A successful business leader and technology investor in Austin, Texas, Brian Sheth also has a substantial history of philanthropy and charitable service. His recent involvement in the anti-homelessness fight of the Cicero Institute is the latest in a long line of public and environmental service projects.
Driven by a dedication to natural conservation that dates back to his childhood, Brian Sheth founded the Global Wildlife Conservation and the Sheth Sangreal Foundation. The Global Wildlife Conservation has since merged with the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation to form the biodiversity preservation organization Re:wild, and the Sheth Sangreal Foundation has provided over $60 million to fund reforestation and endangered species projects in over 80 countries.
Closer to home, Brian Sheth has mounted significant initiatives to better the lives of Austin residents in need. In 2021, he and his wife gave one million dollars to assist local organizations in their efforts to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. The Sheths have also provided critical financial aid to help Austin residents deal with natural disasters such as the tragic winter blizzard of 2020.
Through the Sheth Sangreal Foundation, Brian Sheth has supported public health crusades in Austin and around the world. The Sheth Sangreal Foundation particularly focuses on traditionally underserved and disenfranchised populations. For example, it recent donated a million dollars to further the work of the Austin Area Urban League, which is dedicated to fighting for an “equitable quality of life” for all Austin residents.
Now, Brian Sheth has joined forces with fellow Austin business and technology leader, Joe Lonsdale, to support the anti-homelessness initiatives of the Cicero Institute. From its Austin headquarters, the Cicero Institute his dedicated to leveraging the “innovative energy of America’s leading technologists and entrepreneurs to broken systems in the public sector to advance liberty and opportunity for all Americans.”
Brian Sheth and Joe Lonsdale have pledged their support to the Cicero Institute and its fight to end homelessness in Austin, contributing their monetary resources as well as their time. Although the Cicero Institute has not disclosed the exact amount of their contributions, the organization has characterized their investment in this worthy cause as “significant.”
The Cicero Institute believes that the Austin homelessness crisis requires innovative solutions. To get the “fresh approach” that Cicero desires, Brian Sheth and Joe Lonsdale have joined forces with the organization in support of its new Entrepreneur in Residence program.
This program is currently in search of an “entrepreneurial-minded, mission-driven MBA,” who will develop and lead a new nonprofit organization that will concentrate on combatting Austin’s homelessness problem with a focus on innovative strategies and business-style principles. Under the leadership of this individual and the advisement of Cicero’s homeless policy expert Judge Glock, the organization will engage Austin’s top businesspeople to benefit from both their money and people management skills. The organization is also likely to collaborate with a wide variety of officials from both the City of Austin and State of Texas.
The Entrepreneur in Residence program will begin with a comprehensive quantitative and qualitative analysis of the homeless problem in Austin. This means collaborating with existing local homeless groups to identify their ability to get individuals and families off the streets, while dealing with contingent substance-use and mental health issues.
Austin’s nonprofits and government agencies have certainly contributed a great deal to the fight against homelessness. However, the Cicero Institute is confident that the unique perspective of top business talent can give this fight the extra muscle that it needs.
“Many of the top-growth businesses today are mission driven,” notes the Cicero Institute, “and this is a great opportunity for the right individual to work with these leaders to build a new, mission-driven organization that can serve as a model for other cities across the nation.” To better share and promote its innovative solutions with communities beyond Austin, the Entrepreneur in Residence program will partner with an experienced team of documentary filmmakers.