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Alfa Demmellash Selected as CNN Hero

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Alfa Demmellash grew up on less than a dollar a day, and against the backdrop of torture and murder. But these days she's living the American dream and helping others do the same. "Entrepreneurs are at the very heart of what the American dream is all about," says Demmellash, a native of Ethiopia. And from her small office in Jersey City, her nonprofit, Rising Tide Capital, is helping small businesses flourish. Robin Munn, who runs a flower shop in Jersey City, says the skills she learned through Demmellash helped her transform the way she operates her business. "I was thinking about closing, but once I started taking the classes I found that the fire came back."

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