Harwood Public Innovator Running for County Commissioner in Florida

Community leader Daniella Levine Cava, one of The Harwood Institute’s original public innovators, is now making a run for county commissioner of Miami-Dade County. Levine Cava attended one of the Institute’s first Public Innovator Labs and used the tools she learned there to refine the work of Catalyst Miami, a social services agency that helps low- and middle-income families through education, advocacy and dialogue on vital social and economic issues.  The agency’s initiatives have generated national recognition from a range of governmental and nongovernmental organizations such as the U.S. Treasury Department, the Government Accountability Office and the Ford Foundation.

“The public has lost confidence in government because they do not see their interests truly reflected,” Levine Cava said. “I will bring a deep respect for the public and openness to ideas and concerns to the position of county commissioner. It is my commitment to helping people and communities thrive that makes me feel compelled to run and to step up to serve.”

Public innovators, as established by the Institute, are individuals with the motivation and capacity to catalyze and create positive change in communities and improve how communities work together. The Harwood Institute has begun a nationwide campaign to train 5,000 public innovators and recruit a corps of 100,000 public innovators by 2016.

Levine Cava’s decision to run for county commissioner comes as no surprise to Rich Harwood, founder and president of The Harwood Institute.

“Daniella is a premier public innovator,” said Harwood. “She possesses an incredible, tireless passion for serving as a change-agent and advancing the common good.”

Before establishing Catalyst Miami, Levine Cava worked on behalf of special-needs children and immigrants while she was a director for Legal Services of Greater Miami. As deputy director for the 11th Judicial Circuit Guardian Aid Litem Program, she represented children in the child welfare system.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology with honors from Yale University and graduate degrees in law and social work from Columbia University.

Click here to learn more about Daniella Levine Cava and her campaign.

Read the report Public Innovators: Forces for Social Change and Civic Renewal  in which Daniella Levine Cava was featured.