White House Author
Founder of Youth Up
Gerald Chertavian is dedicated to closing the Opportunity Divide that exists in our nation. Determined to make his vision a reality, Gerald combined his entrepreneurial skills and his passion for working with urban young adults to found Year Up in 2000. An intensive one-year training and education program that serves low income youth ages 18-24, Year Up provides the technical, professional, and communication skills needed to empower urban young adults to make successful transitions to careers and higher education. Gerald’s commitment to working with urban youth spans more than 25 years. He has actively participated in the Big Brother mentoring program since 1985 and was recognized as one of New York’s outstanding Big Brothers in 1989. He is the recipient of the 2003 Social Entrepreneurship Award by the Manhattan Institute and the 2005 Freedom House Archie R. Williams, Jr. Technology Award. In 2008, he was appointed by Massachusetts’ Governor Deval Patrick to serve on the MA State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. Gerald earned an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School. He has received honorary doctorates from the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology and Mount Ida College. He is on the Board of Advisors for the Harvard Business School Social Enterprise Initiative and a member of the World Economic Forum’s Youth Unemployment Council.