Elevating Impact Stories: Jacob Sherman

May 6, 2013 at 1:13 pm Leave a comment

Leading up to the Elevating Impact Summit on June 21, we’ve invited event speakers and panelists to engage in a storytelling project. We believe that storytelling is an essential part of effective social innovation. How can we tell stories in a way that generates interest and creates connections? How can we listen to the stories of others with the empathy needed to achieve true understanding? We hope that by sharing stories of failure, transformation and success, you’ll learn more about our speakers and the promise and challenges of social innovation. 

Jacob Sherman answers the question, “What are the most important lessons you’ve learned in life?” with a story of why we should all dare to fail:

“One of the other important life lessons I learned comes out of a William Carlos Williams poem where he talks about no defeat being made up entirely of defeat, because it always opens a place formerly unsuspected.” (Read the entire poem here)


 Length: 2:12

Jacob ShermanJacob Sherman works for the Institute for Sustainable Solutions at Portland State University, where he promotes a stronger integration of sustainability into the curriculum. He has been advancing sustainability at PSU since 2009, providing leadership in the university’s nationally recognized Take Back the Tap campaign, President Wim Wiewel’s Sustainable Drinking Water Task Force, and the University Studies Peer Mentor Program. In 2011, Jacob was awarded both the PSU and the State of Oregon Student Employee of the Year awards. In 2012, Jacob spoke to more than 25,000 people as a student speaker at PSU’s commencement ceremony.

Jacob holds a Master of Science in Educational Leadership and Policy with a concentration in Leadership for Sustainability Education from Portland State, and has a B.A. in English as well. An avid believer in the adage that a small group of dedicated people can change the world, Jacob actively involves himself in efforts to enhance the community. He currently serves on the PSU Alumni Association and is the Chair of his neighborhood association. A fifth generation Portlander, Jacob enjoys gardening, backpacking, and calling the Pacific Northwest home with his wife and son.

Jacob will moderate a panel on “Re-entry Redefined” at the Elevating Impact Summit on June 21.

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