30 Aug 2017

Harvard Business School Announces 2017 Goldsmith Fellows

Fellowship program supports first-year MBA students with experience and a career interest in wide range of social enterprises

BOSTON—Harvard Business School (HBS) has announced the 2017 recipients of its Horace W. Goldsmith Fellowships. Established in 1998 by the Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation and Richard L. Menschel (MBA 1959), a former director of the Foundation and a limited partner at Goldman Sachs, to encourage students from the nonprofit sector to attend HBS, these fellowships enable the School to award approximately $10,000 each to seven to ten incoming MBA students.

Recipients of the award have served in leadership roles in nonprofit and public sector organizations, and must demonstrate a strong commitment to a career in these areas. New recipients are invited to participate in events with current and former recipients, as well as local nonprofit leaders, in an effort to create a network of individuals committed to working in social enterprise.

The 2017 Goldsmith Fellows are:

YOHANNES ABRAHAM, who was most recently the interim chief operating officer at The Obama Foundation, a nonprofit organization created to train and inspire young leaders to make a difference in their communities. Prior to that, he was deputy assistant to President Obama, chief of staff of the Office of Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs, and senior advisor to the National Economic Council. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Yale University.

FRANCESCA BARRETT, who previously worked as a research assistant at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and as co-director of Crimson Care Collaborative, where she was responsible for the leadership and management across all six of Harvard Medical School Student-Faculty Medical Practices, with approximately 300 volunteers and 2,500 patient visits each year. An alumna of Williams College, she is also a student at Harvard Medical School.

ELEONORA BERSHADSKAYA, who for the past three years served as deputy chief of staff and policy advisor in the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development in New York City, where she managed a team that covered housing, land use, and economic development agencies, and drafted a 10-year, $1.9 billion plan to make 10,000 apartments affordable to lower-income households. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Barnard College.

PRARTHNA DESAI, who previously worked at the Clinton Health Access Initiative to expand reach into new markets. She also worked with Zipline International, Inc., where she managed healthcare components in the launch, growth, and expansion of the world’s first commercial drone delivery service in Rwanda, Zipline’s first country of operations. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, she is also enrolled in a master’s program at Harvard Kennedy School.

CALEB GAYLE, who was a program manager for the George Kaiser Family Foundation, where he led a team that designed, developed, and implemented a county-wide performance management system to track and monitor the delivery of services for 10,000 families with children under five. He is a Soros Fellowand also a master’s candidate at Harvard Kennedy School. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Oklahoma and a master’s from St. Anthony’s College, Oxford.

AZEEZ GUPTA, who previously worked as a program director for the Pratham Education Foundation, one of India’s largest education nonprofits, where he managed a staff of 1,500 employees and 5,000 volunteers across 16 Indian states, overseeing skills development models and creating innovations to train youth to pursue a variety of vocations and help women start microbusinesses. He is an alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.

NICK MATTHEWS, who spent the last few years working for Social Finance UK, a London-based nonprofit that specializes in impact investing and social impact bonds, where he advised the government of Fiji on the feasibility of a bond to fund a tuberculosis prevention and treatment program, improved access to higher education for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, and established a new corporate entity to extend the reach of children’s services using impact investing. He is a graduate of the University of Durham in England.

LAURA SANTEL, who most recently worked for DotHouse Health, a healthcare center in Dorchester, Massachusetts, where she led a team revising clinical roles, including the creation of training and evaluation plans, and helped establish measures that resulted in significant improvements in colorectal cancer and diabetes screenings. She received a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University.


Cullen Schmitt


The HBS Social Enterprise Initiative applies innovative business practices and managerial disciplines to drive sustained, high-impact social change. It's grounded in the mission of Harvard Business School and aims to educate, support, and inspire leaders across all sectors to tackle society's toughest challenges and make a difference in the world.


Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 200 offers full-time programs leading to the MBA and doctoral degrees, as well as more than 70 open enrollment Executive Education programs and 55 custom programs, and HBX, the School’s digital learning platform. For more than a century, HBS faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching to educate leaders who make a difference in the world, shaping the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.