Carla Javits, REDF

Twitter = @CJavitsREDF

Carla Javits is the President and CEO of REDF, the only venture philanthropy in the USA that invests exclusively in the growth of social enterprises focused on employment. Carla focuses on achieving measurable results by leveraging the business community's knowledge, networks, resources, and the mission of the nonprofit to create jobs and tackle the challenges of homelessness, incarceration, mental health, and addiction. 

In this episode, Carla discusses the venture philanthropy model, the significance of employment and job creation for our economy and our society, and the REDF expansion into cities across the country, including a successful partnership model in Los Angeles. We also discuss how they are creating a thriving ecosystem of social enterprises, with the proper support services to be able to grow and expand. 

REDF is a venture philanthropy pioneering organization that invests exclusively in the growth and effectiveness of social enterprises dedicated to helping people who otherwise would be excluded from the workforce, get jobs, keep jobs, and build a better life. 


In this interview, we discuss:

  1. How REDF is a classic example of venture philanthropy.  (2:30)
  2. How they support the social enterprises that provide employment and opportunities. (6:45)
  3. Reaching out to social enterprises all over the country that are providing employment through a national census. (11:15)
  4. The effectiveness of public/private partnerships, lining up Government policies with philanthropic investments. (18:30)
  5. If you demonstrate that you have an idea that actually works, you will consistently be able to attract attention and support. (22:00)
  6. Measuring social returns on investment (SROI).  (27:00)


"I'm a big believer of just rolling up your sleeves and doing the hard, practical work."  -Carla Javits


  1. REDF's commitment to the idea of Social Return on Investment
  2. About the Social Innovation Fund.
  3. REDF Employment Social Enterprise Census Link. 
  4. Mathematica Jobs Study Final Report Link.
  5. A successful partnership with LA:RISE Program - Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise.
  6. Book Recommendations: "They Can't Kill Us All, The Story of Black Lives Matter" by Wesley Lowery (AMAZON Link) and "The Fire This Time" by Jesmyn Ward  (AMAZON Link)


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