I hope this note finds you and your loved ones healthy and well. Happy Earth Day to all of us and especially to the Earth. 

I want to share a short video I made about what I do when I’m feeling stuck. I learned this simple practice from Nancy Stubbs who in turn learned it from Katie Hendricks. I use it when I’m feeling down or confused or just a little out of sorts. It helps me move through my emotions and get to the essence of what’s going on for me, which is why it’s called “Clearing the Pipes.” 

The journal prompts for “Clearing the Pipes” can be downloaded here.

Please drop me a note and let me know if you use the practice in video and if you do, how it went. And let us know what’s keeping you up at night as a social change leader. We’ll all get through this together.  

What we’re up to these days:

No, I’m definitely not running for office.

(1) Next week, we’re recording Season 3 of the Unleashing Social Change Podcast with some extraordinary social change leaders.

(2) May 4th at 8:30 am PDT we’re interviewing Skid Row School Alum Jennifer Blatz about what trends and opportunities for systems change she is seeing from her vantage point as the CEO of StriveTogether. This will be a zoom call that all of you will be invited to join – more soon!

(3) Mid-May we’re launching our first virtual Skid Row School with a small cohort of organizations. This is our “greasy pancake” or “1x” of converting our content from live to digital. Assuming all goes well, we will offer this again late summer/early fall. Please let selena@billionsinstitute.com know if you’d like to get on the waiting list.

(4) We’re also creating 30+ modules of our very best content and offering it for FREE on the teachable platform.

(5) Finally, our offer of a half-hour pro bono coaching session still stands. Please e-mail selena@billionsinstitute.com to get hooked up with a spot.

With tremendous love and affection,

Updates From Our Alumni 

Nina Simon, Spacemaker & CEO of Of/By/For/All wrote this fantastic piece filled with insights and wisdom: How Can I Contribute? Four Steps I’m Taking to Figure It Out. Take a couple of deep breaths and give this a good read. You’ll feel better for it.


Unleashing Social Change Podcast Season 2 is Out!

  • Christine Margiotta, my wife and Executive Director of Social Venture Partners Los Angeles, on shifting their model from charity to justice. 
  • Dimitry Anselme with Facing History and Ourselves about teaching history as a way of bolstering our fragile democracy. 
  • Jason Marsh with the Greater Good Science Center on spreading research-based practices that advance happiness and well-being.
  • Kate Hilton with the Institute for Health Care Improvement on getting out of your own way as a leader.
  • Helen Smith, Forensic Psychiatrist with the National Health Service about taking the fear out of the system to unleash massive creativity.
  • Gerry Balcazar and Hugo Ramirez from Vision y Compromiso on building movements of love and support around children
  • Sasha Rabkin from Equal Opportunity Schools on bringing equity to AP/IB classes. 
  • Jake Maguire from Community Solutions on what happened after the 100k Homes Campaign ended.  If you stick around til the very end you will get to hear him tell me a hilarious story that cracks me up to this day.
  • Chris Chatmon from Kingmakers of Oakland on transforming schools to work for black and brown boys.
  • Bruce Nilles from the Rocky Mountain Institute on climate change as an equity issue and why your natural gas appliances are no good.
  • Peter O’Driscoll from the Equitable Food Initiative about how they’ve worked with the entire food production cycle to get healthy produce and fair wages for everyone.
  • Arfon Williamsa General Practitioner in Rural Wales about how he responded to the crisis of being the only doctor around for hundreds of miles.
  • Parvathi Santhoosh-Kumar, Vice-President of Equitable Results at StriveTogether, about how they’re working with dozens of communities to go from proof points to systems transformation on behalf of children everywhere.
  • Tema Okun, Duke University, Facing into your own Racism with Courage and Love. 

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