OWN Welcomes New Executive Director

February 24, 2020


SEATTLE, WA. – OneWorld Now! (OWN) today announced the appointment of Jordan Goldwarg as its new Executive Director, effective immediately.

“It’s an honor to be part of OneWorld Now!, an organization whose mission I have admired and supported for many years,” said Jordan. “I am excited and proud to be part of OWN and look forward to contributing to its lasting success in the years to come.”


“On behalf of the students we serve, OWN’s dedicated staff, and the Board of Directors, I am very pleased to welcome Jordan as our new Executive Director,” announced Herman Uscategui, OWN’s Board Chair. “His outstanding career in education, youth development, and social change will be instrumental in continuing OWN’s impact in the years to come.”


The community can learn more about Jordan in his introductory letter, included below.


“I’m thrilled to have Jordan join OneWorld Now! as my successor,” said former Executive Director Jennifer Tanaka. “His track record developing youth leadership and advancing intercultural understanding bring great value to the organization and to our students. I also love Jordan’s commitment to civic activism and am excited to see how he shares that with young people in our community.”


OneWorld Now! envisions a world where all young people have access to transformative international education. Since its inception in Seattle in 2002, OWN’s mission has been to develop the next generation of global leaders. OWN is a nonprofit 501(c) 3 organization accredited as a supplementary school by Cognia and the Northwest Accreditation Commission. OWN has served 1,800 youth directly in our yearlong program, while engaging over 3,500 youth through various program elements. Over 98% of our graduates have enrolled in college, with most being the first generation in their family to attend college.


A letter of introduction from Jordan Goldwarg, our new Executive Director:


Dear OneWorld Now! Community,


I am thrilled to be joining OneWorld Now! as Executive Director! Our mission remains as critical today as it was when OWN was founded in 2002. In an era when the United States is becoming more isolated from its international partners, and when democratic ideals of acceptance and inclusion are being challenged around the globe, we need to invest in the next generation of global leaders who can bridge divides and foster understanding.


In many ways, I feel like my life story has been a microcosm of the OWN story. Born in Montreal, I grew up in a rich, bilingual culture, switching back and forth between English and French on a daily basis. Seeing language as a key to unlocking foreign cultures — and also knowing it can be a tool for welcoming immigrants to our own country — I studied Spanish intensively in college after moving to the US, and I subsequently spent a summer working for an LGBTQ rights organization in Lima, Peru. (While I do not currently speak Arabic, Mandarin, Korean, or Russian, I look forward to learning from OWN’s wonderful teachers!)


In addition to my work in Peru, I have studied and worked abroad in South Africa, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom, and I continue to feel that international travel is one of my favourite modes of learning. Also, as someone who is a white male, international travel has been essential in teaching me to recognize my privilege, listen to the lived experience of others, and center those voices in decision making.


Much of my professional career has been spent helping youth unlock the leadership potential that they innately possess. After beginning my career as a high school history teacher, I eventually became the Seattle Chapter Director of  a non-profit organization that brings together Muslim, Jewish, and Christian youth from the United States and Israel/Palestine for leadership development, civic engagement, and social change projects. Over the years, as I have seen youth use their power to create change, I have become convinced that they are not just the leaders of tomorrow; they are already the leaders of today.


I look forward to working with our whole community — youth, parents, staff, board members, partners, and supporters — to continue the tradition of excellence that OWN has developed over the past 18 years. And I remain committed to OWN’s vision of equity, ensuring that students of colour and low-income students are centered in our programs and have access to the kind of life-changing experiences we offer. 


Finally, I want to thank Jennifer Tanaka for her excellent stewardship of the organization during her tenure, and Sarah Standish for guiding the organization through this leadership transition as Interim Executive Director. 


And I look forward to the opportunity to meet all the members of our community in the weeks to come! We have two great events coming up in April: an international trivia night at Optimism Brewing on the evening of Tuesday, April 7, and an intimate dinner at Cook | Weaver on the evening of Wednesday, April 29 (save the date for now; registration will be available soon!).


All the best,

Jordan Goldwarg

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