Morgan Stanley

The Family Center Team Wins Morgan Stanley’s Eleventh Annual U.S. Strategy Challenge

May 23, 2019

Employees contributed over 9,600 hours to strategy development for fourteen nonprofits; Program has benefited over 115 U.S. nonprofits since launch

New York —

Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) today announced that The Family Center team has won the eleventh annual U.S. Strategy Challenge, the Firm’s flagship pro bono program, which brings together rising talent to help nonprofit organizations solve strategic, mission critical challenges. Over the past ten weeks, Morgan Stanley employees provided in-depth consulting services to nine local nonprofits, addressing key strategic challenges such as expansion and scaling strategy as well as critical opportunities to enhance efficiency and effectiveness through business and program models. This effort culminated in a final competition held at Morgan Stanley’s New York headquarters on May 21, during which each Morgan Stanley team presented final strategic recommendations for their nonprofit partner. The team for The New York Center for Children was the runner up and the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation team received third place.

The winner of the eleventh annual U.S. Strategy Challenge was the team working with The Family Center, a charity that works to strengthen families affected by crisis, illness or loss to create a more secure present and future for their children. The Brooklyn-based nonprofit challenged its Morgan Stanley team to analyze the best way for The Family Center to integrate primary care services at their facility to increase access to care. After performing extensive analysis and understanding the key drivers of success, the Morgan Stanley team created a customized financial model and partnership toolkit for The Family Center to use going forward when assessing their opportunities to deliver primary care services in the future. 

“Working with the Morgan Stanley team has been a wonderful experience − the insight, information and tools they gave us will be instrumental as we continue to work to provide expert services for our families,” said Ivy Gamble Cobb, Founder and Executive Director of The Family Center. “The financial analysis tool and the partner assessment tool are like my bible now and, with these tools, we’ll be able to better measure impact on the organization and make decisions rooted in good data.”  

The Morgan Stanley U.S. Strategy Challenge pairs our talented employee base with nonprofit organizations that are in need of strategic advice on a mission-critical issue. In line with the Firm’s expertise in delivering innovative solutions for clients, coupled with the culture of giving back, the program provides nonprofits with significant assistance in bringing meaningful impact and long-term change to their communities.   

“I would like to congratulate each of the nine teams that participated in this year’s U.S. Strategy Challenge,” said Joan Steinberg, Morgan Stanley’s Global Head of Philanthropy. “All of the proposals put forward were extremely intelligent and impressive, which is a true testament to the success of this pro bono initiative that uniquely leverages the talents and passions of Morgan Stanley’s current and future leaders, giving back to the community in tangible and impactful ways.”

The nine nonprofit organizations who took part in this year’s U.S. Morgan Stanley Strategy Challenge include:

Advancement for Rural Kids (ARK) – ARK partners with rural communities in the developing world to secure food, kids’ schooling and income for life, starting with its award winning 5-cent school lunch.

Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE) – Asian Americans for Equality is dedicated to improving the lives of immigrant and low-income New Yorkers by strengthening and empowering communities.

Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation – The Reeve Foundation is dedicated to curing spinal cord injury by funding innovative research and improving the quality of life for people living with paralysis through grants, information and advocacy.

The Family Center – The Family Center works to strengthen families affected by crisis, illness or loss to create a more secure present and future for their children.

Girls on the Run NJ East – Girls on the Run inspires girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running.

Greyston Foundation – Greyston Foundation’s mission is to create thriving communities through the practice and promotion of Open Hiring™.

The New York Center for Children – The New York Center for Children (NYCC) is the only independent center in New York City to provide free, comprehensive evaluation and therapy services to child victims of physical and sexual abuse and their families, for as long as their healing requires.

New York City Audubon – New York City Audubon, an independent nonprofit organization affiliated with National Audubon Society as an urban chapter, works for the protection of wild birds and habitat in the five boroughs, improving the lives of New Yorkers.

Prep for Prep – Prep for Prep develops ethical and effective leaders who reflect our diverse society for the enduring benefit of all.

The annual Strategy Challenge is also held in the UK where earlier this month, Morgan Stanley concluded the sixth annual UK Strategy Challenge, benefiting five London-based nonprofits. Cancer Research UK won the competition, which took place at Morgan Stanley’s Canary Wharf offices in London. Since its launch in 2009, the U.S. and UK programs have cumulatively delivered more than 108,000 hours of service to 142 nonprofit organizations.

For more on the Morgan Stanley Strategy Challenge, click here.

Morgan Stanley is a leading global financial services firm providing investment banking, securities, wealth management and investment management services. With offices in more than 41 countries, the Firm's employees serve clients worldwide including corporations, governments, institutions and individuals. For more information about Morgan Stanley, please visit

Media Relations Contact: Katherine Stueber, 212.761-1349,

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