Award winning WBME on a mission

Founded in 1997 by child advocate/media creator, Alice Ray, and technology innovator and producer, Sarah Berg, Ripple Effects is a multi-award winning, social enterprise (WMBE) dedicated to using emerging technologies to prevent social injury and promote school and life success for all children and youth, especially those most at risk of failure.

How we make it real

Ripple Effects makes it real by providing affordable, trauma-informed, culturally responsive, personalized, evidence-based, digital tools for delivery of social-emotional-behavioral supports and training for both students and staff. Each user can enter through the door of their most pressing concern. A highly accomplished, multi-disciplinary Advisory Board and widely diverse group of Student Contributors help us figure out what to do, and how, and when.

“ amazing example of how technology can be used for meaningful social impact." Chris Knowland, Great Britain Foreign and Commonwealth Office, SF

The values we hold

Ultimately we are in the business of promoting personal and social integrity. Thus it’s more important than for most companies that we walk our talk and model the values we believe in. They include a commitment to excellence, to working for educational equity, evaluating real world efficacy of all our products, providing genuine engagement – without gimmicks – to our users, and holding ourselves to high ethical standards, individually and as an organization. Here’s what we mean by all that.


Quality matters at Ripple Effects, not only in the products we develop, but in the services we offer and the relationships we have with each other. Every program we’ve introduced has either won, or been a finalist for at least one major award, earning us 35 awards from five separate industries; the most recent being the Top TWA Pick of 2016 by Teachers with Apps. Ripple Effects as an organization and CEO, Alice Ray, have also received major awards for entrepreneurial business success, and social leadership.


Before being put on the market, Ripple Effects products are tested in real world settings to make sure they can work. Both government-vetted scientific studies and day-to- day evaluation by actual users demonstrate that, if clients use Ripple Effects, it will work.  Because it works for so many people under so many conditions of use, we are able to offer a money back guarantee of positive outcomes, when used as directed.


We believe that gaining true equity for the disenfranchised is a key part of reducing social injury, from both victim and perpetrator perspectives. That’s why Ripple Effects includes skill training for addressing equity issues –  racial equity, economic justice, civil rights for gay and transgender youth, inclusion for people with disabilities, and protection of religious freedom – along with trauma-informed, context-specific, personal problem solving, and more traditional social-emotional skill training in our programs. Keep up with our ongoing work to promote social justice.


It’s become almost a truism that digital products are either engaging and easy to use, or evidence-based and effective. Ripple Effects digital SEL tools are both. The genuine engagement doesn’t come from the latest electronic bells and whistles, but from deeply involving users in the very personalized process of solving the social-emotional mysteries of their own lives. The tech is engaging, because it is authentic and focused on the one thing that is most important to everyone – themselves.

Ethics in Business

A commitment to honesty, integrity, and the empowerment of others is what drives Ripple Effects’ business decisions. Being a double bottom line business means being equally committed to the social mission and to good business practices. We serve the interests of a wide spectrum of stakeholders: young learners most of all, angel investors for sure, but also education, health and justice organizations, their  administrators, teachers, parents, community interest groups, the earth that hosts us, and of course, our own staff.  The Better Business Bureau, a non-profit organization that works to keep trust in the marketplace on behalf of consumers, has awarded Ripple Effects an A+ rating.

Core team: diverse, experienced, nimble, accomplished

Alice Ray
CEO and Chief Creative Officer

Synthesizes multidisciplinary theory, translates research into engaging experiences, eggs every one else on. Gets tons of award for inviting forth their genius.
A Ray BLOG >

Lew Brentano
Vice president

Activist for the disabled, engineer by training; people person by temperament, helps districts see whether and how our tools can align with and help reach their goals.

Kerry Crespo
Operations Director

Joined as an Administrative Assistant, worked her way up to Operations Director. Had two kids and picked up an MPA along the way.

Priya Ekbote

Heads the Aress Engineering team who helps us stay in step with emerging technologies and makes our products work for as many people, on as many platforms, as possible.

Heidi Johnecheck
Director of Educational Alliances

The educator’s educator, makes sure training and educational materials respond to the needs of users on the ground, and coordinates research to see what works best with whom.

Heidi Raykeil
Director, Content Development

Turns what could be dry concepts into conversational language. Makes sure we say what we mean, and mean what we say. Writes sassy books and articles on the side.

Stefan Cluver
Media Producer and Asset Manager

Keeps track of the many thousand image, text and sound files that makes up our programs, and produces videos in a shorter time than anyone should have to.

Doris Medrano
Logistics Coordinator and Translator

The Voice. Translates program materials into Spanish and records audio. Fits this in between making sure clients get what they’re looking for and meshing everyone’s schedule.

Lisa Wang.

Sees opportunities where others may not. Partner, client, resource, story contributor, or all of the above? Finding ways for schools and partners to be the change together.

Susannah Bettag
Visual Design and UX.

Gives Ripple Effects stuff the cool look and feel that makes it something people actually like to use.

Youth collaborators from Oakland to Appalachia

Diverse youth from Appalachia to Oakland have contributed their true stories, acting, voice talent, content review and production assistance to the development of Ripple Effects interventions. Children as young as four, and youth through their early twenties are a continuing part of our creative community.

Ripple Effects Advisory Board

A strong group of social scientists, educators, technologists, community activists, and civil rights advocates help guide us to the right choices at the right times. We are grateful for the insights of:

Kriste DragonCo-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Citizens of the World Charter Schools
Maurice Elias Author, Edutopia blogger, professor, international leader in SEL in education movement
Alex HernandezProminent Ed Tech Blogger and Partner in Charter School Growth Fund
Kathy HurleyCo-founder, Girls Thinking Global, Author, former Pearson Education Executive
Robert KirtonLeader in boosting achievement of AfAm males and Special Needs students
Richard NyankoriCo-founder, Education Leaders of Color (EdLoc), Executive VP, Insight Education
Chris ThormanTechnology guru and architect of original Whole Spectrum Learning Platform
Rajiv Vinnakota, Co-founder, SEED Foundation, Executive VP, Youth & Engagement Program, Aspen Institute

“ amazing example of how technology can be used for meaningful social impact." Chris Knowland, Great Britain Foreign and Commonwealth Office, SF