Our goal for #GivingTuesday (Nov. 28th) is to raise $60,000, enough to support one new Fellow committed to making permanent, positive changes for the people of Baltimore.

An OSIBaltimore Advisory Board member has agreed to match all #GivingTuesday donations dollar-for-dollar. Every dollar raised through this campaign will be worth two dollars to OSIBaltimore.


For the 20 days leading up to #Giving Tuesday (November 28th), we’re highlighting one of our incredible Fellows each day. Please see and share all of their stories on our Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram accounts!

We believe that early investment in courageous, innovative leaders can change the trajectory of Baltimore.

You can provide the fuel to launch these game-changing social entrepreneurs and help them turn their ideas into action.

Are you ready to be part of the future of Baltimore?

Featured Fellows

November 10: 2014 Fellow Van Brooks

2014 Fellow Van Brooks was a 16-year-old star football player at Loyola Blakefield High School when he broke his neck during a game and woke up at Shock Trauma, paralyzed from the neck down. Undeterred, he became a youth advocate and, with the help of his OSI Fellowship, founded Safe Alternative Foundation for Education (SAFE), which stresses the importance of having a “backup plan for life,” works with youth from Brooks’ Franklin Square neighborhood, and promotes education and life skills. To see the Impact Report featuring Van, click here.

November 11: 2000 Fellow Russell Wattenberg

2000 Fellow Russell Wattenberg used his fellowship to expand The Book Thing of Baltimore, which he founded, to establish a book distribution network system that provides used and remainder books to non- profit organizations and individuals throughout Baltimore City. To see the CBS News feature on Russell and The Book Thing, click here.

November 12: 2013 Fellow Lanaea Featherstone 

2013 Fellow Lanaea Featherstone used her Fellowship to help Baltimore Latinos increase technology skills and economic empowerment, work she continues with the The William & Lanaea C. Featherstone Foundation. To see the Impact Series featuring Lanaea, click here.

November 13: 2012 Fellow Lawrence Brown

2012 Fellow Lawrence Brown launched You’re the Quarterback: Gameplan for Life, a program that serves black men and families in central Baltimore by focusing on barriers to employment, increasing health insurance coverage, and providing support services to up to 150 men. To see Lawrence’s Baltimore Ethical Society lecture “Baltimore’s White L(ies) and Black Butterfly” from his click here.

November 14: 2010 Fellow Jessica Turral 

2010 Fellow Jessica Turral founded Hand in Hand Baltimore to reduce recidivism among boys charged as adults. To see Jessica’s talk about her fellowship, click here.

November 15: 2012 Fellow Anne Kotleba

2012 Fellow Anne Kotleba created Baltimore United Viewfinders, a youth-led arts program teaching young people in East Baltimore to use photography, video and other digital media to address local social justice issues. To see the Impact Series featuring Anne, click here.

November 16: 1999 Fellow David Miller 

1999 Fellow David Miller founded the Dare To Be King Project LLC to create curriculum and resources to support young men of color. To watch David talk about his fellowship, click here.

November 17: 2015 Fellow Chavi Rhodes

2015 Fellow Chavi Rhodes founded Baltimore Youth Kinetic Energy Collective – BYKE to give young people ages 12-17 a safe place to learn bicycle mechanics, practice respectful safe ridership, and build community. To see the Impact Series featuring Chavi, click here.

November 18: 1998 Fellow Terry Hickey

1998 Fellow Terry Hickey founded Community Law in Action (CLIA), which develops young people to be leaders by connecting them to opportunities to amplify their voices, cultivate their skills, and actively participate in the process of positive community change. To hear Terry talk about his fellowship, click here.

November 19: 2015 Fellow Menes Yahudah

2015 Fellow Menes Yahudah (Urban Foli) launched the Muze It Outreach Program, a musical and cultural education program that uses African drumming, performance, folklore, dance and arts to teach children and youth the historical and cultural traditions of the African and African-American diaspora.To see the Impact Series featuring Menes, click here.

November 20: 2004 Fellow Jay Wolfe Schlossberg-Cohen

2004 OSI Fellow Jay Wolf Schlossberg-Cohen launched the Rebuilding thru Art Project, and has continued to use art to empower young people and build community engagement ever since. To see Jay discuss his fellowship, click here.

November 21: 2016 Fellow Isa Olufemi

“Let’s grow!” You’ll hear this call throughout the halls of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School and all over Baltimore City whenever 2016 OSI-Community Fellow Isa Olufemi and the group he founded, the Poet Pride Run Club (PPRC), are keeping the pace. Olufemi founded the run club to combine physical fitness with school pride, personal growth, and college preparation. Learn more in this photo essay.

November 22: 2016 Fellow Gianna Rodriguez

2016 Fellow Gianna Rodriguez founded Baltimore Youth Arts, an artist-run, arts entrepreneurship and job readiness program for youth, ages 14-22,  to provide arts education to at-risk young people, with a focus on those who have contact with the justice system. The cover of the second issue of the Baltimore Beat features the incredible work of BYA. Check it out here.

November 23: 2017 Fellow Matthew Burke

2017 Community Fellow Matthew Burke started Baltimore Free Farm to distribute free, nutritious re-purposed food to food deserts. Check out this WBAL feature of Matt and his work.

November 24: 2009 Fellow Sarah Hemminger

2009 OSI Community Fellow Sarah Hemminger founded Thread, which leverages volunteers to provide comprehensive support to at-risk young people, as described in this 2016 New York Times series.

November 25: 1998 Fellow Lauren Ambramson

Lauren Abramson, who was one of OSI’s first Community Fellows in 1998, founded Community Conferencing Center (CCC), a pioneer in using restorative justice practices in Baltimore. To date CCC has facilitated more than 18,000 conferences referred from the criminal and juvenile justice systems, schools, and communities. The Center’s work was featured in our 2016 Impact Report.

November 26: 2015 Fellow Gregory Carpenter

2015 Community Fellow Gregory Carpenter, an ex-offender himself, founded a program that teaches ex-offenders baking and life skills and helps them find employment. Check out this City Paper feature on Gregory and 2AM Bakery.

November 27: 2015 Fellow Brion Emuobosa Layalihilmia 

2015 Fellow and spoken word artist Brion Emuobosa Layalihilmia (Lady Brion) works with DewMore Baltimore to teach spoken word workshops to young people in prisons and group homes. Here she is performing at OSI’s Solutions Summit last year.

November 28: #GivingTuesday

Check out this great video featuring four of our 2015 Fellows: Chavi RhodesGregory CarpenterBrian Gerardo, and Menes Yahudah. (Thanks to Tanya Garcia for the video.)

Posted in Baltimore Justice Report