Founder and Host

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David Lavin, Founder Spark Global LLC, New York and Lara Espirito Santo, Spark, Rio de Janeiro.

David Lavin, Founder Spark Global LLC, New York and Lara Espirito Santo, Spark, Rio de Janeiro.


Listen to the Talk 2 Brazil interview by Tom Reaoch with David Lavin and Lara Espirito Santo Dec. 2, 2013
David Lavin is the Founder and Director of SPARK Global LLC, an impact innovation consultancy and startup greenhouse with headquarters in New York and Rio de Janeiro. Spark works with clients to develop new products, services and strategies that create measurable social impact and also develops scalable for-profit impact businesses.  
David’s background includes management of high-level multi-sectoral partnerships, design and implementation of monitoring and evaluation systems, and social enterprise strategy. 
Lara Espirito Santo manages Spark's Rio de Janeiro office. Prior to Spark, Lara worked directly with the President of Instituto Pereira Passos (IPP) an arm of the Rio City government.  There, Lara developed partnership strategies, devised new monitoring and evaluation systems and created the new project management office.
Lara developed partnerships with corporate and non-profit organizations in the recently pacified favelas, working to stimulate entrepreneurship and capacity-building at the base of the pyramid, and support the development of new social enterprises.
Before founding Spark, David led strategy and operations in Brazil for the US-Brazil Joint Initiative on Urban Sustainability (JIUS), working across sectors and countries to develop a pipeline for large-scale impact investing in green infrastructure. Previously, he developed programming for the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI).
He holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a Master of International Affairs in Economic and Political Development from Columbia University. He speaks Portuguese, Spanish and English and frequently contributes analysis and commentary about social impact and Brazil to international publications including The Atlantic Online and Brazil’s Valor Economico. He can be reached at david@sparkimpact.com .
 Previously, Lara Espirito Santo was the project manager at Pro-Natura International where she worked with multinational clients on comprehensive impact mitigation and regional economic and social development strategies.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Sciences and Modern History from the University of Manchester and a MSc in Poverty and International Development from the Institute for Development and Policy Management in the UK. 
A born and bred Carioca, she is fluent in English and Portuguese, is an avid cyclist and has a passion for all things food, 

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