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Foundation seeks 20 civic innovators from around the world for its second class of Obama Fellows; applications are open and available on

Chicago, IL – Today, the Obama Foundation opened applications for its second class of the Obama Foundation Fellowship. The Fellowship supports and elevates outstanding civic innovators from around the world with the goals of strengthening the impact of their life-changing work and inspiring a new wave of civic innovation.

The Fellowship offers hands-on training, resources, and leadership development to rising leaders who are working alongside their communities to solve important public problems in creative and powerful ways. Fellows participate in four multi-day gatherings where they collaborate with each other, connect with potential partners and resources, and collectively push their work forward. The program runs for two years, with the Foundation selecting a new class of Fellows each year, allowing the overlapping classes a chance to learn from each other and share best practices. Applications for the next Fellowship class are open at

“Our inaugural group of Fellows have been an inspiring example of leaders building transformational change throughout the world, and we’re excited to work with a new cohort of civic innovators who continue to expand our views on what is possible when individuals deeply invest in their communities,” said David Simas, Chief Executive Officer at the Obama Foundation. “We were so energized by not just the quantity, but the quality of civic innovators around the world who applied. As we open applications for the next class of changemakers, we look forward to continuing to recognize the groundbreaking work of these leaders and providing the tools needed to advance their work.”

More than 20,000 people from 191 countries applied for the first Fellowship last year. The inaugural Fellows class is a diverse set of 20 community-minded rising stars who represent 11 countries and are radically altering the civic engagement landscape. The Fellows work in areas from criminal justice to refugee support to education. The cohort includes:

Erin Barnes, ioby

Veronica Crespin-Palmer, RISE Colorado

Celina de Sola, Glasswing International

Clarissa Delgado, Teach for the Philippines

Nedgine Paul Deroly, Teach for Haiti

Tiana Epps-Johnson, Center for Technology and Civic Life

Sasha Fisher, Spark Microgrants

Harry Grammer, New Earth

Zarlasht Halaimzai, Refugee Trauma Initiative

Ashley Hanson, PlaceBase Productions and the Department of Public Transformation

Preethi Herman, Foundation

Navdeep Kang, Mercy Health

Moussa Kondo, Accountability Lab Mali

Sandor Lederer, K-Monitor Association

Kalani Leifer, COOP

Melissa Malzkuhn, Motion Light Lab

Koketso Moeti,

Alex Smith, The Cares Family

Dominque Jordan Turner, Chicago Scholars

Keith Wattley, UnCommon Law

Applications close September 18.