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Founding Story

Rebecca van Bergen, Founder and Executive Director of Nest graduated with her Masters Degree in Social Work the same year that Muhammad Yunus won the Nobel Peace Prize.

Having grown up with a great-grandmother and grandmother who were quilters and sewers, Rebecca was drawn to craftsmanship as a means of self-expression and opportunity. Following her passion to turn craft, the second largest employer of women globally, into a means to correct the gender and income imbalance in our world, Rebecca founded Nest at age 24.

More than 11 years later, Rebecca’s leadership, determination, and enthusiasm continue to propel Nest forward.

Rebecca is a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, Ashoka Fellow, Levi Strauss & Co. Collaboratory Fellow, Draper Richards Kaplan Fellow, Cordes Fellow, and GLG Social Impact Fellow. When she is not traveling the world with Nest, she enjoys spending time enjoying the power of making with her husband and two children.

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Graph showing Nest financials

Awards

World Economic Forum Young Global Leader

Ashoka Fellow

CFDA Lexus Challenge Advisor

Fabric of Change Award from C&A Foundation and Ashoka

Meet Our Family

Leadership and Team

Rebecca Van Bergen
Founder and Executive Director
rebecca@buildanest.org

Christopher Van Bergen
Chief Operating Officer
chris@buildanest.org

Ashia Sheikh
Chief Strategy and Partnerships Officer
ashia@buildanest.org

Kristin Schneider
Chief Marketing Officer
kristin@buildanest.org

Sara Otto
Director of Artisan Compliance and Programming
sara@buildanest.org

Marika Shiga
Director of Engagement & Partnerships
marika@buildanest.org

Amanda Lee
Director of Brand Strategy and Artisan Production
amanda@buildanest.org

Joellen Nicholson
Director of Artisan Engagement and Fellowships
joellen@buildanest.org

Amélie Decaix
Manager of Finance and Administration
amelie@buildanest.org

Brenda Gottsabend
Project Manager and Graphic Designer
brenda@buildanest.org

Meghan Black
Manager of Philanthropy
meghan@buildanest.org

Shalini Suresh
Manager of Compliance & Research
shalini@buildanest.org

Lindsey Struck
Director of Institutional Giving and Impact
lindsey@buildanest.org

Indrani da Silva
Director of Corporate Partnerships
indrani@buildanest.org

Board of Trustees

Jim Brigham, Chair

Marty Cordes

Brendan Cullen

Ivanka Mamic

Julie Meyer

Louise Parzick

Nicole Pechanec

Marissa Sackler

Iliane Ogilvie Thompson

Heather Winn Bowman

Advisory Board

Alex Bellos

Allison Whipple Rockefeller

Amanda Hearst

Amber Valletta

Amy Christiansen Si-Ahmed

Andrew Morgan

Anne Wattis

Ashley Shaw-Scott Adjaye

Bandana Tewari

Burak Cakmak

David Adjaye

Deborah Keiser

Ellice Sperber

Writer/Director/Producer, Jeffrey D Brown is an Academy and Emmy Award winner. SOLD, adapted from the award-winning book by Patricia McCormick is about a young girl trafficked from Nepal and into sexual slavery in brothel in Kolkata, India.  It is an inspiring story of hope and courage based on true accounts.  SOLD is Jeffrey’s directorial feature film debut.

It stars: Niyar Saikia, Gillian Anderson, David Arquette, Seema Biswas, Susmita Mukerhjee and Ankur Vikal.  SOLD produced Jane Charles and Executive Produced by Emma Thompson has won five international audience awards and two jury awards. It has been subtitled into 15 languages and dubbing into Hindi, Bengali and Nepali.

We use our film to raise awareness as well as funds for our programs. We have re-built 86 school classrooms since the earth quake in Nepal and helped to fund the building of two safe houses for girls rescued from brothels in Kolkata.

In partnership with Nest, we are assisting two businesses to expand: FreeSet in Kolkata and Impulse Social Enterprises in Shillong, North East India. Nest is connecting them with design and business expertise to expand their products into international market and hopefully connect them with international name brands to increase profits.  This will enable these businesses to train and hire more survivors of trafficking.  This is the best way to insure freedom and the freedom of their children bringing an end to the cycle of slavery. 

Also, we have trained 30 survivors of sex trafficking as trainers of a PTSD healing modality called Capacitar.  This is a train the trainer model. We hope to travel these 30 trainers to many safe houses and rescue centers in India and many other countries.

Jeffrey Brown, the director and co-writer of SOLD is dedicated to making a difference in the lives of sex trafficking survivors in India and Nepal.  We also use the film with non-profits in India and Nepal to spread awareness so girls and families can avoid getting trafficked in the first place.  We have a 50 min PG-13 version of our film which we have shown through many corporate companies such as Google, British Airlines and many others to create awareness and help raise funds for the work you do to address trafficking. 

Jeffrey Brown

Jill Iscol

Jim Brett

Krista Stack

Kristy Caylor

Lauren Bush Lauren

Livia Firth

Mara Hoffman

Melissa Joy Manning

Nadja Swarovski

Natalie Chanin

Niclas Kjellström-Matseke

Pam Baer

Paul Van Zyl

Phoebe Campbell

Sean Ansett

Steven Kolb is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). He oversees all operations for the American fashion industry’s group of 500 designers, and manages CFDA’s membership, activities and philanthropic efforts such as Fashion Targets Breast Cancer, disaster relief and HIV/AIDS.

In his role, Kolb also helped cultivate emerging American fashion talent through programs such as the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund and the CFDA {Fashion Incubator}. Under his guidance, the annual CFDA Fashion Awards has become the preeminent spotlight on American fashion.

Kolb also led the CFDA in the acquisition of the Fashion Calendar, spearheaded the launch of New York Fashion Week: Men’s, and established CFDA’s Strategic Partnerships Group.

Additionally, he was instrumental in creating CFDA’s Health Initiative to address health issues among models.  He also helped develop Fashion Manufacturing Initiative to revitalize   New York City’s garment industry.

Kolb works directly with CFDA Chairwoman Diane von Furstenberg and the Board of Directors comprised of America’s foremost designers. He holds a Masters in Public Administration from New York University.

Steven Kolb

Susan McPherson

Wen Zhou

Founding Board

Ann Vonallmen

David Vonallmen

Alison Sheehan

Kari Erickson Woolf

Lauren Hurst

Molly Carter

Susanna Johnson Bird

Philanthropic Partners

  • Bloomberg Philanthropies
  • Cordes Foundation
  • Curry Stone Foundation
  • Doris Duke Foundation
  • Draper Richards Kaplan Foundation
  • Fabric of Change -Ashoka & C&A Foundation
  • Fullen-Smith Foundation
  • Goodrich Foundation
  • Humanity United
  • IF Hummingbird Foundation
  • Imago Dei Foundation
  • Kastory Family Foundation
  • Patagonia Foundation
  • QVC
  • Staples Trust
  • Swarovski Foundation
  • Swedish Postcode Lottery – Culture Fund
  • Target
  • Winn Family Foundation
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