LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – March 6, 2019 – An extraordinary gift from philanthropist-entrepreneur Ryan D. “Jume” Jumonville of United Networks of America has established the “Gamechangers Laboratory,” a groundbreaking initiative from the Wallace Center at Winrock International.
Through collaborations and convenings, the Gamechangers Laboratory will catalyze breakthrough ideas, strategies and innovations in community-based food systems as they expand access to good food. The initiative will leverage the power of the Food Systems Leadership Network (FSLN), a fast-growing group of almost 2,000 food systems leaders from all 50 states supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
“This is a critical time for food security in America,” Jumonville said. “I believe deeply in the power of community and the importance of food access for all people. I am proud to support the creation of the Gamechangers Laboratory as part of my Giving Pledge and to encourage other donors to support this incredibly innovative effort.”
In this inaugural year, the Gamechangers Laboratory will award grants and technical support to community-based leaders, organizations and multidisciplinary teams working to address intractable obstacles to sustainable, community-based food systems. The initiative will provide participants with space, time and financial resources to design, incubate and pilot innovative approaches to advance food systems change.
“We are deeply honored to announce this incredible gift from Mr. Jumonville,” said Rodney Ferguson, CEO of Winrock International. “His passion for creating a world where no child is hungry aligns perfectly with the missions of Winrock International and the Wallace Center. We are humbled by his willingness to break new ground with us and grateful to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for their continued support of the Food Systems Leadership Network, on which this effort will flourish.”
“We recognize that despite strong collective efforts, there are still great barriers to solving the underlying drivers of food insecurity, inequity and poverty,” said program officer Susan Schempf. “Just as innovative high-tech startup leaders need time to examine the systems they seek to shift, consider the bigger picture, and get creative in their problem-solving, so too do community food systems leaders. The Gamechangers Lab will provide that opportunity.”
ABOUT RYAN D. JUMONVILLE
Ryan D. “Jume” Jumonville is a billionaire philanthropist and entrepreneur who joined the Giving Pledge in February 2019. Jumonville’s company, United Networks of America, is a member of the Children’s Miracle Network “Miracle Million Club.” While much of his focus has been on children’s healthcare, he has provided significant support to a wide variety of causes around the world.
ABOUT THE WALLACE CENTER
The Wallace Center at Winrock International develops partnerships, pilots new ideas and advances solutions to strengthen communities through resilient farming and food systems.
ABOUT THE FOOD SYSTEMS LEADERSHIP NETWORK
The Food Systems Leadership Network is a national community of practice to support leaders and staff of nonprofit, community-based organizations working on food systems change. You can join and participate in the Network, and learn more on the Community-Based Food Systems page.
ABOUT THE W.K. KELLOGG FOUNDATION
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal entrepreneur Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life. The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit www.wkkf.org.
ABOUT WINROCK INTERNATIONAL
Winrock International is a recognized leader in U.S. and international development with a focus on social, agricultural and environmental issues. Inspired by its namesake, Winthrop Rockefeller, Winrock combines scientific and technical expertise with entrepreneurial innovation to deliver market-based solutions that improve lives around the world. Winrock’s mission is to empower the disadvantaged, increase economic opportunity and sustain natural resources across the globe.