Skip to main content

Social Innovation Accelerator

The Social Innovation Accelerator, in collaboration with Accenture, invests human, social and financial capital in experimentation-, growth- and mature-stage organizations in the social innovation sector. Through the program, United Way enables social entrepreneurs to build capacity, scale and expand their ventures in order to drive impact in education, income and health in North Texas.

At United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, we recognize that getting a new social venture off the ground can be incredibly challenging. The Social Innovation Accelerator is just one of the ways we support social innovators, enabling new or existing nonprofit and for-profit organizations to access the resources and connections they need to scale their ventures and achieve success.

Results & Impact

  • 345,500+

    neighbors
    served by Accelerator fellows since 2013
  • $520,000

    in seed funding
    invested through the Accelerator and The Pitch annually
  • 1,500

    hours
    of mentoring and coaching provided to Accelerator fellows each year

    345,500+

    neighbors
    served by Accelerator fellows since 2013

    $520,000

    in seed funding
    invested through the Accelerator and The Pitch annually

    1,500

    hours
    of mentoring and coaching provided to Accelerator fellows each year

    Our Approach

    Since 2013, this innovative program has enabled us to partner with local social entrepreneurs who are meeting unmet needs in the areas of education, income and health in our community. We identify innovative ideas that are poised to improve North Texas, and then we provide support in three key areas:

    Financial Capital

    Seed funding, which is linked to the completion of program milestones, ensures each organization can quickly grow its impact.

    Human Capital

    Expert instruction and personalized mentoring from local business experts empowers fellows to refine their business plans and create a roadmap for growth.

    Social Capital

    Access to United Way’s community connections and credibility allows fellows to increase their visibility and benefit from previously untapped resources.

    Accelerator Alumni

    2023

    2022

    2021

    2020

    2018

    2017

    2016

    2015

    2014

    Our Mentors

    Shawn Leamon

    Social Innovation Lab Committee Chair

    Jim Adams

    Advisor to Family Offices and Families

    Tolu Akinjayeju

    Santander

    George Baker

    ParkHub  

    Laura Baldwin

    Golden Seeds

    Lane Conner

    Fuzse  

    Grace Cook

    Steven Dennis

    SageBerry Consulting, Forbes  

    Jamika Doakes

    AT&T 

    Jason Dyke

    Carson’s Village  

    Gwen Echols

    Southwest Angel Investing Network, KERA  

    David Evans

    Sentiero Ventures, Geode Software 

    David Ezell

    Yahoo!

    Renee George

    Board Member/ Community Volunteer

    Aaron Gougis

    Capital Impact Partners

    Rick Jackson

    ForgeRock, Bizaccelerator  

    Kyle Kraft

    Accenture  

    Hayley Krahl

    Bank of Texas

    Bob Kraut

    EDO, YEXT, Tiff’s Treats  

    Michael Martin

    MM Solar Advisory 

    Ty McAden

    Accenture  

    Emily Perlmeter

    Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas

    Cory Ritthaler

    Deloitte

    Scott Schoenvogel

    ACAP Health

    Van Sheets

    Board Member/ Advisor

    Damodar Shenoy

    William Smith

    PNC Bank

    Kimberly Snopik

    Michael Thomas

    My Possibilities 

    Nick Vilmain

    Santander

    Amber Wagenknecht

    Deloitte

    JW Washington

    Toyota

    John Watson

    BearCom (retired)  

    Shan Zaidi

    VF Partners 

    The Pitch

    Each year, the Social Innovation Accelerator program culminates in The Pitch, our live competition where social entrepreneurs vie for game-changing funding in front of a panel of judges and a live audience.

    The Social Innovation Accelerator is supported by:

    • Accenture    •  
    • AT&T   •  
    • PNC   •  
    • Santander   •  
    • The Eugene McDermott Foundation   •  
    • The Kleinert Family   •  
    • The Moozie Family Foundation   •  
    • Hoglund Foundation   •  
    • Toyota Motor North America    •  
    • Sara and Gary Ahr   •  
    • Capital One Bank   •  
    • Carol and Kevin March

    Invest in 
    Lasting Change

    Together, we can improve access to education, income and health so all North Texans can thrive.

    Explore Our Other Programs

    Social innovation is at the heart of the work we do 365 days a year. Our programs provide financial, human and social capital to help identify, develop and grow social ventures that are implementing new and innovative solutions to the most urgent challenges facing North Texas in education, income and health.