Stockton is working aggressively to help lift residents out of poverty, invest in communities, and empower students to attend and complete college. To that end, the city is taking on two big initiatives: it is the first American city to take on a universal basic income demonstration, and it is implementing Stockton Scholars, a program aimed at removing barriers to college for low-income students. To help achieve the goals, the Mayor’s Office enlisted FUSE executive fellow Jason Weiner to attract new philanthropic funding for the city to advance its ambitious vision, and to implement Stockton Scholars.

Working with the Stockton Scholars team, Jason helped to create an organization that will distribute its first 800 scholarships within 20 months. He also developed a registration process and website that students can use to complete their registration and receive scholarship funds. To engage the donor community, Jason hosted a full-day “Stockton Reinvention Tour,”  which introduced more than 80 philanthropic leaders to local changemakers. Jason continued to connect community initiatives with donors’ programmatic priorities, and developed a proposal for hiring a new resource development officer. Jason’s efforts are helping to connect Stockton’s most vulnerable residents with the tools and resources they need to achieve their full potential.