Impact investor and social entrepreneur D. Wayne Silby was recognized this week for a lifetime of social impact achievement.
Silby, W’70, received the Joseph Wharton Award for Social Impact for his accomplishments in impact investing and social entrepreneurship. Presented by The Alumni Club of New York, this award pays tribute to a Wharton graduate who has had the greatest impact in public service, social enterprise or philanthropy.
Silby has long been committed to social change, paving the way for investors to maximize shareholder value while pursuing sustainable, responsible social returns.
“The motivations for impact investing are many,” he reveals in a 2011 essay published in MIT Innovations. “The Wall Street problem of recent years—how to make money with money, especially other people’s money without regard for the real human consequences—has caused our whole society to rethink the status accorded Wall Street bankers and financial engineers. We who are the knowledge workers benefiting from the free market system have lurking concerns about our chosen system and its growing divide between rich and poor. We can donate to nonprofits, but impact investing gives us the chance to use some of our investment dollars to make a world that offers more equal opportunities.”
Silby co-founded Calvert Investments in 1976, which grew to become one of the largest sustainable and responsible investment (SRI) companies in the nation. He now serves as the Chairman of the Calvert Social Investment Foundation, a 501(c)3 created to invest directly in underserved communities, supporting micro-credit, low-income housing, small business and other community development initiatives. The Foundation now has more than $180 million invested in 200 nonprofits and social enterprises.
Silby is also a pioneer of sustainability. More than 25 years ago, he helped to create the Social Venture Network, a membership organization comprised of more than 500 national and international leaders from for-profit and non-profit enterprises, who share a commitment to sustainable business practices, business ethics, and the triple bottom line.
Read earlier coverage: “Pioneers of Social Investing: John G. Guffery and D. Wayne Silby” in Wharton Magazine