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Award to a USA, Canada, or International Individual to Recognize Social Activism Activities

2022 Gleitsman International Activist Award


GrantWatch ID#

Funding Source
Harvard Kennedy School - Center for Public Leadership
Array ( [0] => Guam (USA); [1] => Puerto Rico (USA); [2] => Virgin Islands (USA); [3] => Northern Mariana Islands (USA); )

Geographic Focus
USA Territories: Guam (USA);   Puerto Rico (USA);   Virgin Islands (USA);   Northern Mariana Islands (USA);
USA Compact Free Associations:The Federated States of Micronesia (USA)   Marshall Islands (USA)   Republic of Palau (USA)
International, Israel and Canada.

Important Dates
Deadline: 03/04/22 11:59 PM EST Save

Grant Description
Award to a USA, Canada, or International individual activist and changemaker whose work outside the United States has significantly improved peoples’ lives and changed communities for the better. Eligible applicants are those leaders that have achieved results, confronted the status quo, have innovative ideas about public policy, and have demonstrated recent accomplishments.

An accomplished social activist leads others to solve social problems. Specifically, the activist:

  • Confronts the Status Quo:
    • Challenges injustice: the contradiction between experience of the world as it is and as it ought to be.
    • Organizes those who experience injustice to join with one another to challenge the individuals, organizations, or institutions respondible.
    • Builds relationships among those who need change through which they can discern a common problem, devise shared solutions, and act on them.
    • Develops a public narrative as to why urgent change is needed, what is at stake, and for whom.
    • Devises strategy through which those who need the change can become authors of the change they need by learning to use their own resources to create the power to achieve the change.
  • Innovates to Confront a Public Policy Dilemma
    • By developing a new product, process, method or idea
    • By building local capacity, or
    • By influencing others to take action
  • Is a Leader
    • Develops the leadership needed to build the relationship, tell the story, devise the strategy, and put it into action.
    • By building connections among multiple constituencies, and
    • By responding and adapting to changing circumstances.
  • Achieves Results
    • Of significant breadth or depth
    • That have a positive social impact
    • That mobilize local resources, with an emphasis on sustainability, and
    • The impact of which is documented and verifiable
  • Timeliness
    • Some of the primary accomplishments for which the social activist is being considered should have occurred ideally within the last 18 months.
    • In most cases, leaders should be incumbents (i.e. still in their position of leadership) at the time of their selection.


  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria
Individual social activists working outside the United States are eligible.
Nominations may be for one activist or a team of two.

Pre-Application Information
Nomination Deadline: March 4, 2022, 11:59 PM EST

The Gleitsman International Activist Award is given biennially (alternating with the Citizen Activist Award).

Applicants can expect a confirmation email on or about March 9, 2022.

Number of Grants

Estimated Size of Grant
The winner of the Gleitsman Activist Award receives a $150,000 prize and a specially commissioned sculpture designed by Maya Lin, the creator of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC and the Civil Rights Memorial in Montgomery, AL. The awardee is honored at a ceremony and dinner on or near the Harvard University campus.

Contact Information
Nomination form:

If you have any questions about the nomination process, please email

Mailing Address
Center for Public Leadership
Harvard Kennedy School
79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138

p: 617-496-8866
f: 617-496-3337

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