In 1996, Rebecca Onie co-founded Health Leads (formerly Project HEALTH), as a sophomore at Harvard College, with Dr. Barry Zuckerman at Boston Medical Center. From 1997-2000, Rebecca served as executive director of Health Leads. At Harvard Law School, she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review and research assistant for Professors Laurence Tribe and Lani Guinier. Rebecca clerked for the Honorable Diane P. Wood of the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and was an associate at Miner, Barnhill & Galland P.C., a civil rights and community economic development firm. During this time, Rebecca co-chaired Health Leads’ Board of Directors. In 2006, she returned as CEO of Health Leads, now operating in Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, New York, Providence, and Washington, DC. Last year, Health Leads’ corps of nearly 1,000 college volunteers assisted 8,800 low-income patients and their families in accessing food, heat, and other basic resources they need to be healthy. In 2009, Rebecca was honored to receive a MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship. In 2010, O! Magazine named her to its Power List of twenty women who are “changing the world for the better.” Most recently, she was named to Forbes Magazine’s Impact 30, recognizing the top 30 social entrepreneurs in the world. Rebecca is a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, U.S. Ashoka Fellow, and member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and the Mayo Clinic Center for Innovation External Advisory Council. She has received the John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award; the Jane Rainie Opel ’50 Young Alumna Award; and the Do Something Brick Award for Community Leadership.
Co-Founder & CEO, Health Leads