Founder’s Back Story

The Short Version (Credentials)

Background in Education: 

  • Designed, Launched, & Led a New Innovative Public School in the Bronx
    • Facilitated the development on an Innovative Arts, STEM, ELA, & Social Studies curriculum
  • Won an “Innovation in Educational Leadership Award” from Apple
  • Featured on Education Nation Today: Today Show
  • Featured in Daily News & Brian Lehrer Show
  • Selected for NYCDOE Advanced Leadership Institute, trained as a Systems District Leader (by Karen Maldonado, Daniella Philips, & Marisol Rosales)
  • Project-based Teacher (Big Picture Advisor) in a Bronx public school

Interested in Children’s Publishing: 

  • Highlights Foundation Illustration Incubator (Scholarship Winner)
  • Attended 21st Century Children’s Nonfiction Conference, Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators National Conference (NY) 2016 & 2017

Business Traction: 

  • Social Entrepreneurship program through Impact Ventures: Communitas America
    • 10K Start-up Accelerator prize for seed funding
  • Finalist for Camelback Ventures

The Long(er) Story

“Upstream Storybooks started as a passion project of mine. As a former school principal, passionate designer, and award-winning educational innovator, with two young children of my own, I was extremely underwhelmed by the educational resources in the PreK-12 space that directly connected to the topics, mindsets, and understandings I needed to discuss with my children most.

I began making my own mini-books and media to share with my children on these topics, and it spiraled from there. Through extensive user-centered design testing and feedback, I realized that Upstream Storybooks unique value proposition was as a “side kick,” supporting organizations that already do important work with children and communities worldwide. The value we could add, is our ability to create storybooks and media that accelerate their impact and expand their reach.

Through the Impact Ventures (Communitas America) Start-up program in the South Bronx and through immense community support and feedback, I was able to give my idea wings. After winning a $10K prize from Communitas America in seed funding, I’ve been able to put Upstream Storybook’s mission in motion.

I am very lucky to have been born in a time and place where even as a young woman my voice was valued, and my gifts and talents were nourished. As the daughter of a white American family who always had healthcare and plentiful resources,  and as a recipient of  20+ years of quality public education,  I recognize and am appreciative of the successes that have resulted from my immense privilege. It’s my hope that I can leverage my many layers of privilege (of historical time period, country of origin, of race, of health & wealth, & education) and seek out diverse perspectives to collaboratively design products that promote a better world.

All of this work has been built off the brilliance of others. Thank you to everyone for supporting me on what feels like a very important and worthy venture. “

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—Stacy McCoy Prime

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