Northeast Arc, the nonprofit that serves more than 10,000 people with disabilities and autism in Massachusetts, today announced that Multiple will power Northeast Arc’s fifth annual The Arc Tank, the pitch competition that funds up to $200,000 for big, bold and innovative ideas that will improve the well-being of people with disabilities and autism.

Multiple, the San Francisco-based nonprofit catalyzing autism innovations, will promote and expand Arc Tank, a “Shark Tank” style competition that invites individuals, nonprofits, businesses, healthcare systems, educators and others worldwide to submit their ideas across a variety of areas, including safety and well-being, employment, technology, housing, transportation, or socialization for individuals with disabilities.

A panel of experts comprised of investors, philanthropists and local community leaders will judge the applications, select finalists and determine the final outcomes of the contest. Returning experts include MaryLou Sudders, former Secretary of Health and Human Services in Massachusetts; Ralph James, a philanthropist; and Matthey Kennedy, founder of Kennedy Merchant Partners, Board member of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library Foundation. Joining the panel this year is James Keith, Special Olympian and one of the stars of the recent movie ‘Champions.’ The panel is supported by David Chang, entrepreneur and angel investor.

Northeast Arc is among the largest Arcs in the U.S., and offers support and services to individuals with disabilities or autism and their families, helping them as inclusive members of society through their lifespan, choosing for themselves how to live, learn, work, play, and socialize.

“Through our award-winning work serving people with disabilities and autism, we innately understand the need for innovation that enhances life quality, provides inclusive opportunities, and supports equity in the community,” said Tim Brown, Chief Innovation + Strategy Officer at Northeast Arc. “With Multiple’s expertise in nurturing founders and connecting them to a wider investing ecosystem, we know Arc Tank is in good hands and can scale this wonderful program to the national recognition it deserves.”

Since its launch in 2017 with a $1 million donation from Steven P. Rosenthal to create the Changing Lives Fund, The Arc Tank has awarded more than $850,000 to proposals that promise to break down barriers for people with disabilities who are too often marginalized, not included as equal participants in everyday life, and prevented from taking advantage of opportunities.

“We’re thrilled for the opportunity to join forces with Northeast Arc and host Arc Tank, one of the first ever programs aimed at surfacing new solutions for the disability community. They’re placing their trust in us to leverage global momentum of innovation to make Arc Tank an even more impactful accelerator and transform the lives of people with autism and developmental disabilities through innovative technologies and ideas,” said Heidi Kershaw, CEO of Multiple.

Arc Tank pplications are due on October 6, 2023. Click here to apply.

Finalists will present their ideas in front of a judging panel, open to the public, on December 5, 2023 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, a founding partner in The Arc Tank competition.

About Multiple

Multiple is a non-profit dedicated to catalyzing early-stage innovation and supporting technologies for the autism and neurodiversity community at scale. Multiple is the engine for innovation—a global community of dedicated families, entrepreneurs, funders, and experts collaborating to solve the greatest challenges for people with autism. Learn more at

About The Northeast Arc

Northeast Arc (NeArc) changes lives for people with disabilities — and children at risk of developing them — and their families. The agency, which opened the Center for Linking Lives at Liberty Tree Mall in Danvers in 2020, serves thousands of people in nearly 200 Massachusetts cities and towns each year. NeArc is the largest Arc in the state of Massachusetts and one of the largest in the country. Services include: Adult Family Care, the ArcWorks Community Art Center, Autism Services, Black Box Theater, Breaking Grounds Café, Continuous Care Nursing Services, Day Habilitation, Deaf Services, Early Intervention, Employment Services, Family Support, The Learning Center Childcare and Preschool, parcels retail store, Personal Care Assistance, Recreation, Residential, Shared Living and Transition, and Skilled Intermittent Home Health Care. Learn more at

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