It is absolutely true that Yank Barry has seen a high level of success in most aspects of his life. Over nearly 30 years in the music business, he was highly successful as a singer, songwriter, arranger, producer and publisher. He also wrote many very successful commercial jingles, including several for some of the most popular brands of all time.
That would have been enough for most people, but for Yank Barry, it was just a prologue. He later became a successful entrepreneur when he founded and serves as an executive with Vitapro, where he developed several very successful products. Something about Yank’s priorities changed, however, while he was traveling the world for business and he saw people living and suffering under conditions that seemed unimaginable. Yank Barry wanted to help people like that, which brought about his latest career, as a philanthropist. And he’s been enormously successful at that, too. In fact, because he has been able to help so many people the world had forgotten, Yank Barry has received three nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize. And why not? His global hunger initiative, the Global Village Champions Foundation, has served up more than one billion meals to hungry people throughout the world. And that’s just a tip of the iceberg.
One compelling aspect of Yank’s philanthropy is that, unlike many philanthropists, he doesn’t simply issue grants and write checks. He places himself on the front lines when it comes to aiding people caught in crises. In recent years, he and his wife, Yvette, have been focused on helping and saving refugees from war torn Syria, Iraq and Iran. Thankfully, thousands have been able to escape the violence and volatility caused by groups as lethal as ISIS. Bringing peace to so many is a noble effort.
A lot of people point to the fact that Yank Barry has been a very successful musician and a successful businessman. They are right, of course, but that only relays part of what is actually an extremely interesting story. It is true that he spent almost 30 years in the music industry, as a singer, songwriter, arranger, producer and publisher. In fact, he also had great success as the writer of advertising jingles for many products, including some of the most popular brands ever.
It is also the case that Yank Barry was also a successful food entrepreneur and executive for a while. His company, Vitapro, produced a dehydrated soy-based meat-replacement product. It was that part of his career that led to the philanthropic side he demonstrates these days. You see, while traveling the world for business, Yank Barry took note of appalling conditions that he felt that he had to deal with. Some people lived in the worst conditions imaginable. Yank Barry felt that he has to help.
Through Global Village Champions Foundation, which is Yank Barry’s global hunger initiative, more than one billion meals have been served to hungry people throughout the world since its creation in 1995. He has also worked closely with NGOs and local agencies worldwide, to find out what people need and to bring help to them. That effort includes work in politically unstable areas where few others ever even go. Unlike many philanthropists, Yank Barry and his wife Yvette don’t just give money and have someone else do the hard work; they help out with much of it themselves. This is probably why he has received humanitarian awards from India, Côte D’Ivoire, the Bahamas and Mexico over the last 20 years. Very recently, Yank and Yvette Barry received the Childhelp International Achievement Award.
Holding onto his childhood music dreams, and following an individual career that started in Israel, Yank Barry founded the group “The Footprints” alongside like-minded musicians. Starting in 1966, they recorded one release on Columbia records with an additional two releases on Capital records. The Footprints only remained together for two years, playing tunes and touring in various venues. Yank Barry has referred to his time with the band as the “flower power” years, including moments sharing the stage with the famed Jimmy Hendrix — an experience with the great rock guitarist at the Cafe Wa in Greenwich Village in New York City.