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Turning Your Business Into a Force of Good

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Lauren McDanell
SEED SPOT, Vice President of Programs

Lauren McDanell, VP of Programs at SEED SPOT, leads the organization's program practice, designing and optimizing programs for venture and entrepreneur impact outcomes. Lauren leads SEED SPOT's curriculum methodology, trains and leads the program delivery team, and oversees venture and alumni outcomes. Leveraging over a decade of "rolling up her sleeves" in and alongside VC-backed startups, Lauren brings together entrepreneurship education, community networks of mentors, advisors, and capital partners, and world class resources to empower founders to launch, grow, and scale their social impact ventures. Lauren specializes in impact-driven product and service development, market validation, and achieving early traction. Her fun, upbeat training style encourages experimentation, collaboration, and purposeful action that drives measurable results.

Nancy Payne
NanPayne Advisory, Advisor, Mentor & Communicator

Nancy Payne supports early-to-mid stage entrepreneurs and organizations to develop as leaders, establish their reputation, diagnose pain points, and communicate more effectively about the work they do. She mentors through WeWork Labs and SEED SPOT, and she serves on the strategic advisory board of Thought Partnerships, a startup non-profit organization. Nancy helps build businesses, reputations and programs, including those driving social impact and changing behaviors. Her experience includes: -COO of PeaceTech Lab, where she oversaw daily operations and programs using media, technology and data innovations for peacebuilding in complex conflicts.

Managing director for communications in the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation, which mobilizes private capital to tackle development challenges in emerging markets and post-conflict countries. -Senior partner and SVP of FleishmanHillard International, including general manager at FH-Hong Kong and co-lead of the firm’s largest digital communication team in Washington, DC. Nancy started her career in broadcast news as a reporter and photographer. She holds a M.A. from American University’s School of International Service, and a B.A. from the University of Nebraska. She has also taught at Johns Hopkins University and Georgetown University.

Zach Leverenz

Zach Leverenz is the CEO of SEED SPOT, a national nonprofit on a mission to educate, accelerate, and invest in diverse, impact-entrepreneurs.

Previously, Zach served as Founder and CEO of EveryoneOn, a national nonprofit that creates social and economic opportunity by connecting low-income families to affordable internet service, computers, and free digital skills training. To date, EveryoneOn has connected 900,000 low-income students, adults, seniors, and veterans from across 48 states and has provided them with improved access to best-in-class educational tools, digital skills training, and essential financial and governmental services.

Zach also served as the CEO of Middle East Entrepreneurs of Tomorrow (MEET), a MIT-based computer science and entrepreneurship organization. He began his career as managing director at PeacePlayers International, where he led programs and new expansions in Northern Ireland, South Africa, Cyprus, and New Orleans.

Zach is a graduate of Dickinson College and the Harvard Graduate School of Education and was a Reynolds Fellow in Social Entrepreneurship at the Harvard Center for Public Leadership.

Ready to make a real impact through your work? Join SEED SPOT for a virtual workshop on optimizing your social impact and raising impact investment. In this interactive workshop you will utilize the Impact Entrepreneurship Framework for structuring your business model around social impact and discover strategies for pursuing impact investment.