Alex Forrester is the co-founder of Rising Tide Capital–a nationally recognized nonprofit organization working at the intersection of inclusive economics, social justice, and entrepreneurship. Alex is driven by a deep interest in the conceptual frameworks that are driving the economic and ecological crises of the 21st century. He believes in the inherent creativity and giftedness of each and every person, and in the under-appreciated importance of grassroots entrepreneurship as a form of community resilience and creative response to the needs of the world. Since 2004, Alex has been leading Rising Tide Capital and its work to make high-quality business education and support available to entrepreneurs in communities that are too often overlooked for lack of resources. Rising Tide Capital has expanded and replicated its model nationally and now works with thousands of entrepreneurs each year in multiple languages and cities across the country.
Alex is a recipient of the prestigious Heinz Award and has been recognized with Rising Tide Capital at the White House, United Nations, World Economic Forum, CNN Heroes, and other prominent publications. He received an undergraduate degree in Postmodern Philosophy and Theology from Harvard University, an honorary doctorate from New Jersey City University, and is currently pursuing Masters-level research at Drew Theological Seminary on ecological theology, economics, and spirituality. He lives in New Jersey with his two sons Noah and James and his beloved wife and partner Alfa Demmellash, with whom he pursues his most important and precious calling: bringing love into the world.
Alfa Demmellash is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Rising Tide Capital, a non-profit organization that provides underserved entrepreneurs with the resources needed to grow successful businesses. Over the past 17 years, the organization has run hundreds of Community Business Academies, which provide intensive business management training coupled with year-round coaching and mentorship to over 1,000 entrepreneurs annually. Corporate, foundation and governmental funders underwrite the cost of tuition for all participants. By building successful businesses, these entrepreneurs meet their families’ basic needs, create opportunities for social mobility and help transform their local communities into thriving economies.
Alfa is also the co-founder of Future Tide Partners, which equips cross-sector leaders to shift capital, policy, and culture to respond to a new world of work in service to a flourishing future economy. She was named Young Global Leader in 2015 and has appeared in leading media outlets, such as CNN, the Suze Orman show, O the Oprah Magazine, Essence Magazine, Bloomberg, Inc Magazine, BusinessWeek and Entrepreneur Magazine. Alfa is the recipient of honors and awards, including being recognized by President Barack Obama, named a CNN Hero, receiving the prestigious Heinz Award, and being named one of the Most Powerful Women Changing the World by Forbes. She currently serves as a Commissioner on the New Jersey Future of Work Taskforce and a board member of the New Jersey Pandemic Relief Fund.
Born and raised in Ethiopia, Alfa now lives in New Jersey with her husband and partner Alex Forrester and their two beloved sons.
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