Encore.org today announced that Gary Hollander, PhD, President and CEO of Diverse and Resilient, Inc., is a 2013 Purpose Prize fellow. The Purpose Prize is the nation’s only large-scale investment in social entrepreneurs and other creative problem solvers in the second half of life.

Hollander was named a fellow because of his founding of Diverse and Resilient and his commitment to eliminating health disparities among LGBT people. While he started the project in 1995 as a program of Aurora Health Care and the UW School of Medicine, in 2002 he left his job at Center for Urban Population Health to make D&R a separate organization, thus devoting all of his time to the LGBT community.

“Purpose Prize fellows are using their passion and experience to help solve some of society’s toughest problems,” said Marc Freedman, founder and CEO of Encore.org and author of The Big Shift. “They represent a growing wave of people in their 60s and beyond who are using their know-how to change the world, while shifting perceptions of what is possible in this stage of life.”

The Purpose Prize program is funded by the John Templeton Foundation, The Atlantic Philanthropies. and Symetra. The Prize is awarded by Encore.org, a nonprofit that promotes encore careers – work that is both personally meaningful and serves the greater good.

“In 1991, I was honored by Lambda Rights with a Pace Setter Award. It made me pause to ask, ‘What difference do I actually intend to make?'” Looking back on the intervening 22 years, Hollander now adds, “It is great to have the health, energy, and enthusiasm to help do the big things that need doing. The honor of becoming a Purpose Prize fellow encourages me to keep the course of my work now and after retirement in a couple of years.”

Diverse and Resilient is possibly best known for the innovative social marketing program that highlights the stories of 60 Milwaukeeans who love and accept the LGBT persons in their lives. More than 50,000 story cards have been distibuted through community festivals, non-profit organizations, and area churches. There have been more than 50 million impressions of the nine outdoor advertising billboards and bus ads posted thus far.

The agency has also produced over a dozen uniquely branded evidence-based programs that address health disparities among LGBT youth and adults. Be ABLE, Be Y.O.U., It’s About Us, Youthink, CLEAR, SHEBA, and CTR/PCC comprise the agency’s HIV prevention services, collectively known as EndHIV.

A panel of 21 judges – leaders in business, politics, journalism and the nonprofit sector – chose the seven winners from a pool of more than 1,000 nominees. This year’s 43 fellows are finalists for The Prize. An awards ceremony will be held in December in San Francisco.

For more information about The Purpose Prize, visit: www.encore.org/prize.

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About Encore.org (www.encore.org)

Encore.org is a nonprofit organization building a movement to make it easier for millions of people to pursue “encore careers” – second acts for the greater good. The Purpose Prize, funded by the John Templeton Foundation, The Atlantic Philanthropies and Symetra, is a program of Encore.org.

About Diverse and Resilient, Inc. (www.diverseandresilient.org)

Diverse and Resilient is Wisconsin’s largest LGBT organization providing health promotion and disease prevention services throughout the state. Since 1995, Diverse and Resilient has provided HIV prevention services for teens, but expanded its work for adults in 2002 to address important health disparities in partner and community violence, substance use and abuse, mental health, and social determinants of health. The agency is a Partner of United Way of Greater Milwaukee.