The Prime Movers program sends out a completely confidential invitation for nominations to several dozen trusted allies. We receive nearly 100 submissions and cull through them to find the best prospects for our fellowship program. Ultimately, we seek individuals who are or have the potential to be clear leaders of specific social movements. We then invite these nominees to submit applications, without revealing their nominator. After reviewing applications, selected fellows are invited to interview with members of the selection committee. The final decision is made by our board after both the application and interview phase is complete.


We are looking for leaders following in the footsteps of pioneers such as Susan B. Anthony, Cesar Chavez, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Social movements, led by these individuals, are sustained collective challenges by ordinary people who act to change policies, cultural behavior, or social inequities. Although they work on many different issues, every fellow:

  • Commits to realizing the societal change he or she envisions;
  • Represents a mass of individuals who share his or her vision;
  • Cultivates the next generation of leaders in his or her movement;
  • Takes risks;
  • Inspires others to action; and
  • Must be affiliated with a 501-c-3.