Global Ambassadors – SAME SKY
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“Same Sky sits at the perfect intersection between talent, fashion and purpose. Same Sky not only has the power to take a look from nice to fabulous but it also serves as a symbol of women empowerment that equally inspires those who make it as much as those who wear it.”
Jill Abrahams, Massachusetts
Director of Major Gifts, Harvard Kennedy School
“I am deeply moved by the mission of Same Sky, and proud to support both the organization and its visionary founder, Francine LeFrak. Same Sky is a priceless and powerful social enterprise, which deserves widespread attention and support.”
Mark Ackermann, New York
President & CEO of Lighthouse Guild International
“Same Sky demonstrates that one can manage and develop aid programs together and in accordance with those who are to be aided, helping them to achieve autonomy in the medium term. I will support Same Sky with utter conviction wherever I can.”
Peter Badge, Germany
Official Photographer for Nobel
“Same Sky is about giving to women and empowering them. It is about change and growth by supporting women being creative in their job— for their family, their community, and themselves. With Same Sky, I can support other women that have been through so much pain and suffering to rise above and create, work, and grow.”
Brenda Bakker, British Columbia
Make-up Artist/ Hair Stylist
“I support Same Sky because at its very core are the two principles that will change everything: empowerment and entrepreneurship. Same Sky breeds independence as the creativity of these women is nurtured and unleashed upon the world. This is the catalyst that will create economic independence.”
Shawn Baldwin, Chicago
President/CEO Capital Management Group
“Through ‘Blessed Hands’ of these Rwandan women, every one of these Same Sky bracelets ‘comes alive.’ The story of Same Sky means more when you understand what the care and attention to detail born unto each piece comes from the heart of a woman who wanted a hand up. It’s important we do all we can to support and strengthen this dynamic company.”
Tomaczek Bendarek, New York/ LA
Producer, Singer-Songwriter
“Same Sky’s dedication to helping women from Rwanda is truly an inspiration to all. The smiles, stories, and self-esteem from these women are as beautiful as the jewelry they make. It is with great pleasure and pride to wear Same Sky jewelry and to help this important cause (not to mention how many compliments I receive!).”
Julie Bell, San Francisco
EVP Global Marketing, Benefit Cosmetics
“Same Sky is such a great organization helping women by guidance to help rebuild their lives. I love the fact that it’s not a handout. It’s empowering women and making today happen for a better tomorrow worldwide. It’s fun, colorful, fashion-forward jewelry with heart!”
Karina Brez, Palm Beach
Founder, CEO Palm Beach Gemologist
“I am pleased to support Same Sky in its mission to economically empower women so that they can make choices and improve not only their own lives but also create a positive ripple effect in the communities around them. A woman is better able to negotiate her economic, political, and social rights, her human rights when she is financially independent.”
Cherie Blair, London
Founder of the Cherie Blair Foundation
“When I received my first bracelet as a gift, my initial thought was how pretty it was— the color, the weight. It had a wonderful energy. My wish for Same Sky— it continues to help the beautiful women in Rwanda... to develop things of beauty, helping, healing, and bringing both industry and pride to many more women.”
Bronwen Booth, New York
Actress/ Activist
“As the founder of Indagare and the Indagare Souk, I am a huge supporter of trade-not-aid enterprises, and Same Sky is helping to educate discerning consumers about their importance. I wear my Same Sky jewelry with pride and gratitude and cannot wait to visit the women who make it in Rwanda.”
Melissa Bradley, New York
Founder/CEO of Indagare
“Same Sky jewelry is not only beautiful but captures the essence of the organization— an interwoven mosaic depicting the special bond that unites and strengthens the women of the world. I am so thrilled to play an active part in this amazing organization.”
Pam Brewster, New Jersey
Friend & Supporter
“Same Sky is an amazing organization that allows every woman in the world to shine and I’m so inspired and honored to be an Ambassador for this organization founded by my dear friend who is herself an inspiration to the entire world!”
Romero Britto, Miami/Sao Paulo
Contemporary Artist
"When I was first introduced to Same Sky, I felt the tangibility immediately. Not only is Same Sky a source of provision, but more importantly, a source of healing for the women of Rwanda. I believe in the mission of Same Sky, and I am proud to be an ambassador for the women of Rwanda.”
Jerrald Buchanan, Oklahoma
Technology Executive aka “Chief Technical Ninja”
“The mission of Same Sky is so unique and powerful because instead of only attempting to give, the supporters of Same Sky seek to receive.... We are all capable, we are all connected, and we are all responsible to teach other. I am forever grateful to be connected to women of Same Sky who have been gracious enough to include me in their circle of female empowerment.”
Kelsey Buchbinder, New York
Student, Columbia University School of International & Public Affairs; Specialty: Rwanda
“If I can contribute to an organization that is powered by a fair trade initiative that offers employment to women living with HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa and help them earn 15-20 times the average wage to make beautiful jewelry, sign me up!”
Carol E. Campbell, New York
Group Strategic Director, Hearst Media
“It is such an honor to wear the beautiful jewelry that is handcrafted by the courageous Rwandan women. It is with great enthusiasm and joy to support and be part of Same Sky’s global mission of empowering women through trade-not-aid.”
Michelle Carlino Brown, New York
Philanthropist
“I love Same Sky. The name Same Sky beautifully pulls together the global urgency to connect and love as one. It is a pleasure and an honor to be a part of Same Sky’s unlimited vision that we can be saved by saving one another.”
Cristina Carlino, New York
Visionary and Founder of Philosophy Cosmetics & Archetypes Website
“The initiative enables women to create sustainable enterprise to support themselves and depend on their own skills versus dependence on donors. Families are supported, lives saved, and a new cycle is perpetuated. The quality of the work is exceptional.”
Roxanne Cason, Hawaii/ Santa Barbara
CEO, Cason Family Foundation
“Same Sky is an incredible initiative that empowers women form less advantaged countries to make a difference in their lives and communities. It gives them an amazing feeling of worth. I am so proud to be an Ambassador for Same Sky in Tasmania, Australia.”
Janina Cowley, Tasmania
Managing Director at Organizers International
“I can’t wait to take my first visit to Rwanda so I can thank the women in person and explain to them how much they truly inspire me. I am so honored to be a part of the Ambassadors program and I will continue to support Same Sky in any way that I can.”
Kamie Crawford, Maryland
Entertainment Host, Miss Teen USA 2010
“Same Sky bracelets symbolize the strength, love and courage of Rwandan women to rebuild their lives in the shadow of unspeakable human tragedy. Their dedication to building a brighter future filled with compassion and reconciliation is all the more impressive given their economic challenges. I am truly inspired.”
Darlene Daggett, Pennsylvania
Founder, Executive Director of Ikatu International
“By connecting my network and all that I have with the causes I stand for, I hope to be able to contribute to make this world a better place where we treat people equally and with respect and dignity. We are all united through the universe.... we have to raise funds and give from the heart instead of from the head.”
Carine de Meyere, Amsterdam
Global Professional Fundraiser
“Same Sky bracelets are as beautiful, brilliant, and unique as the courageous Rwandan women who so expertly craft them... Each bracelet reflects the work of dedicated hands and brave hearts; the work of women who empower themselves and raise so much needed awareness in others. I am honored to be a part of Francine LeFrak’s vision for Same Sky.”
Sandy Deutsch, New York
Assistant Office Manager, MSK Law Firm
“Same Sky is beautiful. The beauty of the bracelets mirrors the inner beauty of the artisans.... They in turn bring beauty to the lives of the people who buy their work, not only through the bracelets, but also through their life stories. They are models of what the human spirit can survive, and how hope can endure, and Same Sky demonstrates a beautifully effective way to empower women to empower themselves.”
Elizabeth Dewberry, Georgia
Author
“Independence and empowerment through creativity. That sums up Same Sky to me!”                                      
Benjamin Doller, New York
Executive Vice President of Sotheby’s
“The most amazing thing about Same Sky is seeing women empower women. Not only am I constantly inspired by the work Same Sky is doing in Rwanda to give women a second chance, I am inspired by the entire Same Sky team and their motivation, dedication, and enthusiasm for doing good work in the world.”
Kathryn Everett, New York
Artists For Peace and Justice
“Being a part of something that Francine LeFrak has devoted her soul to is what makes this organization even more special to me. There is no doubt that the work that is being done to improve the lives of women in Rwanda and empower them to make a difference in their lives and in their own community is extraordinary.”
Jeffrey Ferraro, Connecticut
Managing Director of Fieldpoint Private
"Same Sky does not only help women to live a self-decisive life, but especially a life of the next generation. I support Same Sky with my association “Learn Money e.V.”, because the financial education of people is very important to me, personally. It leads to equality of opportunity for us all and clears the imbalance in the world!"
Carola Ferstl, Berlin
Founder & Journalist, "Learn Money e.V."
“Same Sky has offered an opportunity for me to help African women as they work toward realizing a brighter future, better health, and independence. I am proud to support these women as they learn the skills to create this beautiful jewelry. My hope is that Same Sky will continue to grow, to touch more lives, to mend families, and to create a better future for all the women involved.”
Mary Fisher, Arizona
Political Activist, Artist and Author
“Every day I wear at least one piece of Same Sky jewelry. The pieces serve as a reminder that our own women artisans are recovering from the atrocities they endured, and continue to be empowered by an inner strength to change their lives. This is a powerful message that also aligns with the importance of conscientious consumerism, thinking carefully about how our spending habits can affect change.”
Samm Furniss, New York
Director of Collaborative Team Teaching, York Preparatory School
“It is a pleasure to champion the courageous women of Rwanda in their efforts to life themselves and their children out of the ashes of the 1994 Rwandan genocide. Today, as I wear my lovely bracelets, my prayerful thoughts are with Brigitte and the other women artisans of Rwanda.”
Carmen Fusco, New York
Research Scientist and Clinical Nutritionist
“It has been almost two years since the launch of Same Sky Bracelets at the Ana Tzarev Gallery in Manhattan, yet I vividly remember the words of the special guest, Janet Nkubana, 2008 Africa Prize Laureate: ‘You are not buying a bracelet, you are saving a life.'Same Sky is not only “beauty with a cause,” it seems to be the cause for beauty."
Liliana George, Long Island
Executive Director of Strategic Development, Estée Lauder
“Same Sky sits at the perfect intersection between talent, fashion and purpose. Same Sky not only has the power to take a look from nice to fabulous but it also serves as a symbol of women empowerment that equally inspires those who make it as much as those who wear it.”
Lili Gil Valletta, New York/ Denver/ LA/ Bogota
Entrepreneur, Co-Founder XL Alliance and TV contributor
“I love the bracelets and enjoy wearing them almost every day! I wear them with a sense of pride knowing that I’m supporting terrific women and girls who made the bracelets especially for me. I often get compliments and it makes me proud to share the story and why the bracelets are important to me. Keep them coming!”
Pat Harris, Chicago
Global Chief Diversity Officer, McDonalds
“I firmly believe and support the idea represented by Same Sky. It’s giving the women of Rwanda the ability to rise up. Employment not only gives these women self-respect and financial independence, but most importantly, empowers them.”
Michele Herbert, Florida
Philanthropist
“Empowering women solves so many problems, especially in developing countries. When I learned of the impact of Same Sky on the women and families in Rwanda, and now in New Jersey, I couldn’t imagine a better place to devote my energy. I imagine the sky over my also above those beautiful Rwandan women and feel proud to have a connection.”
Judy Hofflund, Los Angeles
Activist, Former Hollywood Agent
“Same Sky bracelets symbolize the strength, love and courage of Rwandan women to rebuild their lives in the shadow of unspeakable human tragedy. Through the enormous dedication and vision of Same Sky, women are on a path to economic independence. I am truly inspired.”
Simone Hoyle, Hong Kong
Senior Vice President/ Chief Restaurant Officer, McDonald's of Asia, the Pacific, Middle East, & Africa
“Same Sky gets everything right: Trade, not aid. Empowerment and dignity, not handouts. Creating things that make people feel beautiful and alive and connected to each other in a global sisterhood.”
Valerie Keller, New York
Executive Director- Strategic Transformation, Advisory, Ernst & Young
“We are all women under the same sky and helping one another enriches us and gives all of us a feeling of empowerment. We have so much in this country and to think that simply buying a bracelet can help change the lives of women in Rwanda is amazing. I am proud to be associated with this initiative.”
Veronica Kelly, New York
Philanthropist/ The Bowery Mission
“I am deeply aware of and involved in the treatment and empowerment of HIV+ women in the Southern California area. Our members were delighted to meet Francine LeFrak during her recent visit to the Coachella Valley, were so impressed with the work she is doing, and we are proud to support Same Sky and the impact which it is having globally.”
Terri Ketover, California
Chair of Desert AIDS Project's "100 Women"
“The Same Sky event at Morgan Stanley was such a success from my point of view. Same Sky struck a cord with so many of my colleagues. They were very excited to have the opportunity to buy such beautiful pieces, and support the brave women artisans in the cooperative.”
Sheila Klehm, New Jersey
Managing Director, UBS Private Wealth Management
"All people should be given to opportunity to contribute to society and be rewarded for such contribution accordingly. Same Sky is providing the platform that allows this to occur for women who otherwise may not participate in our global society. Not only are Same Sky pieces, symbols of empowerment, they are truly beautiful objects."
Adam Knight, Melbourne, Australia
Aboriginal Fine Art Consultant
“Women are the drivers of change in their economies and societies— powerful engines of growth if we let them. Same Sky has recognized that giving women the opportunity to become financially independent is vital for women to succeed.”
Henriette Kolb, Washington DC
Head of Gender Secretariat, International Finance Corporation
“Women’s love for jewelry is universal as is the desire to live in peace and dignity. Skills and employment are two crucial factors for women to take charge of their own lives, provide for their children, and make their voices heard. Same Sky offers both to Rwandan women who survived the genocide and to American women who depend on a second chance. I am so honored to be part of an organization that not only empowers those women, who create the beautiful necklaces and bracelets but also changes the women who wear them.”
Anna Kuchenbecker, PhD., Berlin
Senior Partnership Adviser for Europe, The Institute for Inclusive Security
“Beautiful jewelry makes women feel beautiful, and this is the gift the talented Same Sky artisans share with the world. I am honored to be a part of an organization that is providing economic security and pride.”
Tamara Laine, New Jersey
Journalist/ Documentary Filmaker
“Same Sky is a powerhouse organization that empowers women who probably would not have many other choices in this world enabling them to advance forward and regain their dignity and self-worth. Same Sky’s founder having been a wonderful mentor of mine, I have come to know the team of women who work to support this initiative, and have yet to meet women with such strength, compassion, and positive energy.”
Dianne Laurance, Australia
Executive Director at Pivot Group & Laurance Wines
“Francine LeFrak is a visionary and a savior in her mission to empower the women of war ravaged Rwanda. It is an honor and a pleasure to be part of her ‘diplomatic’ team to support these efforts and spread the word about the power of one woman with a mission.”
Deborah Lehr, Washington DC
Director of The Paulson Institute
“Same Sky has become a second chance for many of these artisans who lost everything during the genocide. I admire these women for their fervent resilience, work ethic, and the great pride they take in their work. As one of Same Sky’s first employees, I was given the rare opportunity to see the “before and after,” and for that, I am truly grateful and inspired to this day.”
Elizabeth Lang, New York
Social Entrepreneur
“Same Sky offers Rwandan genocide survivors not only hope, but training, education, and skilled employment. I am honored to call myself a friend of the Same Sky team as I am proud of their efforts to enhance the world. I think it’s an incredible opportunity for everyone to make a purchase with a purpose”
Ann Lovell, Arizona
Trustee and Executive Director at The Lovell Foundation
“Same Sky is about sharing the story of these incredible women. They have a business, they take care of their families, and they are changing their lives— it’s incredible.... Same Sky empowers them to go on.”
Janet Malpeso, New York
Philanthropist, Activist
“One of the most captivating aspects of Same Sky is its effectiveness. Rather than giving traditional charity to some of the world’s most underprivileged women, the initiative teaches real skills that help build real lives through economic sustainability. Same Sky lives up to the ‘hand up, not handout’ motto and I am happy to be a Brand Ambassador for this amazing social enterprise.”
Shawn McClain, New York
Director of Business Development, Miss Universe Org
“'A hand up, not a hand out’— that said it all. I was touched by the beauty, fashion-forward flare, and the quality of the creations made by the women from Rwanda who were willing to move on with their lives to be creative, in spite of all horrors that had happened to them. I was also moved by the Same Sky team’s faith in these women and their open heart to help them.”
Bianca Mead, Los Angeles
President of Bianca Mead Entertainment Agency
“I am honored and humbled to be associated with Same Sky and the women artisans of Rwanda. Their spirit and tenacity to embrace, forgive, learn, and heal are a consistent and important personal daily inspiration for me.”
Nicholas Miscusi, New York
Actor/Activist
“Francine's passion inspired me to not only buy beautiful jewelry for myself and my friends, but to proudly become part of this extraordinary organization. The concept of giving women the tools to help themselves become independent, self-sufficient, and able to provide for their families is a powerful idea.”
Nancy Moonves, Los Angeles
Founder, CEO of Lighten Up Productions
“Same Sky is the beautiful marriage between ethical shopping and luxury goods. The opportunity to make your voice heard with your wallet.... Buying beautiful bracelets and necklaces that support women in a sustainable way is beauty in itself.”
Kristen Morrissey, New York
Strategic Partner Development Manager at Google

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