WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6TH
7:30 – 8:30 AM | Breakfast & Registration
7:30 – 8:30 AM | Active Owners Working Group Breakfast
8:30 – 8:45 AM | Welcome
8:45 – 9:15 AM | Keynote
Chid Liberty, Founder, Liberty & Justice
Chid co-founded Liberty & Justice, Africa’s first Fair Trade Certified™ apparel manufacturer, after working in entertainment, technology, and finance. He was born in Liberia, West Africa, but left as an infant when his father became the nation’s ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, with residence in Bonn. His family was later exiled in the United States. In 2009, Chid returned to Africa after 28 years abroad. Inspired by the Nobel Peace Prize winning Liberian Women’s Peace Movement, Chid co-founded Africa’s first Fair Trade Certified apparel factory to provide economic opportunities for internally displaced women, who on balance, were vulnerable to rampant unemployment and economic exclusion. He is currently leading L&J’s rapid expansion in Liberia and throughout the region. In addition to his work at Liberty & Justice, Chid served as the Entrepreneur-in-Residence at the University of Liberia’s Monrovia Business Startup Center (BSC). The BSC was founded by Spark, a Dutch NGO, for whom Chid manages the Ignite Fund (Liberia) – an equity investment fund that makes strategic investments in Liberian Pico-cap companies with high growth potential. He also speaks internationally on social entrepreneurship and impact investing – recently at Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton Universities, as well as the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in Australia and IE in Madrid, Spain.
9:15 - 11:30 AM | Democratizing Finance
To democratize finance, communities must define their own needs and play a role in addressing them. Too often, however, investment products are designed without input from the communities whose challenges they seek to address. This session will consider the opportunity and need to shift the prevailing paradigm in favor of community-driven and integrated capital deployment strategies. We will challenge how mission investors approach community-based solutions and evolve beyond the traditional lens of only financial risk and return. Together, we will explore models for engaging with diverse stakeholders and investment vehicles to support just and sustainable economies.
11:30 AM – 12:00 PM | Community Reflections
Join us to learn from and appreciate Confluence Members’ reflections on the field in an open forum sharing session.
12:15 – 1:30 PM | Lunch
1:30 – 2:45 PM | Concurrent Sessions (Choose one)
Beyond Quality Jobs: The Transformative Power of Worker-Ownership
Organized with Libra Foundation, RSF Social Finance, and the Fund for Democratic Communities
In the spirit of truth and transparency, this panel will delve into how our practice can range from incremental change to strategies that result in true transformation. We will explore how supporting worker-ownership is one critical way investors can promote diversity, equity and inclusion.” This discussion will feature a mix of wealth inheritors, lenders, cooperative developers, and worker-owners. Each of the speakers, in their distinct roles, will share how self-reflection and personal development has impacted their path and practice in the field.
Alex Haber, Philanthropic Advisor, RSF Social Finance
Regan Pritzker, Board Member, The Libra Foundation
Marnie Thompson, Co-Managing Director, Fund for Democratic Communities
Case for Accountability: Considering Potential Harm for Smarter Investing & Stronger Impact
Organized with Woodcock Foundation
Current impact investment due diligence and measurement frameworks tend to focus on how deals can create social and environmental change. Unfortunately, they don’t fully consider all external stakeholders and the potential harm to local communities. We will explore this gap and discuss resources and tools for creating more accountability in our investment practices. By being more thoughtful about the full force of the “impact” of our investments, we as investors can make more informed decisions about intended and unintended outcomes; avoid and mitigate harm where it can be identified; and hold investees accountable for measuring and reporting on social results. Panelists will share their own personal stories about investment projects gone wrong and tools for improved diligence and monitoring.
Natalie Bridgeman Fields, Founder and Executive Director, Accountability Councel
Stacey Faella, Executive Director, Woodcock Foundation
Gabino Vicente, Community Leader, Mexico
Transitioning to a 100% PRI Strategy
Organized with Tiedemann Advisors
What happens when a foundation accelerates its use of Program Related Investments (PRIs), while downsizing the deployment of grant dollars? We will engage with the implications of scaling PRIs to 100% of a foundation’s 5% annual distribution, hearing from a variety of perspectives. While perhaps at odds with traditional philanthropy, the session will cover the investment, legal, tax, and moral considerations of this approach. The adoption of PRIs in the U.S. remains low on a relative basis, and this session seeks to highlight the added benefits of a fully integrated PRI strategy, drawing from a practitioner’s perspective.
Brad Harrison, Director, Tiedemann Advisors
Additional speakers to be announced
When Worlds Collide
Organized with Cambridge Associates
Impact investing has historically stood apart from “traditional,” financial return-driven investing, but increasingly, an exciting convergence of variables is turning this old distinction on its head. Is impact investing still a discrete discipline or does it overlap with traditional investing in more ways than we acknowledge? If so, what are the implications for investors, managers and entrepreneurs, in terms of their own identities, communication strategies, and opportunities for collaboration? This session will call on three unique stakeholders, all with experience in traditional and impact investing, to discuss the opportunities and potential risks of having these two worlds collide. Panelists will highlight specific examples in which their motivations and investment practices did or did not align with their investing partners – either their external collaborators or internal colleagues - to better understand why breakdown occurs and what is possible when viewpoints effectively converge.
Raoul Slavin Julia, Managing Director, The Aspenall Group for Treehouse Investments
Additional speakers to be announced
Movement Building Tools and Approaches for Investors
Organized with TidesIn this session, we will have a focused conversation at the nexus of technology, movement building, and advocacy. Informed by the current heated political environment, we will delve into specific technology solutions that aim to boost civic engagement for the long term. We will hear directly from movement leaders on how tech solutions are transforming their work to build a broader and more powerful movement. We will address the importance of impact investing and c4 funding in this context, as well as traditional 501c3 grant-making. We will open up the conversation to engage the audience, to learn from each other, and to address challenges or fears that people feel when considering advocacy or c4 funding as part of their toolkit.
Peter Martin, Philanthropic Director, Tides
Additional Speakers to be Announced
2:45 – 5:15 PM | Free Time
3:00 - 4:00 PM | Book Fair and Book Signing
Join us for refreshments, pick up a book, and have it autographed by thought-leading authors from the Confluence community.
6:00 – 9:00 PM | Climate Gala
Plenary: Investing in Climate
Organized with Hip Hop Caucus
Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr., President and CEO, Hip Hop Caucus