Okay, it’s been three months since I last contributed to this blog. I have no excuse, but I’ll offer one anyway.
When last I wrote, I was heading off to India for three weeks. It was a fascinating trip—a true reminder of the challenges we face when people living in corrugated huts with no windows and no plumbing are adjacent to a 29-story mansion that houses five people and not far from the Mumbai Bentley dealership! Unlike many people who get sick while travelling in India, I was healthy as an ox the whole trip—only to get really sick as soon as I got home. So I was out of commission for a month, and then it took me two months to get caught up.
But I’m back…only now I’m off to the Skoll World Forum in Oxford next week!
I’m most excited—eager to learn from the 900 other leading social entrepreneurs who will be gathering to network and exchange ideas. I’m especially proud that Pacific Community Ventures will be participating, via a preconference meeting, where we’ll be launching a new research project entitled, The Impact Investor: People and Practices Delivering Exceptional Financial and Social Returns. Congrats to PCV’s Ben Thornley and our partners on this project, Cathy Clarke of the Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship at Duke University, and Jed Emerson of Impact Assets. As a first step in the project, the team is releasing a white paper, The Need for Evidence and Engagement.
And one more piece of good news: California Assemblyman John Perez, Speaker of the California Assembly, appointed me this week to the California Organized Investment Network (COIN) Advisory Board. COIN is a state initiative designed to increase insurance company investment in lower income communities in California. An increasing number of insurers are, or want to be, impact investors. COIN helps those companies deploy capital to investments that will earn a financial return, even as they have a positive impact—in job creation, affordable housing, school construction, health care—in our most vulnerable communities. View the press release here. Learn more about COIN here.
I promise to write before another three months go by!