Jesse Stern is the Founder of KoreVoices, a global community united in an effort to make the world a better place through sharing stories, listening, and offering each other advice. See what our newest Champion for Good had to say about finding your passion and being open to change.
Question: How have you worked with the Ad Council? What campaign(s) have you supported and what was the project you worked on with us?
Jesse Stern: I have been amazingly fortunate to work with the Ad Council on the Because Of You anti-bullying campaign. Bullying is a truly devastating reality that many people experience on a daily basis, and this campaign was authentic, heartfelt and effective.
Q: Social good ads pull at our heartstrings. What social good ad has made you cry or stand up and cheer?
JS: The Truth About Opioids campaign that aims to fight the ongoing opioid crisis is remarkable. The heartbreaking videos and incredibly well-done website help to both show the reality of how serious the problem is, and how devastating it has been in people’s lives.
Q: How do you or your team integrate social good into your work, or how do you think your brand is making the world a better place?
JS: At KoreVoices, we are harnessing the power of social media to provide a positive inclusive community committed to helping one another through their struggles – including issues of domestic violence, mental health, LGBTQ acceptance and bullying.
Q: What was the greatest piece of advice someone gave you, and how did it end up helping you?
JS: Find your passion and be persistent. I have found that the most rewarding accomplishments take commitment, effort and unwavering determination. It’s important to push forward when others might give up.
Q: If you were giving a commencement speech to this year’s college graduates, what would you want them to know?
JS: Be curious. Ask questions. Embrace change. Diversify your skill set, be ready and excited to pivot. As technology is changing how entire industries operate, it’s important to be nimble and able to adapt.
Q: How has your organization improved or innovated the digital landscape in the last year?
JS: KoreVoices was started in response to the rise of young people reporting feelings of isolation, despair and depression. In order to reach these young people who need education, support and guidance, we need to ﬁnd them where they are – on social media. We build positive safe environments where the community listens to and helps one another.
Q: What value(s) of your organization are you most proud of?
JS: Through the power of personal storytelling, we have created a global community that is compassionate and caring towards one another.
Q: You’re planning a “Change the World” dinner party and you can invite anyone (living, dead or fictional). Who are three people on your list?
JS: Studs Terkel, Jacob Riis, and Louis Theroux because at different times in history they each helped create change by telling other people’s stories.
Q: In 40 years, what will people be nostalgic for?
JS: With the rapid rise of self-driving cars, I think in 40 years people will be telling their kids about how they used to drive a car by themselves.