T-Town Tacos' Wes Rose Selected for National Program



SAN FRANCISCO (October 6, 2016) - Today REDF announced its inaugural Social Enterprise for Jobs (SE4Jobs) Accelerator cohort of emerging leaders. The selected 18 participants, recognized from among more than 50 applicants across the nation, run double-bottom line businesses that support people facing the greatest barriers to employment. Program participants will apply skills to grow their social enterprises so they can impact more lives.

“Our Accelerator program is the first of its kind created to develop the future leaders of the social enterprise field on a national scale,” says Carla Javits, REDF CEO and president. “We want to strengthen the ability of social enterprise leaders to scale up their efforts to create jobs and provide support to people overcoming serious employment barriers like homelessness, incarceration, substance use and mental health struggles so they can be job-ready and achieve long-term employment success.”

Program participants will receive expert guidance on core business competencies and employee support programs, as well as the opportunity to build peer networks. The SE4Jobs Accelerator is an extension of REDF’s national Social Enterprise for Jobs network that was created in 2011 and is aligned with REDF’s national expansion and commitment to developing regional social enterprise ecosystems. The SE4Jobs Accelerator will be delivered in partnership with the Points of Light Civic Accelerator (CivicX), a national startup boot camp and investment fund for for-profit and nonprofit “civic ventures” that engage people to solve critical social issues. Since 2012, the Civic Accelerator has supported over 250 social entrepreneurs from across the country to scale their solutions to pressing social issues. 

“We are excited to expand our impact and bring our curriculum and learning to the REDF SE4Jobs Accelerator, as we partner to train and support leading innovators building sustainable solutions to workforce development,” said Ayesha Khanna, founder of the Points of Light Civic Accelerator.

Below is the list of the 18 participants in our first Social Enterprise for Jobs Accelerator cohort:

East Coast

·         AltheaBates, The Kitchen, Hartford, CT

·         Holly Shook, CUPs Coffeehouse, Baltimore, MD

·         Rae Gallagher, Flying Fruit, Baltimore, MD


·         Jeremy                Haines, Reclaim Detroit, Detroit, MI

·         Bethany Palm, EmergeWORKS, Minneapolis, MN

·         Michelle Horovitz, Appetite For Change, Minneapolis, MN

·         Thomas Adams, Better Futures Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

·         Linda Kramer, Lindy and Company, Dayton, OH


·         Wesley Rose, T-Town Tacos, Tulsa, OK

·         Betty Kirkland, Project Return, Nashville, TN

West Coast

·         Sabrina Mutukisna, The Town Kitchen, Oakland, CA

·         Dana Frasz, Food Shift, Oakland, CA

·         Frank Ricceri, Growing Grounds, San Luis Obispo, CA

·         Hunter Tanous, Corners Cafe and YU Green, Oakland, CA

·         Kevin Rodin, LA Towel & Linen Service, Los Angeles, CA

·         Chrissy Padilla Birkey, Good Soil Industries, Los Angeles, CA

·         Shana Lancaster, Mamacitas Café, Oakland, CA

·         Ricardo Moreno, Verde Landscape, Portland, OR


“Participating in the REDF SE4Jobs Accelerator means access to mentors, entrepreneurs and content experts who truly understand our business model and will propel us to the next stage of growth,” said Sabrina Mutukisna, founder and CEO of Town Kitchen. “The heft and experience of REDF and particularly of SE4Jobs represents, for us, a huge repository of experience and expertise, as well as a ready-made pool of peers,” added Bettie Kirkland, Executive Director of Project Return.

In addition to supporting growth and providing valuable peer assistance for participants, the program will help those most in need of another chance in life. "Being part of the REDF SE4Jobs Accelerator cohort is going to be a game changer for Good Soil Industries,” said Chrissy Padilla Birkey, Executive Director, Good Soil Industries. “In the last year we have seen the need for second chance jobs increase in our community, and need all the help we can get to meet the demand.”

The SE4Jobs Accelerator program will be offered annually with the next application period opening in mid-2017.

About REDF

REDF creates jobs and employment opportunities for people facing the greatest barriers to work – like young people who are disconnected from school or work, people who’ve been homeless or incarcerated, and those with mental health or substance use challenges. Founded in 1997 by George R. Roberts (KKR), REDF provides funding and business expertise to mission-driven organizations around the country to launch and grow social enterprises, which are businesses with a “double bottom line” that make money and reinvest their revenue to employ and support more people. For more information, follow REDF on Twitter at @REDFworks or visit http://redf.org/redf-se4jobs-accelerator/.