FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 25, 2017
Contact: Courtney O’Neal, 215.801.4381, Courtney@megaphonestrategies.c om
From Refugee to CEO: Van Jones’ Dream Corps Appoints Vien Truong to Lead Organization in
With Anti-Immigrant and Anti-Refugee Policies Dominating Trump Agenda, Van Jones’ Non-Profit Arm Appoints
Accomplished Former Refugee to Lead the Organization Through the Trump Era
San Francisco, CA -- Today, Dream Corps appointed Vien Truong as the new Chief Executive Officer of the social justice
accelerator, of which Van Jones is President. The organization runs numerous progressive initiatives -- Green For All,
#Cut50, #YesWeCode, and #LoveArmy -- all of which work on parts of an overall mission to close prison doors and open
doors of opportunity.
Dream Corps is also launching a national 14-city tour this week in Los Angeles called “We Rise,” featuring Van Jones,
celebrities, and activists engaging local communities and changemakers to help address some of the most pressing
issues facing America.
Vien grew up in some of the worst neighborhoods of Oakland, California with her parents and 10 siblings who came to the
U.S. as refugees from Vietnam. Her parents worked hard -- first picking fruit, and later in garment factories. With limited
English, they couldn’t find better work. Without access to good jobs, they were forced to stay in cramped apartments, in
communities that were deeply polluted, and going to schools surrounded by fences that looked like prison fences. It wasn’t
until college that Vien realized these conditions were not the norm for all Americans, and she pledged her life to working to
improve the quality of life for low income families.
Personally recruited by Van Jones to direct Green For All, a climate justice initiative, Vien joined the Dream Corps team two
“Vien Truong is the right woman, at the right time, to lead us. We have been planning for this for a long time. And now we
are ready to take this important and historic step together. ” said Van Jones, CNN commentator and president of Dream
Truong is a lawyer who is widely regarded as a top policy expert, progressive leader and strategist on economic
development, workforce policies, clean energy, public finance and growing the green economy. Vien was recognized by
President Obama’s White House as a Champion of Change for her work on climate equity and has received several
congressional, state, regional and local awards for her work advocating on behalf of those most vulnerable to poverty and
“As a refugee, I understand why so many Americans are afraid right now -- but I truly believe out of these dark times will
come a beautiful new resistance movement that will reshape America. We have already seen the beginnings of this,” said
Vien Truong of the announcement. “I’m thrilled today to lead Dream Corps. Together, we will be not only a voice against
Trump’s most harmful actions, we will be a voice for bold solutions that tear down barriers to opportunity for millions of
families who’ve been stuck on the sidelines for too long.”
Vien’s appointment as CEO, as a woman of color, runs counter to current trends in the non-profit industry. According to the
Chronicle of Philanthropy only about a third of nonprofits similarly-sized are led by women, and Nonprofit Quarterly reports
that only seven percent of all nonprofit chief executives are people of color.
Dream Corps was founded by Van Jones in 2014 to help cutting-edge initiatives grow big enough to impact millions of
lives. Dream Corps finds aspiring leaders who have the courage and determination to tackle America’s toughest
challenges, then connect them to world-class partners, smart digital tools and national media platforms that will help them
Dream Corps’ initiatives are helping to close prison doors and open doors of opportunity.
Green For All: Green For All fights pollution with solutions. They work to get solar panels, healthy food, and good jobs into
communities that have little money or power. Green For All wants to build an inclusive, green economy that is strong
enough to lift people out of poverty.
#cut50 is a bipartisan initiative working to make our communities safer while working to safely and smartly reduce our
incarcerated population by 50 percent over the next 10 years.
#YesWeCode: #YesWeCode is building a diverse pipeline of 'homegrown' tech talent to meet demand for workers in the
tech sector and boost local economies. Be a part of their movement to increase opportunities in the tech sector.
#LoveArmy: The #LoveArmy is a value-based movement fighting for a country where everyone counts. This movement is a
moral, spiritual and strategic framework for building Love + Power and creating a home for changemakers.