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Stigma Podcast - Mental Health

Aug 18, 2021

Today’s guest is Elyse Cohen, VP of Social Impact and Inclusion at Rare Beauty by Selena Gomez and a mental health advocate.  Elyse is an expert on purpose driven brands, social impact, and has been hand selected by Selena Gomez to lead the impact efforts at Rare Beauty and the Rare Impact Fund addressing mental health. Previously Elyse has worked at the White House for First Lady Michelle Obama as Deputy Director of the former first lady’s legacy Let’s Move initiative, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, and various marketing agencies leading social impact initiatives and leveraging business and celebrity assets to create change on critical issues.

You can connect with Elyse here:  LinkedIn

Links mentioned in the show: GoFundMe, Rare Beauty Website

What If Fellowship:



  1. We talk about Rare Beauty as a purpose driven brand, The Rare Impact Fund which addresses access and gaps in mental health, and the growth of the brand over time. We also discuss ways for people to get involved with the growth of the Rare Impact Fund.

  2. Elyse shares her background, both personal and professional, and why mental health is so personally important to her and her family.

  3. As part of her work, Elyse has mapped out who is doing what, and who is being impactful in the mental health space for the purpose of knowing where to deploy Rare Impact Fund capital. Elyse shares some of the insights she gained by doing that work including which companies are doing great work in the mental health space and where she wants to see capital deployed.

  4. We discuss barriers to mental health care including stigma, cost of care and access in our current system, and what we need to do to address the issue of stigma around mental health.

  5. Elyse shares about what the Rare Impact Fund plans to do with the capital that is raised and what benefits will come from these actions.

  6. We discuss the lack of practitioners, why there is such a deficit in this field, and what changes could be made to fill the gap.

  7. Elyse talks about the white space that still exists in mental health especially in education and technology, and why filling these spaces with more support will be beneficial in the long term.


Connect with the Stigma Podcast in the following ways: Website, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Email, What If Fellowship

Connect with host Stephen Hays here:
Stephen Hays Personal Website, Twitter, LinkedIn, What If Ventures (Mental Health Venture Fund)