“Give us the Black Sheep. I want artists who are frustrated. I want the ones who have another way of doing things. Those nobody is listening to…” – Pixar Director Brad Bird
Inspired by trips to Pixar, a group of Bay Area entrepreneurs, writers, artists, and social entrepreneurs started the BLK SHP (black sheep) in 2012. BLK SHP is focused on empowering the artist within us all, recognizing no one unlocks their creativity alone. We convene BLK SHP to forge genuine relationships and community, establish collaborations to work on projects and initiatives (“Operations”) that can benefit society, all while having a hell of a lot of fun. Today, the BLK SHP community numbers over 3,000 creative thinkers and doers in the US and abroad.
The BLK SHP have started and scaled several social ventures. FUSE is one such example. FUSE, which has become one of the fastest growing social ventures in America, recruits entrepreneurial leaders to serve in local mayors offices for a year — in order to solve problems creatively, across sectors, and from the bottom up. Thanks to a great team, FUSE has become one of the fastest growing social ventures in America, growing from 5 to 16 fellows in 2015, and to 35 fellows in 2017, tackling everything from developing a strategy and plan to combat widespread urban blight in Los Angeles to developing responses to opioid epidemic in Allegheny County and Pittsburgh or to preparing a strategic plan to address climate change in New Orleans.
In another significant BLK SHP Operation, the BLK SHP were also part of the core team that founded #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration, and helped scale the idea into Europe. Today, GivingTuesday raises hundreds of millions of dollars in small philanthropic gifts annually.
Every once in a while, we also make angel investments in companies led by dynamic BLK SHP, with a social mission that parallels our own. GoldieBlox is one such company.