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Morgan Stanley and Centri Tech Foundation Announce Inaugural Winners of the Social Justice Innovation Awards

Five leading organizations and their founders developing breakthrough social innovations will each receive a $250,000 award and participate in a new program to advance systemic solutions to complex social justice issues.

  • With support from Morgan Stanley, national nonprofit Centri Tech Foundation has selected five winners from across the United States, each taking an innovative approach to promoting social justice and inclusive economic opportunity.
  • Each of the award winners will receive a $250,000 award and bespoke support aimed at accelerating their ability to scale their solution and drive systemic change.
  • Awardees will take part in a nine-month-long collaborative program designed to support transformative systems-level solutions to some of America’s most complex social justice issues.

Morgan Stanley, in partnership with Centri Tech Foundation, today announced the inaugural winners of the Social Justice Innovation Awards. This new strategic initiative aims to advance social and racial justice and help drive greater inclusive economic opportunity. The five awardees will participate in a nine-month-long partnership with Centri Tech Foundation, which kicks off this week in Washington, DC. As part of a facilitated cohort experience modeled after the Morgan Stanley Sustainable Solutions Collaborative, each awardee will receive leadership coaching, support for tech-enabled strategies and access to professional networks. Each organization will also be awarded $250,000 to support the development and scaling of their solution.

“We are excited to announce the inaugural Social Justice Innovation Award winners,” said Rey Ramsey, Chairman of Centri Tech Foundation. “These visionary leaders are advancing solutions that put people and communities first. Their bold ideas bring to bear our mission of leveraging technology to accelerate systems change and promote shared prosperity.”

“We are thrilled to congratulate the winners of the inaugural Social Justice Innovation Awards – an impressive cohort of innovators already addressing complex social issues at a systemic level,” said Susan Reid, Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion and Head of Institute for Inclusion at Morgan Stanley. “We look forward to seeing how this investment will better empower their work and enact change within the communities they serve and beyond.”

“Tackling complex sustainability challenges requires creative thinking, innovative ideas and unique partnerships, and we are proud to work with Centri Tech Foundation on their Social Justice Innovation Awards,” said Matthew Slovik, Head of Global Sustainable Finance at Morgan Stanley.

Each winner of the Social Justice Innovation Awards was selected for developing a breakthrough concept aimed at solving critical social justice challenges. The five inaugural award winners represent a diverse group of organizations, backgrounds and social issues:

  • FlikshopVR, led by Marcus Bullock, deploys a new VR approach to workforce development in correctional facilities throughout the country, providing essential entrepreneurial and business skills that will reduce recidivism by expanding post-incarceration employment opportunities.
  • HomeGrown StL, led by Dr. Sean Joe, a university-based, regional initiative in St. Louis, MO, improves the well-being and upward mobility of Black boys and young men through life coaching, connecting Black males to essential services and democratizing access to care.
  • Kalia Health, led by Happy Ghosh, aims to improve maternal health outcomes by developing healthcare technologies for use in low-resource settings in the United States. This healthcare justice startup’s KAL-PDx detects complications like preeclampsia and eclampsia early with a home-based test.
  • Parity, led by Bree Jones, an equitable development company in Baltimore, MD, acquires and rehabilitates vacant and abandoned properties in distressed neighborhoods to create affordable homeownership opportunities. Parity aims to streamline how cities address hyper-vacancy while increasing equitable and collective access to homeownership.
  • THRIVE!, led by Omolara Fatiregun, partners with government officials and residents to co-construct a tangible social justice agenda and recommend budget-neutral solutions that enhance the budget cycle to focus on equity and economic mobility. Their software analyzes public spending on equity measures that have scientific evidence of disrupting cycles of poverty, centering low-income people and communities of color.

“Communities across the country are facing unprecedented challenges, as are the organizations and social impact leaders working to help them. Centri Tech Foundation is proud to support the winners of the Social Justice Innovation Awards with the resources and opportunities needed to effect transformative change,” said Marta Urquilla, President of Centri Tech Foundation.

To identify the winners, Centri Tech Foundation and Morgan Stanley engaged a broad and diverse network of social justice experts and practitioners from across the United States working on a variety of issue areas to submit nominations for consideration. The program received nearly 200 highly qualified nominations and carried out a rigorous selection process to identify the innovations with the greatest potential for systemic impact that would also benefit from participation in a collaborative learning experience with the other award winners.

About Morgan Stanley

Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is a leading global financial services firm providing a wide range of investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in 41 countries, the Firm’s employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. For further information about Morgan Stanley, please visit

About Centri Tech Foundation

Centri Tech Foundation (CTF), along with a network of community development partners, seeks to connect low-income people to high-quality connectivity in the home and to resources that improve economic, health and livelihood outcomes in the digital economy. We believe digital advancement is a civil right. To achieve a sustainable future, one where everyone can fulfill their aspirations and thrive, requires an inclusive digital economy. Learn more at and follow @centritechfdn on social media.


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