About Our Chapter
Since 2012, LA+Acumen has been committed to supporting Acumen’s mission to create a world beyond poverty. We are a self-organized, volunteer-led group by individuals who are working to educate our local community about social enterprise and patient capital that emphasize both social and financial returns. We also fundraise to support Acumen’s work. We are part of a global community of changemakers and we have the opportunity to connect with other like-minded individuals involved in Acumen’s work on monthly calls and at an annual chapter conference. It’s been amazing that individuals have been motivated to stay involved, which speaks to the strength and inspiration behind Acumen’s work. We hope you will join us as LA+Acumen hosts events, educates others on Acumen’s mission and continues to build support in Los Angeles.
Meet the team
Nikki has been passionate about finding new ways of addressing global challenges since her first trip to Afghanistan in 2009. Working as an international development professional for six years brought to light some of the biggest issues with traditional aid models, inspiring her to get an MBA and explore new avenues of social innovation. Nikki previously served as an advisor to USAID’s Office of Science and Technology designing challenges to source new solutions for global problems such as health, education, citizen engagement, and energy. Currently she is working on the Strategy team at NationBuilder helping organizations rethink their approach to community engagement and mobilization to enact change. In her spare time she loves to travel, discover the latest dance shows, and relearn what it means to be a California girl after years of being away from her home town of San Diego. You can find her @nikkisbatchelor.
Rebecca graduated from Penn State with a degree in Hospitality Management, which led her to coordinate elaborate platinum weddings for Exquisite Events and start her own baking business called Becca Biscotti. Looking for deeper purpose, Rebecca joined the United States Peace Corps and served as a sustainable livelihoods volunteer and English teacher. She soon discovered how vital education is to the success of every individual and community. Having discovered a passion for teaching, yet being an entrepreneur at heart, she went on to complete her Master’s in Social Entrepreneurship from the USC Marshall School of Business. Most recently, Rebecca has launched Knit Marketing, which is a digital marketing company that recruits talent from high schools in South LA. Rebecca also works for Franklin Educational Services as the director of education. For fun, she likes to mountain bike, travel, and bake. You can reach her at email@example.com or @happylifeb.
Carolina is dedicated to social impact work that integrates health and education to address social disparities and advance community wellbeing both domestically and internationally. She has previously worked with programs focused on education for underserved cancer patients, community nutrition, and environmental health. Carolina is currently working at Planet Water Foundation, an organization dedicated to helping communities access clean, safe water and hygiene education programs across Asia and Latin America. Carolina received her Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Sciences and Spanish from the University of Connecticut and more recently completed her Master’s in Public Health at Columbia University focusing on Health Promotion. Originally from a small town in Connecticut, Carolina has been fortunate to live in New York, San Francisco, and is now enjoying her time exploring Los Angeles. In her spare time, she loves anything to do with food, spending time outdoors, and traveling.
Rebecca is passionate about deploying business-driven solutions to address social and environmental needs. Her career has taken her from New York to Kenya and spanned nonprofit management and financial services, but she is very happy that it has finally brought her back to LA, where she grew up. Rebecca has an MBA from the USC Marshall School of Business and currently works in investment management. In her spare time, she loves to take advantage of LA’s sunshine on hikes or at the beach and its endless offerings of food, arts and culture.
Elizabeth first learned about Acumen and the social impact world when she heard Acumen’s Founder and CEO, Jacqueline Novogratz speak at UCLA several years ago. She was inspired that night to do what she could to help in Acumen’s work to see the end of poverty in our lifetime. Elizabeth currently co-heads the LA+Acumen Impact Circle, a giving circle initiative originating in the LA+Acumen chapter. She holds a B.A. in Mass Communications from UCLA and is a professional actor on stage, film, TV, commercials and voiceovers. In her spare time, she loves to pick far flung places to travel, cook vegetarian meals and sing a mean karaoke.
Vineet is originally from London and lived in Detroit, Fort Wayne, and Portland prior to arriving in sunny Los Angeles. He graduated from USC with a degree in Economics and Psychology and currently works at Analysis Group, an economic consulting firm. Within social impact, Vineet’s particular areas of interest are education, microfinance, infrastructure development, and business development. In his spare time, Vineet enjoys travel, table tennis, and strategic board games. He is literally always up for a game of Risk or Settlers of Catan.
Amanda Yiu has been part of LA+Acumen Chapter since 2013. Prior to moving to Los Angeles, she grew up in Toronto and lived in Vancouver. Amanda is currently a Management Consultant with the Innovation & Digital Services (IDS) practice at Capgemini. In growing her passion for social impact and philanthropy, Amanda founded Givfolio, a charitable giving platform that connects donors to curated causes in a radically transparent and convenient way. She currently sits on two non-profit boards, including The Library Project, a non-profit that donates libraries and books to rural schools in China and Southeast Asia. Amanda also organized LA+Acumen’s first CATALYST Case Challenge for students and raised funds to invest in ideas that are changing the way the world tackles poverty. She is a foodie and adventurer at heart, traveling to over 30 countries to date.