Stories from Our Community

Welcoming America

David Lubell is the Founder of Welcoming America, and recently shifted his full-time focus to the organization's international efforts as the Founding Director of the Welcoming International program. An accomplished social entrepreneur, David inspires people to build a different kind of world -- one that embraces immigrants and refugees, and fosters opportunity for all. Welcoming America, established in 2009, works with over 200 cities and towns across the U.S., supporting NGO's and local governments to transform their communities into inclusive places where everyone thrives. The Welcoming International Initiative that David leads partners with entities that want to build bottom-up movements for welcoming in their countries. It is currently working with partners in Germany, Australia, New Zealand and the U.K.

David is also the founder, and former Executive Director of the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC), which has grown into a model for immigrant rights organizing throughout the U.S.  At TIRRC, David helped found Welcoming Tennessee, the model for what is now Welcoming America.

Welcoming America has gained significant recognition. In 2014, the White House honored the organization as “Champions of Change” for their innovations in immigrant integration. That same year the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC) and BMW Group distinguished Welcoming America as a recipient of their Intercultural Innovation Award.

A graduate of Wesleyan University , David received a master’s degree in public administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. He is the recipient of several social entrepreneurship fellowships, including Ashoka, Draper Richards Kaplan, and Harvard. He is also a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and was named to the 2016 Chronicle of Philanthropy's 40 under 40 list. In 2017, David was awarded The Charles Bronfman Prize, which recognizes young humanitarians whose work is inspired by their Jewish values and is of universal benefit to all people.