Scarlett Lewis founded the nonprofit Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement in honor of her son, Jesse, who was murdered during the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy in December 2012. Shortly after his death, Scarlett decided to be part of the solution to the issues that we’re seeing in our society — that also caused the tragedy — and turned it into an opportunity to build a culture of love, resilience, forgiveness, and connection in our communities at a time when it is needed the most.
Scarlett became an advocate for social and emotional learning (SEL) and character development to help children manage their emotions, feel connected, and have healthy, meaningful relationships. She created the Choose Love For Schools program, a no cost, comprehensive, lifespan, next generation character and social emotional development (CSED) program that teaches children how to thoughtfully respond with love in any situation by using the Choose Love Formula (Courage + Gratitude + Forgiveness + Compassion-in-Action), and offer ways for children to handle adversity, have courageous conversations, and to respond with love. Choose Love extends beyond the classroom through additional no-cost programs, including programs for the home, communities, athletics, and the workplace. In addition, the movement offers Choose Love C.A.R.E.S. (Cultivating Authentic Relationships in the Education System) and Experiential Educator Wellness Workshops for school leaders and educators, and multiple extension programs. The Choose Love programs have been accessed in all 50 states and in more than 120 countries, reaching 3 million children.
Scarlett Lewis is the author of Nurturing Healing Love: A Mother’s Journey of Hope & Forgiveness, a memoir of her journey toward choosing love and forgiveness; From Sandy Hook to the World: How the Choose Love Movement Transforms Lives, an in-depth look at how Scarlett founded the Movement and its impact around the world today; and Rose’s Foal, a children’s book, with photographs by Scarlett Lewis, that tells the poignant story of a beloved horse and her newborn foal.
Since the tragedy, Scarlett has spoken across the U.S. and internationally to diverse audiences sharing her empowering story and the organization’s far-reaching programs, urging everyone to become part of the solution to the issues the world is facing. Scarlett has spoken at multiple national, statewide, and community-based events including hundreds of talks at schools, addressing educators and administrators.
In 2022, Scarlett was named to Bloomberg Businessweek’s 2022 Bloomberg 50, and was a featured speaker at the New York Times DealBook Summit 2022 alongside many of our world leaders, CEOs of businesses and emerging leaders. In 2021, Scarlett was named a Forbes 50 over 50 Impact Honoree, one of 50 women leading the way with impact and changing their communities and the world in ways big and small through social entrepreneurship, law, advocacy and education.