea Partner, The Jeffrey Group

Vice Chair
Judith B. McElnea
Partner, The Jeffrey Group

Treasurer Brian Friedman President, Leucadia National Corporation

Treasurer
Brian Friedman

President, Leucadia National Corporation

Secretary Andy Rahl Retired, Reed Smith LLP

Secretary
Andy Rahl

Retired, Reed Smith LLP

Chairman Emeritus & Co-Founder Samuel A. Hartwell  

Chairman Emeritus & Co-Founder
Samuel A. Hartwell

 

Arthur Kokot President, Kokot Reality Enterprises, Inc.

Arthur Kokot
President, Kokot Reality Enterprises, Inc.

Richard Barthelmes Retired, Media Executive  

Richard Barthelmes
Retired, Media Executive
 

Tonia O'Connor Chief Revenue Officer, Univision Communications, Inc.

Tonia O'Connor
Chief Revenue Officer, Univision Communications, Inc.

George Brooks Area Leader, America's People Advisory Services, Ernst & Young 

George Brooks
Area Leader, America's People Advisory Services, Ernst & Young 

Yvan-Claude Pierre Partner, Cooley LLP

Yvan-Claude Pierre
Partner, Cooley LLP

Bonnie L. Howard Independent Board Director  

Bonnie L. Howard
Independent Board Director
 

Jay Sheehy Sr. Vice President, Product Innovation, EmblemHealth

Jay Sheehy
Sr. Vice President, Product Innovation, EmblemHealth

 
Laura Slutsky President/CEO, People Finders Productions, Inc.

Laura Slutsky
President/CEO, People Finders Productions, Inc.

Phil Weinberg President/CEO, STRIVE International

Phil Weinberg
President/CEO, STRIVE International

Randy Zeno CEO, Urban Therapy/Twisted Sista

Randy Zeno
CEO, Urban Therapy/Twisted Sista

 

STRIVE is grateful to our supporters

Accenture
Aetna
Ares Management
Annie E. Casey Foundation
AT&T
Barker Welfare Foundation
Blackstone Charitable Fund
Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller Fund
Booth Ferris Foundation
Brian P. Friedman Family Foundation
Citi Foundation
Clark Foundation
Cog Hill Global, LLC
Consortium for Worker Education
David R. & Patricia D. Atkinson Foundation
Deloitte LLP
Deutsche Bank Foundation
Family Management Corporation
Fidelity Charitable Trust
Freeman Trust
George Link Foundation
HAB Bank
Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation
Hearst Foundation
Heckscher Foundation for Children
Irvin Stern Foundation
Ira W. DeCamp Foundation
JPMorgan Chase Foundation
MacDougal Family Foundation
Marble Church
Mount Sinai Health System

New York City Council
New York City Housing Authority
New York Community Trust
NYC Dept. of Correction
NYC Dept. of Youth & Community Development
NY Office of Temporary Disability Assistance
New York Women’s Foundation
NYC Center for Economic Opportunity
O’Neill Foundation
People’s United Community Foundation
Pimco Foundation
Pinkerton Foundation
Ready Foundation
Robin Hood Foundation
Rose M. Badgeley Charitable Trust
Rudin Foundation
Santander Bank
SeaChange Capital Partners
Seedco
Starbucks Foundation
Southwest Airlines
Tiger Foundation
Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone
US Department of Health and Human Services
US Department of Justice
US Department of Labor
Vanderbilt Family Foundation
Verizon Foundation
West Harlem Development Corporation
Winky Foundation
W.K. Kellogg Foundation

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