Changes Ahead for New Dream

As we approach our 20-year anniversary, we are pleased to share some exciting developments at the Center for a New American Dream.

Since the spring, our board and staff have been immersed in deep strategic planning in an effort to focus our work, increase our impact, and make every penny count toward our ability to achieve our programmatic goals.

Our key takeaways from this process include:

  • We have an engaged, passionate audience of people who are committed to making change in their lives and their communities, and who count on our resources and materials for inspiration and guidance.

  • We have been a trailblazer in our field and are humbled that many of the ideas that we’ve brought to the national conversation are now mainstream, from rising interest in organic food and alternative energy to the growing movement to downsize and simplify. However, there is still an enormous need to minimize needless and wasteful consumption and to foster community and connection in this pursuit.

  • No other organization is focused on shifting consumption at the individual level like we are. There is widespread interest in our positive, inspirational messaging and resources, from our popular Simplify the Holidays campaign to our Kids & Commercialism program, our SoKind alternative gift registry, and our library of webinars, guides, and videos.

  • And yet, it remains challenging to obtain multi-year funding for our work from foundations and other major supporters. Thus, we need to be even more creative and resourceful in the coming years to sustain our programs and to continue to make a difference in people’s lives.

Based on these insights, we have developed a plan to restructure and relaunch the organization that will enable us to optimize our ability to spend time on what is most important, and to most effectively communicate our message to a broad audience.

In the new year, the Center for a New American Dream will formally change its name to “New Dream.”

As part of this transition, we will be streamlining our programs to better respond to your needs and will be restructuring as a fiscally sponsored project of Virginia Organizing, which will enable us to invest more of our resources into our programmatic work. Along with this change, our executive director, Tracy Bowen, who skillfully led us through the planning process and to whom we are deeply indebted, will be moving on. To learn more, please check out our Q&A.

What will not change is New Dream’s longstanding commitment to providing positive, solutions-oriented resources to help individuals and organizations reduce needless consumption, improve well-being, and deepen connections within their communities. Our most popular and salient resources will remain, but we’ll be updating and enhancing our look, our website, and our materials to make them even more relevant, engaging, and useful.

If you have any questions about this process or the changes that are coming, we urge you to read the Q&A on our website. And if you have ideas, feedback, comments, or suggestions to share, we want to hear from you! Please email us at

We say it a lot, but we truly mean it: Our work would not be possible without our deeply engaged and thoughtful supporters. We believe you’ll find New Dream’s work more relevant and timely than ever as we move forward, and we thank you in advance for supporting us through these changes.

Holly Minch, Chair, Board of Directors
Tracy Bowen, Executive Director

P.S. Your feedback is important to us! Please do not hesitate to be in touch with questions, concerns, and ideas. Email us at

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