Leaders of the PresenTense: Launching Our 2015-16 Accelerators

PT NYC launch nightBy Naomi Korb Weiss and Guy Spigelman

A touch-free smartphone controlled by eye movements, designed for people who have limited use of their hands.

University students donating unused meal points to their food insecure community.

A plan to bring a local eruv online by digitizing the checking process, designed by a Colorado teen.

A cupcake bakery launched by two Bedouin women in the Negev.

A networking and empowerment forum for Haredi business women.

These innovative ventures, ignited through PresenTense’s Accelerators, are enriching community life, growing local economies, and solving core social problems. PresenTense has the privilege of training and mentoring their passionate founders, who are more than leaders of the future – they are leaders of the present. The present tense.

This year, PresenTense is launching its most diverse and vibrant program cycle to date, with 15 accelerators, more than 200 anticipated ventures, and thousands of volunteers.

Announcing our 2016 Accelerators (with funders and partners in parentheses):

North America:

ATID: equipping NYC day school educators with tools and technical support to accelerate technology solutions for the classroom (PresenTense, UJA-Federation of New York)

CJP PresenTense Boston: making it possible for passionate people in the Greater Boston Jewish community to create positive change. (Combined Jewish Philanthropies)

ConnectGens DC: empowering Jewish social innovators with the training, tools and connections to transform their big ideas into ventures that will mobilize the Jewish community across the greater Washington area. (Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, Congregation Agudas Achim)

PresenTense Colorado: empowering teens with entrepreneurial training, mentorship and micro-grants to create positive social impact in the Denver/Boulder community (PresenTense, Rose Community Foundation, Jim Joseph Foundation)

NEXTGen Detroit Fellowship: nurturing Jewish professionals dedicated to the NextGen community in Detroit to infuse innovation into their engagement work (Davidson Foundation, Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit)

PresenTense NYC: investing in our in-house laboratory based in Silicon Alley to support social impact leaders across New York City (PresenTense)

Tribe12 Fellowship: helping Philadelphia’s young professionals create or jumpstart businesses and nonprofits with values-based missions, and helping these founders leverage the power of the Jewish community for the benefit of all communities. (Tribe12)


A3i – Accelerating Inclusion in Israel: The first accelerator worldwide focused on innovative solutions for people with disabilities (Beit Issie Shapiro, Ruderman Family Foundation, Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles)

HaMeitz: Social enterprise and small business accelerator for Negev-focused ventures (Tor Hamidbar, Jewish Federation of Metrowest Ness Fund)

Lod Changemakers: Social enterprise and small business accelerator in Lod (Applied Materials, Lod Municipality)

SparkUp: Tech and industry accelerator in Ma’alot-Tarshiha (Ma’alot-Tarshiha Municipality)

Mubadren: Social and small business accelerator for the Bedouin community, based in Hura (Hura Municipal Council, JFNA Social Venture Fund)

The Haifa Project: Social tech and social business accelerator in Haifa (Boston-Haifa Connection, Haifa Young Adult Center)

Yazamim: Social enterprise accelerator in Jerusalem, now in its 7th year (The Leichtag Foundation)

Yazamiot: Small business accelerator in Jerusalem for Haredi women (Temech, Levi Lassen Foundation)

For more information about individual programs, please click on their sites above. For more information about PresenTense or to bring an accelerator to your community, please contact: contact@presentense.org

Naomi Korb Weiss and Guy Spigelman are CEOs of PresenTense.