Liz is the founder of The Smile Project, a nonprofit organization based in New York City. The purpose of The Smile Project is to empower young people to start SPARK Clubs in their own communities. SPARK stands for Strengthening Positivity and Reinforcing Kindness. It all began with a Facebook post on November 9, 2011: “Day 1: Happiness is.. those perfect car rides where the radio just plays all the right songs.” What started as a seemingly random Facebook status turned into hundreds and thousands of days of “Happiness is” quotes. This became the foundation for a movement that would grow into The Smile Project. She decided to create The Smile Project to help empower youth to give back, share joy, tell stories, create adventure, and be kind. These are the five pillars of The Smile Project. Young people join the mission by organizing a SPARK Club, designed to “spark” acts of kindness and meaningful service throughout their community. Liz’s excitement for kindness is contagious. She inspires many to come together to do kind things.
Liz grew up outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – a place that will always be home. She studied at Westminster College in New Wilmington, PA where her love of writing led her to major in Communication Studies. She graduated in December 2015, and moved to New York City shortly after to pursue a career in nonprofits. Most recently, she has worked in Stewardship and Development at the American Heart Association | American Stroke Association. This summer she will embark on The Smile Project “Kindness Always” tour across America to make a tangible web of beautiful people who believe in the power of paying it forward. The focus is on human connectivity – no matter how different we may look or from how far we have come or whatever we believe – the thread of human kindness runs through us all. Liz will connect with nonprofits, community organizations, and inspiring people across the country to spread joy and talk about Happiness. Visit www.the-smile-project.com to learn more and connect with Liz!