By Rabbi Elan Babchuck and Bradley Caro Cook, Ed.D.
Election week is where the future of our country hangs in the balance. This most recent election day, individuals turned out in force to cast their vote. They went to the polls with deep purpose, and then wore their “I Voted” stickers with great pride.
With the same passion and urgency that drove so many to the polls, a diverse group of 30 spiritual leaders convened on election day for the opening retreat of the 3rd cohort of Glean Network’s Start Fellowship. These spiritual leaders are learning together and building new ventures, which help people live better lives, become better people, and ensure strong faith-based communities for the future.
These spiritual entrepreneurs approach every day like election day. They are breaking the cycle of human trafficking, healing those impacted by drug addiction, creating intentional communities for marginalized individuals, and re-imagining faith in a changing world.
The fate of their ventures, worlds, and communities hang in the balance every day, just as our country does on election day. Every day, these 30 spiritual entrepreneurs passionately lead their ventures with a firm belief that the future of faith in America – and all the individual souls who seek to be served by it – can be shaped by their entrepreneurial spirit, on election day and every day.
The Future of Faith in America
Just as elections determine the collective direction of our country, these thirty spiritual entrepreneurs are ensuring a vibrant American spiritual landscape for generations to come. Just as every vote can serve to tip the political scales, our hope is that each of their ventures will tip the scales of faith towards an equitable, just, and abundant world.
Glean Network is an outgrowth of Clal, the National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, and the Start fellowship is delivered in partnership with the Columbia Business School’s Venture For All. Start provides an ecosystem of support to the faith-rooted spiritual entrepreneurs who are reweaving the social, cultural, and spiritual fabric of America.
Rabbi Elan Babchuck is the Founding Director of Glean Network, an incubator and network for entrepreneurs who are building new models of faith in action. Elan also serves as the Director of Innovation at Clal, a think-tank focused on the future of faith in America. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bradley Caro Cook, Ed.D., is the co-founder of Career Up Now and thrives when developing simple solutions for society’s complex problems. He is an UpStart alumnus, Eli Talk Fellow, a member of the Schusterman ROI Community, a Glean cohort member, co-founder of the City of Beverly Hills’ entrepreneurship incubator, and enjoys sharing his thoughts on reimagining Jewish life.