Tom Kamber has arguably done more to help seniors cross the digital divide than pretty much anyone. He founded OATS in 2004 and has built the Chelsea, NY-based organisation into a $10m / year non-profit, operating out of a gleaming tech center in the heart of Chelsea that is more 'Apple Store' than 'senior center'. He's fresh from clinching a $3m deal with Humana to bring a million older Americans online, but you get the sense from him that he's only just getting started (after all 42% of older Americans don't have a wired Internet access, meaning there's 20m+ people who need good connectivity).
In the video interview below we cover a range of topics, including:
- The founding story and background to OATS & Senior Planet
- How they got 10,000 New Yorkers online at the start of the pandemic - practically overnight - by reinventing the whole system
- Why he thinks OATS is one of the most effective social enterprises at tracking and measuring social outcomes
- How solid impact tracking was the genesis of the $3m deal with Humana
- His recommendations for go-to innovators in the space from the US and UK
- How San Antonio and other cities are harnessing connectivity and reaping broader rewards
- Why trust not technology is the "killer app" for breaking through with the digital divide
- How we will likely be seeing aggregators and intermediaries in aging services like we've seen in other non-profits such as housing.
There's a lot here, we hope you enjoy. You can reach Tom at OATS.org and seniorplanet.org or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to be connected.