Posted by: Academy of Achievement | 08/05/2013

Dory-head-shotDory Gannes, Class of 2011
Catherine B. Reynolds Foundation Fellow, United Nations’ Girl Up

During my tenure as a Reynolds Fellow at Harvard, I began working with Girl Up, a campaign of the United Nations Foundation that provides a platform for youth to raise awareness, advocacy and funds for some of the world’s hardest-to-reach adolescent girls. After graduation, I left Boston and moved to Washington, D.C. to join the campaign full-time. During the next year and a half, I developed the campaign’s grassroots engagement strategy and led the campaign’s signature Teen Advisor program and Unite for Girls Tour event series. The movement is now 330,000 constituents strong and has nearly 400 Girl Up Clubs in 35 countries around the world. In my current role, I work with AT&T, Dell, Intel, Girl Rising and others within the private, public and NGO sectors to design and manage innovative partnerships. Through such partnerships, Girl Up is able to build a stronger global constituency, deepen their domestic programs and fund efforts to better the lives of girls in countries such as Guatemala and Ethiopia.

I am still involved with The Olevolos Project, a nonprofit I established in 2007 to meet the educational needs of disadvantaged children in rural Tanzania. We have built a donor and support network that has raised more than $500,000; more than 60 people have joined me on international service trips to Tanzania. I return annually to visit with students and staff while monitoring and evaluating progress.

Thinking back on my Reynolds Fellowship experience, I am most thankful for the network of friends and partners I acquired. Jen Firneno with the Center for Public Leadership has been a wonderful mentor and advocate for me. I am regularly in touch with Reynolds Fellows; I see them whenever I’m able and we exchange emails throughout the year. As I am now living in Washington, I look forward to connecting with Wayne and Catherine Reynolds on a more frequent basis. Given the impact they have had on my life and the opportunities they have enabled, I would be happy to assist them in any way I could be helpful.

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