William M. Abrams Appointed Executive Director of Trickle Up Program


NEW YORK, October 15, 2005  Trickle Up Program, which helps the lowest income people worldwide take their first step out of poverty, has named William M. Abrams as Executive Director. The appointment was announced by Wendy Gordon Rockefeller, Trickle Up board president.


“We are so pleased to have Bill join Trickle Up as Executive Director. His extensive management experience and high-profile career have provided him with the tools necessary to lead Trickle Up and to grow the organization so that more individuals living in poverty will be assisted,” Ms. Rockefeller said.


Mr. Abrams joins Trickle Up following a career as a senior executive and journalist for the New York Times, ABC News and The Wall Street Journal. He has served as an advisor to the Soho Partnership, a job-readiness program for the homeless in New York City; the Bowery Residents Committee, a New York agency that helps the homeless and others with limited resources; and the Partnership for a DrugFree
America, a national anti-drug advertising campaign. He is currently President of The Village Temple, in Manhattan, where he is leading a capital campaign to fund the construction of a new synagogue.


Mr. Abrams served as President of New York Times Television in November 2001 through January 2005. Under Mr. Abrams’ leadership, the documentary production company became an industry leader in the field of current affairs programming for cable and public television. Prior to joining the Times, Mr. Abrams was President of, a website that provided information and travel services for tourists to France, and a new-business consultant for Discovery Communications Inc.


From 1993-1998, he was Vice President of Business Development for ABC News. There he founded and managed ABC News Productions, a leading producer of documentaries. From 1978 through 1985, Mr. Abrams was a staff reporter and editor for The Wall Street Journal.


Mr. Abrams has Master’s degrees, in journalism and business, from Columbia University, and a Bachelor’s degree from Tufts University.
“Trickle Up has a vital mission, a distinguished history, and a very committed staff and board,” Mr. Abrams said. “It is an organization with enormous potential for growth, and I feel privileged to have the opportunity to help Trickle Up expand its work and help the poorest of the poor better their lives.”


Founded in 1979, Trickle Up is a pioneer in the field of microenterprise, which has been widely demonstrated to be an effective model for alleviating poverty. In conjunction with local partners, Trickle Up now works in Africa (Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Mali, Niger and Uganda), Asia (Cambodia, India, Nepal), and the Americas (Bolivia, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua). Trickle Up also operates in the United States in New York, the Mississippi Delta, Appalachia, Native American lands, Southern California and other areas.


Trickle Up participants started 9,858 businesses last year, improving the lives of nearly 40,000 people. Three-fourths of the businesses were started by women, and the resulting economic gains also yield improved medical care, education, housing and independence for the Trickle Up participants and their families. All this is accomplished with grants of $100 per participant ($700 in the U.S) and business training. Trickle Up’s slogan says it all: “So much for so little.”


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