Innovate is the biweekly podcast featuring dialogue with international cultural leaders, social entrepreneurs and leading scholars engaged in transformative action and creative collaboration.
Hosted by David Castro, Robert Rimm and Phillip Thomas, Innovate is produced by Arch Street Press in collaboration with Ashoka, Innovators for the Public, the Kellogg Fellows Leadership Alliance and the Philadelphia Social Innovations Journal. Originating from a shared vision with Public Radio Exchange (PRX), Innovate is a content-driven platform on which we broadcast interviews from our podcast series. Innovate gives public voice to key leaders in the nonprofit and for-profit (corporate social responsibility) sectors, academia, journalism and social entrepreneurship.
David Castro is the founder and CEO of the Institute for Leadership Education, Advancement and Development, a training program for community-leadership development that has served several thousand emerging leaders and led to the formation of an accredited associate’s degree in leadership. In 1993, following a successful career both in private practice and as a Philadelphia assistant district attorney, David was awarded a Kellogg Foundation National Leadership Program Fellowship, for which he studied community leadership and its relation to improving quality of life. Based upon this work, together with his mentor and colleague Lynne Abraham, in 1995 David founded I-LEAD, Inc. In 2002 David was awarded an Eisenhower Fellowship, which he used to study leadership and its impact on economic and community development in Turkey. In 2009, in recognition of his work in community leadership and education, he was named an Ashoka Fellow by the Ashoka Global Funds for Social Change. Ashoka is an international community of the world’s leading social entrepreneurs. David is a widely engaged teacher, speaker and writer, is the author of Genership: Beyond Leadership Toward Liberating the Creative Soul, and is a graduate of Haverford College and the University of Pennsylvania Law School.
Robert Rimm has been the managing editor of Arch Street Press since 2010. His key interests include education, social entrepreneurship, the environment, human rights, and art and culture. He is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and founder of 88keys.com, which provides communications services for clients within the nonprofit, arts and education communities in the United States, Europe and Russia. Fluent in French and Russian, he is a widely published author and professional member of the Authors Guild, PEN America and the American Society of Journalists and Authors. He enjoys travel, running, tennis, reading and volunteering for crucial social causes. Among his books is Better to Speak of It: Fostering Relationships & Results through Creativity, focusing on core management and personal values in collaboration with Clive Gillinson, executive and artistic director of Carnegie Hall, and Empathy: Social Visionaries Putting Creativity into Action (November 2018) that features accomplished and resourceful individuals who have founded and/or lead some of the world’s largest and most impactful nonprofit and educational organizations.
Phillip Thomas is Vice President for Higher Education at I-LEAD. He responsible for directing and supervising the higher education team to identify, establish, prepare, and operate new ACE (Achieving College Education) Program delivery sites, and designing, implementing, and evaluating a training and quality assurance process for adjunct faculty members. Phillip has also had substantial experience as an entrepreneur, helping technology companies grow by helping them close large multiple-year contracts in the millions of dollars. Recently, he helped a mobile HealthIT start-up that builds patient engagement in the health-care space, by helping doctors monetize the interactions between patient visits. Phillip has also served as a consultant for the National Community Capital Association on Native American Tribes projects, organized conference that brought together religious groups to initiate economic development projects. He has also served on several non-profit boards including Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia, which unites Muslim, Christian, and Jewish faith organizations in promoting interfaith understanding and program collaboration, and the IndUS Forum, that works towards empowering and enabling Indian-Americans to become catalysts for meaningful change, in India and the United States.