Alfa DemmellashHawthorne Valley is pleased to announce that Alfa Demmellash, co-founder and CEO of Rising Tide Capital, has joined its Board of Trustees.

“I am so inspired by Alfa and am moved by her vision and commitment to create a regenerative, resilient and just economy that serves all,” says Martin Ping, Hawthorne Valley Executive Director. “Her work to refocus capital and empower under-resourced entrepreneurs contributes to community well being and a more equitable financial system. We enthusiastically welcome Alfa to the board, and look forward to her wisdom, expertise, and spirited good will as we continue to address the needs of our times.”

Alfa joins a stellar board that includes Board President Tom James who served 12 years as Provost, Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Columbia University’s Teachers College; Treasurer Matt Stinchcomb, founder of the Good Work Institute; Secretary Bob Fox, one of New York’s most respected architects and sustainability leaders; Danielle Do, who serves as the Chief Corporate & Securities Counsel at Synchrony Financial; Herbert Dreiseitl, sculptor, artist, landscape architect, and interdisciplinary urban planner; Stephanie Lazar, a public health policy and advocacy expert with a passion for environmental sustainability, biodynamic farming, and social justice; and Alex Sierck, a civil rights lawyer, public defender, and psychoanalyst. Please visit our website to read their complete bios.

More about Alfa

Born and raised in Ethiopia, Alfa now lives in New Jersey with her husband and two little boys. She is the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Rising Tide Capital, a non-profit organization that provides underserved entrepreneurs with the resources needed to grow successful businesses. Under her leadership for the past 15 years, Rising Tide Capital has run hundreds of Community Business Academies, which provide intensive business management training coupled with year-round coaching and mentorship to over 1,000 entrepreneurs annually. Corporate, foundation, and governmental funders underwrite the cost of tuition for all participants. By building successful businesses, these entrepreneurs meet their families’ basic needs, create opportunities for social mobility, and help transform their local communities into thriving economies.

Alfa is also the co-founder of Future Tide Partners, which equips cross-sector leaders to shift capital, policy, and culture to respond to a new world of work in service to a flourishing future economy.

Alfa has received a number of awards and recognition for her work with Rising Tide Capital. In 2009, she was selected and profiled as a CNN Hero, and recognized by President Barack Obama during a speech at the White House. She was recognized as one of Forbes’ Most Powerful Women Changing the World with Philanthropy in August 2012, and has been awarded honorary doctorates from St. Peter’s University and New Jersey City University.

Major media features include the Suze Orman Show, The Larry King Show, O, The Oprah Magazine,,, The Star-Ledger, as well Essence Magazine.