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Our Origin Story by Paul Hogan, Chief Hope Officer
Welcome to SetPath Journey, where Chief Hope Officer Paul Hogan will share the highlights and challenges of starting up a new nonprofit aimed at pouring purpose, hope, and direction into young adults aged entering their defining decade.
In late spring of 2020, an unprecedented worldwide pandemic, economic dislocation and lockdowns, exacerbated by racial unrest and a tempestuous American election year, swept all of us into a disorienting maelstrom.
All across the US, companies, schools, churches, and other institutions were being challenged to “do something” to address COVID as well as social inequities, but most leaders did not know where to start.
In early June, 2020, the Building Champions’ leadership team challenged CEO and Founder Daniel Harvaky with a call to action: It was time to share what Building Champions had learned about effective leadership—free of charge, to young adults.
For over two decades, Building Champions had coached thousands of corporate executives to become better humans and better leaders through life-planning and mentoring.
BC had a proven method to promote positive change through its Life Planning tool, and deep experience in coaching people to live healthier, more balanced lives.
Frequently, Daniel’s clients asked him, “Why didn’t I learn about life-planning when I was 22?!”
Now, in the face of the towering crises of 2020, Daniel knew it was time to introduce SetPath to the generation entering their “defining decade,” those 18 to 28.
The vision behind SetPath had been percolating in Daniel’s mind for years, because, in addition to their own four children, Daniel and Sheri Harkavy had supported a dozen other teens in their home.
From personal experience, Daniel knew that young people between 18 and 28 face skyrocketing rates of depression and anxiety, which clouds their educational and career prospects.
So, in 2020, Daniel announced the founding of SetPath, whose mission is “to guide young adults to discover purpose, hope, and direction through life-planning and mentorship,” free of charge.
Daniel’s sons Dylan and Wesley, as well as Kristin Moreno of Building Champions, took up the charge and began to create the SetPath model, including a life-planning website designed for young adults, whom they called “Planners,” and the mentors who lead them through the life-planning process, known as “Guides.”
In late spring 2021, the SetPath staff and devoted volunteers ran a beta Guide/Planner program. In summer 2021, SetPath received Federal EIN status as an approved 501(c)3 nonprofit, and began to attract significant financial support from donors with whom the SetPath mission resonates.
The team worked with MatterSupply web developers to build an online life-planning platform for young adults, based on the Building Champions Life Plan tool.
In January of 2022, SetPath hired Paul Hogan as its “Chief Hope Officer.” For the previous 25 years, Paul was an administrator at Jesuit High in Portland, serving as Principal from 2012-December of 2021. Soon after, SetPath selected Dayne Scanlon and Kendra Vollstedt as SetPath’s first full-time Staff Guides, and SetPath expanded its outreach to young adults.
Now, SetPath is investing significantly in two web development projects—the robust, interactive life-planning tool for Planners, as well as a learning management system that will provide a certification program for volunteer Guides. By Fall of 2022, these two platforms will be combined into one robust, interactive web platform at www.setpath.org.
We hope soon to be able to offer SetPath to a much wider group of Planners and Guides, though it will take us several months to get there.
Meanwhile, I invite you to follow along by reading this blog as we continue our exciting quest to provide purpose, hope, and direction in a world sorely in need of all three.
With deep hope and gratitude,
Paul J. Hogan
Chief Hope Officer