NKR Wins Social Entrepreneurship Award

The founder of a national kidney donor registry has been presented with this year’s Social Entrepreneurship Award for his innovative work and service.

Garet Hil’s personal mission to find a kidney donor for his 10-year-old daughter (he and his wife were incompatible) led him to create a national registry of potential donors and recipients to instantly identify compatible sets of matches, resulting in 67 life-saving transplants over the past 18 months.

NKR’s goal is to facilitate thousands of life-saving transplants, saving the U.S. health care system $100 billion from transplants facilitated over the next decade. In March of this year the National Kidney Registry organized the first ever multicenter six-way kidney swap demonstrating the scalability of this concept.

The National Kidney Registry is one of five groups recognized by the Manhattan Institute this year. Its Social Entrepreneurship Awards honor inventive nonprofit leaders who implemented pioneering solutions to challenging social problems afflicting our nation and whose effective programs influenced the way we think about helping those in need.

A prize of $25,000 will be presented to each of the 2009 Social Entrepreneurship award-winners and $100,000 will be presented to the winner of the William E. Simon Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Social Entrepreneurship.

“Once again this year, we see how resourceful and creative America’s non-profit organizations can be in helping the nation cope with some of our most difficult social problems with limited or no help from government–and in many cases doing a better job than government programs established for similar purposes,” said Howard Husock, Vice President of Programs at the Manhattan Institute and Director of the Social Entrepreneurship Initiative.

Established in 2001, the Manhattan Institute Social Entrepreneurship Initiative is supported by the William E. Simon and JM Kaplan Foundations of New York. Nominations are made by outsiders who have supported the organizations which they nominate. After initial screening by Manhattan Institute staff, ten finalists are chosen by the award program’s selection committee, consisting of leaders from the philanthropic and academic community. Winners are chosen only after a site visit to the program and an extended in person interview.

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