A world where everyone can give and receive help through the power of community.
Lotsa Helping Hands powers online caring Communities that help restore health and balance to caregivers’ lives. Our service brings together caregivers and volunteers through online Communities that organize daily life during times of medical crisis or caregiver exhaustion in neighborhoods and communities worldwide. Caregivers benefit from the gifts of much needed help, emotional support, and peace of mind, while volunteers find meaning in giving back to those in need.
Profound ideas often come from dealing with profound challenges. Lotsa’s story begins with Barry Katz. When Barry’s wife Carole was diagnosed with ovarian cancer, their world quickly turned upside down. For four years, Barry, their two daughters — aged 12 and 9 — and many friends and family devoted endless energy and support during her multiple surgeries, chemotherapies, doctor visits, and ovarian cancer fundraisers. When she lost her battle, Barry reflected on the challenges he faced as a caregiver, managing the overwhelming offers of help, keeping up with the endless phone tag, sharing updates, and staying organized.
Could there be a better way to support others who were coping with caregiving? Barry enlisted the help of his long-time friend and business associate Hal Chapel, himself a caregiver and successful technology entrepreneur. Together they founded and launched Lotsa Helping Hands in 2005.
Motivated by their belief that the power of community empowers the individual, and the growing acceptance of social entrepreneurship to successfully link business objectives with social change, Hal and Barry explored various models that could serve both the needs of caregivers and the mounting awareness within the corporate world of the importance of addressing the caregiver crisis. As the company became operational, they invited Paul Burney and Brooks Kenny to join the Founding Team to help bring their vision to a broader audience.
Here at Lotsa Helping Hands, a day doesn’t go by when we don’t talk about the power of community. We’ve got one here too — our own team of dedicated people who work each and every day to achieve our vision. We have broad, deep and diverse experience, yet share a fierce commitment to promoting the power of community so that everyone gets the help they need. Read on to learn more about our team.
Co-Founder and CEO
Hal Chapel is Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Lotsa Helping Hands, a social entrepreneurial company powering online caring communities that help restore health and balance to caregivers’ lives. As CEO, Hal is responsible for Lotsa’s overall strategy, operations, and business model as well as sales, product management, and engineering.
A technology visionary throughout his career, Hal founded and served as the CEO of various companies, several of which produced major paradigm shifts in information technology. Prior to developing Lotsa Helping Hands, he founded Boston-based Xevo Corp. A key player in developing the concept of internet computing, Xevo focused on enabling the technology needed by global application service providers (ASPs) to deliver remotely hosted application services over the internet. Hal was responsible for raising $45 million in three venture capital rounds, establishing four regional offices in the U.S. and Europe, and building a best-in-class team. Hal grew Xevo into a leader in the field, holding the chairmanship of the ASP Industry Consortium, winning numerous industry awards, and securing significant customer contracts with AT&T, Bell Canada, British Telecom, Deutsche Telecom, and Qwest, He also signed major co-development partnerships with Microsoft, Cisco, and Compaq.
Hal is nationally acknowledged as an authority on the caregiving industry and the impact of community networks. He is dedicated to understanding the challenges that family caregivers face and how innovations in technology that support community can address those challenges.
He grew up in a caregiving family, is himself a family caregiver, and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Caregiver Action Network (formerly the National Family Caregivers Association).
Hal has also had a lifelong commitment to the idea that the power of community empowers the individual. Having grown up in a town where neighbors looked after each others’ children, where his parents’ household was the center of the extended family’s activities, where the school community was the foundation for his own development, he has continued that commitment through various experiences including once living in an intentional community and presiding over various local nonprofit organizations, and of course, leading Lotsa Helping Hands.
Hal earned his undergraduate degree in philosophy from Harvard University. He later returned to Harvard to pursue multidisciplinary studies in education, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience, receiving a Masters of Education in 1996.
Based on an extremely personal experience — caring for his wife while she battled ovarian cancer — Barry enlisted the talents of long-time business associate Hal Chapel to address building caring communities for caregivers. Barry’s influence is central to the company’s identity as a compassion-driven organization. Barry continues to have an active role, contributing to user and community experience in product design, recruitment and technical support.
Prior to Lotsa Helping Hands, Barry co-founded Xevo Corp. with Chapel and assumed the position of Vice President of Administration, where he helped grow Xevo into a 100-plus person company that became a worldwide leader in internet computing. His leadership helped Xevo earn a reputation as one of the most desirable companies to work for in the Boston area. At The Career Group, LTD., a technology recruiting and consulting group, which he also co-founded, those same abilities were in full view as he built the company’s reputation into a powerhouse resource for early stage computer and software development companies. Several of its clients were subsequently acquired by industry titans Microsoft and 3M.
Drawing on his intimate association with caregiver support issues and his technical prowess, he continues to be a sought-after inspirational speaker, sharing his perspective on the challenges of caregiving. Barry has spoken to groups about his personal experience, most notably as the Keynote Speaker at the Harvard Medical School/BIDMC National Celebration of Life event celebrating patients and caregivers. In 2009, Barry penned his personal story for Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Cancer Book.
Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer,
A member of the Founding Team of Lotsa Helping Hands and nationally recognized expert in cause marketing and strategic partnering, Brooks Kenny is the force behind the company’s successful enterprise and nonprofit marketing initiatives. As Executive Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer, Brooks directs the company’s worldwide branding, marketing, and social media efforts by developing strategic partnerships, creating business growth opportunities, and expanding brand reach. Brooks is credited with enhancing the company’s offerings to the nonprofit sector, securing high-profile partners including the Alzheimer’s Association, Muscular Dystrophy Association, and the National Health Council. She also developed an effective sponsorship model for industry partners who wish to contribute while gaining exposure to the company’s growing base of one million members.
She is nationally recognized as a subject matter expert in caregiving, social media and nonprofit/for profit relationships bringing her deep knowledge of cause marketing to Lotsa’s key relationships. Prior to Lotsa, Brooks founded and served as president of Promoting Public Causes, Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm that provided communications and marketing expertise to organizations whose programs benefit society. She has implemented cause marketing programs for companies such as Fannie Mae and Wyeth and developed communications and branding approaches for nonprofit organizations including Capital Hospice, the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies, and Washington Hospital Center. Brooks has served in a leadership capacity for various nonprofit governing and oversight committees and authored a communications and marketing training manual for nonprofit leaders.
In 2009, Brooks received the National Family Caregivers Association’s Founder’s Award. More recently, the Washington Business Journal named Brooks one of its ‘40 Under 40’ top business leaders exhibiting outstanding performance for their companies in the metropolitan region.
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