2011 Grant Recipients
Palo Alto Institute has given grants to the following innovative organizations.
Miralan Productions is the film company that produced Something Ventured, a documentary that shares the entertaining stories of the early investors behind companies like Apple, Intel and Cisco that catalyzed a revolution in both business and technology. Miralan was founded by Paul Holland, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist with Foundation Capital and Molly Davis, a founding partner with Rainmaker Communications. PAI gave Miralan a grant of $2,000.00 to produce an educational package for Something Ventured, which will include a study guide to assist professors and students of business, engineering and sciences with key topics like entrepreneurialism, innovation, risk and leadership. With this educational grant, PAI hopes to encourage would-be entrepreneurs to push past conventional boundaries to pursue innovative projects.
2010 Grant Recipients
EURORDIS (RARE DISEASES EUROPE)
EURORDIS is a patient-driven alliance of patient organizations and individuals active in the field of rare diseases. An estimated 30 million Europeans suffer from a rare disease (defined in the EU as a disease that affects fewer than 1 in 2,000 people). With more than 400 member organizations from 44 nations, EURORDIS works to build a strong community of patient organizations and people living with rare diseases, to be their voice at the European level, and to fight against the impact of rare diseases on their lives.
Backlight Media - Fearless Genius
Backlight Media Foundation was organized to inspire young people to explore math, science and engineering by producing educational films, books and other media. PAI provided a grant to Backlight Media Foundation to help fund its flagship documentary “Fearless Genius” based on Doug Menuez’ extensive photographic memoir of 1980s-1990s Silicon Valley. Menuez took his landmark photographs at a time when other great photographers trended toward shooting National Geographic-style wildlife and colorful landscapes. PAI’s grant recognizes that Menuez not only had the foresight to see that history was being made, but had the courage to make the most of his unprecedented access to Bay Area pioneers.
Bay Area Theater Sports (BATS)
BATS is an award winning, long-running improv theater and school in San Francisco, California. The BATS School offers improv classes designed for students at all levels from beginning to advanced. PAI’s enthusiasm for BATS arose out of the question of why we teach our children algebra or physics, but fail to teach them humor, a vital aspect of our lives. PAI provided a grant to BATS to fund their educational initiatives, including improv training through their On-The-Go program. PAI and BATS’ Chris Sams are collaborating on an exploration of the art and science of being funny.
National Organization for Rare Diseases, Inc. (NORD)
NORD is a coalition of health care organizations dedicated to identification, treatment and cure of rare diseases (those that affect fewer than 200,000 people in the United States). Rare diseases aren’t as rare as you might think-- over 6000 rare disorders affect a total of approximately 25 million Americans. Most of these patients would not have a voice, but for the education, advocacy, research and service given by NORD.
Recognizing that genetics are at the forefront of science, the Genetic Alliance advocates for the translation of genetics research into good services and decision-making. The Genetic Alliance convenes stakeholders as diverse as disease-specific advocacy organizations, universities, companies, government agencies and policy organizations in an effort to include all perspectives – including the average American’s – in an expanding field that affects us all. PAI believes that the efforts of Genetic Alliance will dramatically improve the face of health-care.
2009 Grant Recipients
Bay Area Theater Sports (BATS)
BATS is an award winning, long-running improv theater and school in San Francisco, California. The BATS School offers improv classes designed for students at all levels from beginning to advanced. PAI’s enthusiasm for BATS arose out of the question of why we teach our children algebra or physics, but fail to teach them humor, a vital aspect of our lives. PAI provided a grant to BATS to fund their educational initiatives, including improv training through their On-The-Go program. Together PAI and BATS’ Chris Sams are collaborating on an exploration of the art and science of being funny.
Stanford Institute of Design (d.School)
The Stanford d.school is a program devoted to teaching design thinking in a human-centered way to future innovators. Stanford students and faculty in engineering, medicine, business, the humanities, and education convene in project-based classes that create rich learning experiences and produce results. The design thinking taught at the d.school is making a positive impact on the world through the development of products like a $26 sleeping-bag-like device to keep premature and low-birth-weight babies warm when traditional incubators are not an option. The d school is also working on improving processes at small and large companies by focusing on the end user. PAI awarded a grant to the d.school because the design-thinking taught at the d.school can be applied to improve individual and life decisions.