Model & Strategy
Welcoming America supports a network of governmental and non-governmental organizations in the US and globally working to create inclusive communities where immigrants and all residents can thrive and belong. Through Welcoming America’s members and partners, communities nurture a homegrown culture that helps newcomers and longtime residents alike feel at home, access opportunity, and have a seat at the table in changing communities.
With the goal of making welcoming a broad social norm, Welcoming America provides a roadmap, membership network, coaching, tools, and incentives that enable local leaders to accomplish more together. Some of the ways they achieve this are through the Certified Welcoming program, in which local governments at the city or county level develop a roadmap for immigrant and refugee participation in civic, social, and economic life. Throughout the year, Welcoming America hosts webinars and events to equip a network of organizations and movement of leaders working toward greater immigrant and refugee inclusion, fostering a community of support and expertise.
Welcoming America is David Lubell’s second nonprofit startup. His first venture was the Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC), an organization that continues to build a statewide voice for Tennessee’s growing immigrant community. While at TIRRC he saw firsthand the need for a project that could reach out to everyday Tennesseans struggling to adjust to the demographic changes taking place all around them. He helped found the Welcoming Tennessee project to achieve that vision, and later left TIRRC to replicate the work nationally through Welcoming America.
David was chosen as a 2015 Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, culminating in his presentation at their annual 2016 meeting in Davos, Switzerland where he spoke on integrating refugees. David was named as one of The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s “40 Under 40” for 2016 as a trailblazer in crafting innovative new approaches to entrenched problems. David is recognized as an Ashoka Fellow and one of Univision’s top ten social entrepreneurs in the Americas.
In 2018, Rachel Peric was appointed Executive Director. Inspired by her family’s refugee story, since joining the organization in 2011, she has served as the organization’s deputy director amongst other senior roles. She holds a BA from Johns Hopkins University and a Masters in Public Management from the University of Maryland.
In the course of their welcoming work, Welcoming America’s members have institutionalized roughly 600 welcoming policies and programs. Currently, members support efforts in more than 500 communities across 31 states and the District of Columbia, home to one in seven Americans. A new Welcoming International program is also incorporating global partners into the Welcoming movement.
Over 200 Welcoming America members are driving community-wide change and actively building more inclusive and welcoming communities that support the full civic, economic, and social participation of new Americans and all residents.
Welcoming America News
Watch: David Lubell at TEDxBerlinDavid Lubell, founder of Welcoming America, recently spoke at a TEDx event in Berlin about the movement his organization is leading to build “welcoming communities”,…May 2016
White House Launches National Campaign to Build Welcoming CommunitiesOn September 17, 2015, the White House launched the Building Welcoming Communities Campaign, accelerating the growing movement of communities that are becoming more prosperous by embracing…Sep 2015
40 Under 40: Young Leaders Who Are Solving the Problems of Today — and TomorrowIn January 2015, The Chronicle of Philanthropy named a number of DRK Foundation grantees to their first-ever “40 Under 40” list of young leaders from…Jan 2015
Welcoming America: An Incredible Honor from the PresidentHere is an excerpt of what President Obama said in his speech: “[L]et me close with the story of somebody who is working to bring…Dec 2014
Welcoming America Honored with Worldwide Intercultural Innovation AwardThe Intercultural Innovation Award is given to the most innovative projects around the world that are working to build intercultural cooperation and dialogue, and Welcoming…Nov 2014