Why we chose Jake as a Fellow
Jake grew up on a small farm in West Virginia, attended the US Naval Academy, and served as a Marine Special Operations Platoon Commander through two combat tours in Iraq. He saw firsthand the direct connection between poverty and conflict and founded Nuru to do something about it. He now leads a platoon of private-sector converts, Peace Corps survivors and a highly disciplined stateside team, with core supporters around the globe.
Over a billion people trapped in extreme poverty don't have access to an increasing number of successful, proven solutions; and even when they do, those solutions are rarely applied in the same place at the same time. Jake founded Nuru in 2008 to deliver holistic development – capturing synergies by bringing health, livelihood, education, and other interventions together – for the poorest in Africa. His idea was to apply only proven, scalable solutions, to focus on the development of capable local leadership, and find ways to make the whole effort pay for itself. Nuru is a general contractor of poverty solutions, that brings the best of proven, scalable solutions together to capture the mutually beneficial relationship between them.