Aspen Institute’s Partners for a New Beginning Awarded Grant from Blackstone Charitable Foundation

February 10, 2014

For Immediate Release

Contact: Chris Westling
Middle East Programs Program Associate
The Aspen Institute
+1 949-280-6413 |

Aspen Institute’s Partners for a New Beginning Awarded Grant from Blackstone Charitable Foundation

Grant will fund high-impact entrepreneurship delegation 

Washington, DC, February 10, 2014 The Aspen Institute’s Partners for a New Beginning (PNB) announces receipt of a $125,000 grant awarded by the Blackstone Charitable Foundation to fund a high-impact entrepreneurship delegation to New York City and Silicon Valley. The grants, totaling $1.6 million, were made through the second annual Blackstone Organizational Grants Program, which targets organizations that focus on entrepreneurship and innovation. Through this program, The Blackstone Charitable Foundation is helping innovative organizations that directly support entrepreneurs to pilot, expand or replicate projects or programs that will catalyze the growth of successful businesses, industries, and communities.

The delegation will facilitate the transfer of knowledge and expertise between seasoned US entrepreneurs and investors and 10 high-impact tech entrepreneurs representing PNB countries. The week-long delegation will include business training, mentorship sessions, and opportunities to pitch to US investors in order to provide early-stage entrepreneurs with the resources they need to grow their businesses. Job creation is both an economic and security imperative in a region where 68% of youth are unemployed; supporting high-growth entrepreneurs is central to addressing this challenge.  This delegation will contribute to the transformation of stagnant economies by empowering their most innovative, fastest-growing startups.

Since 2011, Aspen has led delegations of American entrepreneurs and investors to the levant and North AfricaThese delegations made a demonstrated impact in the entrepreneurship ecosystem through: training angel investors; strengthening entrepreneurship curricula in universities; providing unparalleled hands-on training for entrepreneurs by US experts; linking entrepreneurs in PNB countries with US mentors. 

“The Blackstone Foundation’s mission of advancing high-growth entrepreneurs compliments the work we are doing in PNB countries to help entrepreneurs succeed with their start-ups,” said Walter Isaacson, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute and vice-chair of Partners for a New Beginning. “The generous funding from Blackstone will allow us to bring their model to a region where accelerating job creation through start-ups is both an economic and security imperative.”

“At Blackstone, we believe that a robust global economy depends upon a pipeline of creative, talented, and inspired entrepreneurs,” said Amy Stursberg, executive director of the Blackstone Charitable Foundation. “Through this program, we are able to direct the Foundation’s resources towards helping entrepreneurship flourish across the nation and globally, and support entrepreneurs on a path toward innovation and discovery.”

The grantees were selected through a Request for Proposals (RFP) issued by the Blackstone Charitable Foundation as part of its five-year, $50 million Entrepreneurship Initiative.


About The Blackstone Charitable Foundation

The Blackstone Charitable Foundation was founded at the time of The Blackstone Group’s Initial Public Offering in 2007 with substantial commitments from the Firm’s employees. Influenced by the enterprising heritage of the firm and its founders, The Blackstone Charitable Foundation is directing its resources and applying the intellectual capital of the firm to foster entrepreneurship in areas hardest hit by the global economic crisis. Through its investment expertise across several asset classes and geographies, Blackstone has a unique perspective on the global economy and a heightened understanding of how entrepreneurial activity is often the crucial catalyst in the growth of successful businesses, industries and communities. For more information, see

About The Aspen Institute 

The Aspen Institute’s Partners for a New Beginning (PNB) is a network working in ten countries where local projects and priorities are identified by local chapters.  PNB strategically matches them with US and international partners. The Aspen Institute serves as the PNB Secretariat and is responsible for driving, expanding and sustaining the PNB network.  The Secretariat maintains communication between stakeholders, identifies strategic partners and brokers partnerships that support project development and expansion. For more information, visit

The Aspen Institute is an educational and policy studies organization based in Washington, DC. Its mission is to foster leadership based on enduring values and to provide a nonpartisan venue for dealing with critical issues. The Institute is based in Washington, DC; Aspen, Colorado; and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. It also has offices in New York City and an international network of partners. For more information, please visit


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