Rebuilding the Topple

When I started Topplers in 2008, with the help of some good friends, I had no idea what to expect. But I knew one thing… When you have the courage to put yourself out there, to start small, to trust that others will join you, good things will come. And that’s exactly what happened.

From 2008 through 2014, Topplers built a community of people who believed in the power of the Domino Theory concept. People from all over got involved by taking small actions that added up over time and positively impacted many lives. Each year our aspirations grew, donations increased, our efforts expanded, and things were looking up. Mostly…

After seven years, we hit a rough patch. It became clear that our strategy had some flaws. It was now time to step back and regroup. So, we slowed everything down and decided to solely focus on our most mature “branch” of the Topple: The Domino Award. As a result, the 2015 Domino Award was a huge success, but the bigger Topplers concept was in holding pattern.

Ramping down was disappointing for sure, but we knew that is was time to rethink our approach and restructure of the organization. However, as inevitable as it is that all things come to an end (usually proceeded by a fair amount of chaos), it is also certain that there will be a “rebirth” after a time of “emptiness.” So, we embraced the emptiness and trusted that things would eventually start back up stronger than ever when the time was right.

And that time is now.

With renewed energy and optimism we’re taking small actions aligned to our mission:

Topplers connects people who have inspiring ideas with people around the world standing ready to help make those ideas become reality.  We use our Domino Theory framework to organize our efforts, and to inspire people to join our community. We are dedicated to finding ways to demonstrate that small actions add up, and that anyone has the ability to make our world a better place.

In support of this mission, currently our efforts are now focused on:

What can you expect next from Topplers? We will:

  • Continue to grow our reach on social media (Facebook and other platforms).
  • Mobilize the Topplers community to help make someone’s inspiring idea a reality.
  • Build our community through partnerships with other non-profits.
  • Pursue opportunities to talk to groups of people so we can inspire and motivate them to find ways to grow their impact.

If you would like to help us build momentum, here are few things you can do today:

  • If you haven’t already, follow and engage with Topplers’ Facebook page (like, share, comment).
  • Join our community by creating an account on our sign-up website.
  • Sign up for the website advisory council (coming soon).
  • At the very least, “Think like a Toppler!” This means developing a mindset of seeing the world through the lens of Domino Theory and seeking ways to take small actions knowing that your efforts will set in motion more actions.

I never thought this would be easy, but I always knew that Topplers was a personal “calling” of sorts. I’m finding that life has a strange way of providing opportunities to remind me that helping people is one of the most important things I can do. So, just like it was back in 2008, I have no idea exactly what will happen next. But, I’m taking small actions, like writing this blog post, and one way or another I know things will add up.

I invite you to join me in revitalizing Topplers – an exciting new phase is underway!

Posted in Topplers News.

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“It’s generally a good idea to change the passwords from time to time, and it’s really important to pick a strong password. A strong password has a mixture of letters, numbers, and special symbols, and it’s long. Length is more important than anything else, because brute force attacks work faster against shorter passwords.”.

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The beer company said “Born the Hard Way” has been in the works for almost a year and was not intended to make a political statement. Headquarters on Park Avenue in New York, will carry through and run the spot during Sunday’s game. The company’s CEO is Brazilian born financier Carlos Brito..

“There’s not a whole lot that they can do,” he said of the dairies. “If they had an option besides Hispanic workers, they may have already gone that way. Chappelle said he knew of several laborers who were detained while they were in a Lancaster pharmacy late last year still under the Obama administration..

The source claims Wilson previously spoke of deaths of innocent women and children Cheap Football Jerseys as collateral damage. 7, 2012: Abukhdair tries to leave for Jordan but is turned down by the airline. He has a four hour interview with agents but did not reveal the plot.

Unilever, the consumer goods giant behind brands such as Dove, Ben Jerry’s and Marmite, is making a big push toward more sustainable packaging. Company sells billions of products in single use sachets each year, including cosmetics and food products, particularly in developing and emerging markets. It says that it has now developed new technology to recycle them, which will prevent packaging from ending up in our wholesale youth football jerseys oceans or in landfill.

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In all likelihood, these local liquor titanium 450ml cup stores that have been overcharging by SEVERAL DOLLARS per bottle might have to get more competitive. Maybe ole Mr. Hammond won be able to buy another $100,000 car this year or he may have to cut back on that Italian vaction but I quite sure, he be just fine.

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The 1920s was also the time of the move from bulky biplane to sleek monoplane. “How can we best shape an aircraft body and wings,” designers wondered, “in order to reduce the amount of drag through the air?” The key word here would be streamlining. Streamlined shapes reduce the amount of resistance experienced by an airfoil and in the process increase speed and lift.

At a time when some universities are being cheap jerseys from china criticized for allowing too much industry supported research, Danzon notes that in the case of research on pharmaceutical prices in different countries, there is only one source of data IMS Health, a market research company based in Plymouth Meeting, Pa. The company reports on pharmaceutical sales in more than 70 countries based on audits of retail pharmacies and other channels. “Because these data are expensive, a pharmaceutical company has to sponsor the study,” Danzon says, noting that the methods used in her research were based primarily on calculating standard price indices, similar to those used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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The goal is to increase competition, lower costs and expand access to devices for people with mild to moderate hearing loss, Grassley said cheap jerseys china in a prepared statement. Nearly two thirds of people with severe hearing loss many of them elderly report being unable to afford the devices. The cost is generally “bundled” with professional fees for evaluation, fitting and follow up care..

More >>Better Business BureauBetter Business BureauSince the founding of the first BBB in 1912, the BBB system has proven that the majority of marketplace problems can be solved fairly through the use of voluntary self regulation and consumer education. More >>Since the founding of the first BBB in 1912, the BBB system has proven that the majority of marketplace problems can be solved fairly through the use of voluntary self regulation and consumer education. More >>.

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No changes are coming in the short term

Finding a cheap flight can be tricky Do homework to get best deals

DALLAS As families and individuals start to book summer travel, a debate is rising about whether airlines make it too hard to choose the most affordable options.

Airlines say the Internet has made pricing transparent and air travel is a bargain.

Consumer advocates and lawmakers counter that comparing fees for things like baggage and extra legroom a growing part of the cost of a trip can be difficult, especially when travelers don’t buy their ticket directly from the airline.

No changes are coming in the short term, leaving travelers to plot their own strategies for finding the best prices. As always, it helps to plan ahead and consider whether you need extra services that might add to your cost.

Some old strategies are losing value due to changes in the way airlines operate.

The notion that Wednesday (or Tuesday) is the best day to buy your ticket isn’t always true anymore. As more airlines base loyalty programs on how much you spend, not how many miles you fly, it has become harder for many leisure travelers to earn free flights.

Know what comes with your seat by reading the fine print on the airline website. A cheap ticket that doesn’t include checked baggage might not be such a bargain.

Delta Air Lines (and soon American and United) has a lower “basic economy” fare. “It looks cheap, but it’s got a whole bunch of restrictions on it,” says Patrick Surry, the chief data scientist at Hopper, a travel research firm in Cambridge, Mass. “It’s impossible to change it, you don’t get a seat assignment, and you can’t pay to upgrade. It’s buyer beware you need to do your homework.”

Be flexible with dates and destinations. Flying to cheap jerseys tourist destinations will almost certainly be cheaper and less crowded in September or even August than in July. That is of little help, however, to families with school age children.

Check the budget airlines. For example, if you’re flying to Europe this year, Iceland’s WOW air and Norwegian Air Shuttle have added routes across the Atlantic.

“They may not be the most convenient or comfortable, but they may offer some attractive savings,” says Henry Harteveldt, a travel analyst in San Francisco. He cautions that travelers wanting lots of optional services may find it’s cheaper to stick with the older, more familiar airlines.

If you haven’t done so yet, follow the Twitter accounts of the airlines on your intended route and sign up for alerts from fare tracking services there are several of those. That way you’ll learn about a flash sale before it ends. She factors in the extra fee for advance seat assignments when flying on the discount airlines that won’t let you pick a seat for free.

Costs can rise quickly for a family. Want to sit together on a low fare airline? Seat assignments run $2 to $100 each round trip on Spirit and $12 and up on rival Frontier, although Frontier offers a discounted package of extras. ticket costs $200 on American, Delta or United but is free on Southwest.

Fees for certain seats and other items can vary widely or be waived depending on whether you belong to an airline’s loyalty program and whether you’re an elite member. Even using the airline’s branded credit card can make a difference. Your fees might be waived on one airline but not another. Department of Transportation about consumer issues. “That makes it next to impossible for consumers to comparison shop. There is no single site for anyone to go to.”

Consumer advocates are waiting for a Transportation Department rule that they believe will require airlines to provide information about fees to third parties like online travel agencies, which they say would make comparison shopping easier. But any such rule is not expected to take effect until late 2016 or after.

Congress is unlikely to settle the debate. This month, a Senate committee blocked a proposal to require Transportation Department approval of fees, a vote that pleased the airline industry.

Melanie Hinton, a spokeswoman for the trade group, says customers can already choose among airlines and select different combinations of prices and amenities to suit their needs.

The current system is working, Hinton says, because “we are seeing the highest number of people flying since the Great Recession. Airfare remains a bargain.”

ArticlesDeputies: Man, 64, angry at playful children, shoots family members in Goose Creek area15 C 17s departing from Joint Base Charleston on Thursday morning will drop paratroopers from North CarolinaCharleston County School District settles James Winbush defamation lawsuit for $100,000Mount Pleasant Paintball closes, less than 2 weeks after owner is charged with criminal sexual misconductDeveloper to sell West Ashley’s ‘Dead Pig’ site to city of Charleston, avoiding eminent domain fightDeadly legacy: Savannah River site near Aiken one of the most contaminated places on EarthNo. 5 seeded Clemson baseball falls to No. 9 seeded Duke in ACC Baseball Tournament to complicate postseason possibilitiesStormy conditions in Charleston area to continue into Wednesday, National Weather Service saysDylann Roof appeals conviction, death sentence in Emanuel AME Church massacreCharleston police seeking tips in home invasion, sex assault reported in West Ashley.

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Topplers Steps Up For Random Acts of Kindness Week

It’s national Random Acts of Kindness week. To help get you started with some ideas for how to participate, here are a few ideas from the Topplers Staff and Board of Directors:

RAK candy cane“In Denver on the 16th street mall I handed out giant candy canes. I gave some to people having lunch, another to a street performer, and another to a random person on the street. It brought a smile to everyone’s face. Hopefully that tipped forward a few more random acts of kindness.”

-Herb Morreale, Founder and Board Chair

“I stopped last week to help a man on the street navigate a large ladder through a construction gate. I had to temporarily halt traffic and hold open some fences, but he made it and gave a genuine “thank you” for stopping to assist.”

-Katherine Holden, Board Member

“At the grocery store I saw a man in a motorized cart struggling to reach something from a high shelf. I asked if could help and helped him grab items from the rest of the aisle before I headed to check out.”

– Storey Blackwell, Executive Director

“I bought a coworker some surprise flowers today to help her have a speedy recover after surgery. They were yellow tulips and she was so surprised and delighted!”

-Katherine Holden, Board Member

Posted in Topplers News.

Meet The 2014/2015 Domino Award Winners

Julia HeilJulia Heil is a sophomore at the University of Colorado Boulder majoring in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology as well as Computer Science. After completing an internship as a storyboard writer for a mobile application called “Zombie Joe”, Julia took an interest in video game programming and design. She is also interested in pursuing computational biology as a combination of her majors. Julia is also a member of CU’s equestrian team, and has enjoyed riding horses since she was young.

Austin HollerAfter earning a business degree and working in the hospitality industry for 2 years, Austin Holler decided, “I wanted to have a greater purpose in this world, giving to it in a way that I know could make a difference,” returning to school to pursue a degree in Computer Science and University of Colorado Boulder. In addition to attending CU Boulder, Austin works full-time and is a budding entrepreneur, with his sights set on receiving his Masters in Computer Science.

Will PreachukWill Preachuk is a Sophomore Computer Science Student at the University of Nebraska Lincoln and a member of both the UNL Honors Program and The Computer Science honors Program. He is currently the main writer for the college radio station’s blog and has a twice monthly music review column. Will is a former bone marrow donor and a spokesman for Be The Match, an organization that works toward getting people into the national bone marrow registry. He is also an avid volunteer for the SQL Server community in his home state of Minnesota and co-authored an article for an upcoming publication of the Professional Association of SQL Server Minnesota’s (PASS-MN) yearly guidebook.


Posted in Topplers Domino Award.

Topplers Seeking Teens With A BIG Idea For Making A Positive Impact on the World

Making a Difference Program to Help Teens With Cancer Set BIG Things In MotionSmiling cancer girl using laptop

Dakota is a high school student who likes spending time outdoors, skiing, and competitive ballroom dancing – she also has Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). While undergoing treatment for her cancer, she’s found a way to give back to all those people who have helped her and her family along the way. Dakota shared her BIG idea with Topplers and is inspiring people from around the country to commit random acts of kindness.

“Going through leukemia has taught me that no matter what, things can always be worse, but that there’s always a silver lining,” she explains. “One of the biggest silver linings I’ve found is finding support from everyone around me. I thought if everyone could just have a small glimpse of this kind of support in their own lives it would motivate them to do good and pass it on to others. This is important to me because I think it will be very therapeutic — not only for me, but also for the people that surround me in my everyday life.”

The idea started in 2012, when Donna, a Pediatric Oncology Nurse, noticed that her young patients were spending long stretches of time at the hospital during their treatments and recovery time. The nature of the treatments leaves them confined to their beds and weakens their immune systems, so they don’t get to leave the hospital. She started thinking about how these patients could pass the time, focusing their energy in a positive way, while staying connected to their friends and communities.

“Working as a Pediatric Oncology Nurse for many years has made me realize a need that has been overlooked. The patients I’ve had the pleasure to work with possess such strong spirits and sense of the world around them. Whether it’s the diagnosis that creates this awareness, their personalities, or other life circumstances, I can’t say. One thing I’ve seen over and over again is the strong desire to give back to the community and/or others facing the same situation. Parents and families return to the hospital with cookies for the staff, homemade pillow cases, or hats for the newly bald children,” she recalls. “All of these gestures are greatly appreciated, but lack the longevity that many patients desire. The Making A Difference Program allows children and their families to give back and to stay connected in a way that is far reaching. It gives them the opportunity to stay in touch with their social circles, while at the same time offering a network of support to others, reaching a much broader audience.”

Topplers is seeking more teens being treated for cancer, who have a BIG idea they want to share. “Whether they are passionate about the environment, education, or poverty, Topplers has a community of action-takers ready to help move these young people’s BIG ideas forward,” says Topplers Executive Director, Storey Blackwell. “It has been such a pleasure to work with Dakota and to see the amazing support the Topplers community has brought to her idea, that we want to bring this opportunity to more teens with cancer.”

Teens or their family members can submit their ideas here to Topplers. Anyone interested in taking small, measurable actions to bring these BIG ideas to life can join the Topplers community here. To see a video and learn more about the Making A Difference program, visit

For more information or if you have questions, feel free to contact Storey Blackwell, Executive Director:


Posted in Making A Difference.

Topplers Announces Winners of the Annual Domino Award Prize for Computer Science Students

Students awarded trips to SXSW Interactive for their essays honoring the contributions of Richard Stallman, Paul Baran, and Barbara Liskov.

Boulder, CO – January 9, 2014 – Topplers ( announced today that it has awarded the 2014/2015 Domino Award for Computer Science. The Domino Award was founded in 2002 to encourage students to “think big” by seeing how seemingly simple technology advancements in the past have spurred chains of momentum that have added up to significant impacts in modern society and to inspire these students to see the potential they have to make a difference in the world through their future work.

Nationwide, over 100 Students from 44 schools participated in this year’s competition. Winning essays honored Richard Stallman, a pioneer in the open source movement, Paul Baran, a pioneer in the development of computer networks, and Barbara Liskov, a professor at MIT whose work designing programming languages led to the development of object oriented programming. Topplers congratulates winners Austin Holler and Julia Heil, students at University of Colorado, Boulder and Will Preachuk, a student at University of Nebraska, Lincoln. The winners will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to see tech innovation first-hand at the SXSW Interactive festival this coming spring.

Topplers was excited to offer the Domino Award to students nationwide for the first time in its 12 year history. “When we started the Domino Award at University of Colorado, we didn’t realize we were setting in motion a domino topple that would eventually bring this unique opportunity to students across the country. It is truly amazing that the Award has been able to grow so that we can honor the significant contributions of past computer scientists and use this to help inspire more students to think about the impact they can make as computer scientists,” said Herb Morreale, founder of Topplers and the Domino Award.

Topplers would like to thank Return Path for joining as a sponsor, University of Colorado’s College of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Department of Computer Science for continued support of the program, professors Clayton Lewis (University of Colorado, Boulder), Ken Anderson (University of Colorado, Boulder), and Andre van der Hoek (University of California, Irvine) for their guidance and promotion of the program, and volunteers Ian Smith (2012 winner), Nithin Jilla (2013 winner), Andy Sautens (Return Path), and John Gary (SendGrid) for their help reading and scoring entries.

“The Domino Award is one of Topplers’ programs dedicated to inspiring individuals to make a positive impact on the world. Topplers’ sponsors and supporters of the Domino Award have helped to bring this inspiration to students across the country and the reception of our program in its first year offered at a national level has been extraordinary,” said Topplers’ Executive Director, Storey Blackwell.

Topplers is seeking additional sponsors to further expand the award and bring this inspiring opportunity to thousands more computer science students. For more information on sponsoring or participating in the Domino Award program, visit

About Our Sponsor Return PathReturnPathLogo

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Posted in Topplers Domino Award.

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And a chilling effect on GDP growth, now on track for a meager 0.8% rise for fourth quarter 2014, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.But what about the positives? Cheaper oil prices are a boon to consumers paying less for gasoline, which should give retailers a lift. Economy, this should be great news. What’s taking so long?By one measure, it’s already happening.Yardeni Research calculates that global oil revenues have plunged at a $2.2 trillion annualized rate from the summer of 2014.

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Posted in Uncategorized.

2014/2015 Domino Award Competition Opens September 15th

Topplers is excited to announce that this year’s Domino Award competition for computer science students will begin accepting essays on September 15th.

Instructions for submitting an essay will be available on the Student page.

In the meantime, check out this video showing some of the fun our Award winners have had on their trips:


Posted in Topplers Domino Award, Topplers News.