An Interview With Francine LeFrak
YOU ARE A TONY AND EMMY AWARD WINNING PRODUCER FOR FILM AND THEATER. HOW DID YOU GET INVOLVED WITH SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP?
After developing a film on the Rwandan Genocide, I knew that I wanted to work on the ground with women genocide survivors. Producing had taught me how to tell the artisans' stories, to shed light on their creative artisanal skills, and to never give up even in the face of failure.
WHAT OTHER INITIATIVES DO YOU CONCERN YOURSELF WITH?
I am passionate about sharing the positive effects of women empowerment. I am the Chair at Harvard Kennedy School’s Women’s Leadership Board, a body of influential leaders that advances issues related to women throughout the world. Through this work we support the Women and Public Policy Program (WAPPP) promoting groundbreaking research to close the gender gap and get more women involved in business.
WHICH AWARDS ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?
I am so proud of my Emmy, Tony, Peabody awards. I was also honored with the United Nation’s Women Together Award, the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, and the Legion of Honor as presented by the French government. I also love to speak at panel discussions such as The Social Innovation Summit, Forbes 400 Philanthropy Summit, and I am a regular contributor to The Huffington Post.
WHAT IS YOUR VISION FOR THE FUTURE OF SAME SKY?
Same Sky was born with a mission to provide women with the dignity of work. From Rwanda to Jersey City, we are dedicated to eradicating poverty through training and job creation. My vision for Same Sky is to continue partnering with other like-minded companies in order to build a marketplace for products that are handmade, possess authenticity and support artisan communities around the globe. Ultimately we want to spread the idea that shopping can change the world.