Jonathan Wood is on a mission to change the world, and it's beginning to interfere with his day job.
So he will leave his post as president and chief operating officer of Whitebox Advisors LLC, Minneapolis, within the next couple of months to launch a charity in September. He will remain on the hedge fund firm's board of directors and retain an economic share.
Charity Aware, Woodbury, Minn., will encourage teenagers to become community volunteers. An online clearinghouse of volunteer opportunities will showcase local charities seeking youth support for a variety of causes, including the arts, environmental campaigns, and alleviation of poverty and hunger. Charity Aware will be begin its work in the Twin Cities and plans to expand to other metro areas.
“The goal is to motivate teenagers to alter both their current and future life through service,” Mr. Wood said in an interview.
Mr. Wood said his teenagers have taught him that “you have to communicate with teens in media they use and talk to them the way they want to be spoken to.” It's a given that social media will figure prominently in the non-profit's teen recruitment efforts.
Mr. Wood's whole family is already involved in planning the charity's launch, including his wife, Mary, and kids Jessica, Taylor and Noah.