Finalists Announced for the Lone Star Prize

Credit: Super Tiny Magnet

On January 7, 2021, Lever for Change announced the five finalist teams that will advance in the next stage of the Lone Star Prize, a competition for a $10 million grant funded by Lyda Hill Philanthropies.

Selected from a pool of 172 applicants, these projects are focused on improving the quality of life of Texans. One of the finalists will be selected as the recipient of the $10 million Prize in late spring 2021.

The finalists are listed below in alphabetical order (follow links to their profile pages for more information):

  • JUST Community: JUST will invest in 20,000 female entrepreneurs to build wealthier, more financially resilient communities across Texas by increasing their ownership opportunities.
  • Meadows Mental Health Policy Institute: The Lone Star Depression Challenge will improve quality of life and mental health access to communities across Texas using evidence-based approaches. Key partners include UT Southwestern Center for Depression Research and Clinical Care, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine of Harvard Medical School, Dell Medical School Department of Psychiatry, and Path Forward for Mental Health and Substance Use.
  • Merit America: The Lone STARS project will build new pathways to upwardly mobile careers for talented, low-wage Texans without bachelor’s degrees, focusing on underrepresented minorities. Key partners include Jobs for the Future, Opportunity @ Work and College Promise.
  • Texas Water Trade: Texas Water Trade’s project Clean Water for All Texans proposes a nonprofit water service provider that would deliver clean water to households most in need by deploying affordable onsite water treatment systems through a trained workforce. Key Partners include the University of Texas at El Paso, Columbia University, and Antelope Water Management.
  • William Marsh Rice University, Baker Institute for Public Policy: William Marsh Rice University, Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy – Center for Energy Studies will transform the environment through implementation of a soil carbon storage market, while growing new economic opportunities for rural communities.

About the Lone Star Prize

Launched in early 2020 by Lyda Hill Philanthropies, the Lone Star Prize is a statewide competition designed to find and fund bold solutions focused on building healthier, stronger communities in Texas.

Over the next three months, the finalists will each receive an additional $40,000 planning grant and will work with a team of technical experts to strengthen, revise, and re-submit their proposed solutions for the $10 million Prize.

Donors interested in funding outstanding Lone Star Prize projects may contact Dana Rice, Vice President of Philanthropy at Lever for Change.

For additional information about the Prize, watch this video featuring all five of the finalists.