Scaling Impact Investing in a Time of Crises with Fran Seegull
Join Impact Entrepreneur’s Laurie Lane-Zucker in a virtual fireside chat with Fran Seegull, Executive Director of the U.S. Impact Investing Alliance and Project Director of the Tipping Point Fund on Impact Investing, as she discusses the critical importance of scaling the field and practice of impact investing to help build an equitable and inclusive future. The U.S. Impact Investing Alliance, which serves as the U.S. representative to the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment, is dedicated to bridging market gaps and addressing shared challenges within the field.
Ongoing crises — the COVID-19 pandemic, economic recession, systemic racism and climate change — have exacerbated existing trends and inequities. For the U.S. Impact Investing Alliance, this has reinforced its dual approach to systems change: fostering community revitalization efforts and accelerating the transition to stakeholder capitalism.
Laurie and Fran discuss the Alliance’s theory of change, with a particular focus on public policy advocacy as a cornerstone of the impact investing field’s infrastructure. Fran speaks to upcoming efforts of the Alliance and the Tipping Point Fund on Impact Investing to examine how public policy and other field building tools can catalyze the flow of private capital toward urgent social, economic and environmental challenges.
Fran Seegull is the Executive Director of the U.S. Impact Investing Alliance. The Alliance is dedicated to strengthening the impact investing ecosystem by advocating for an enabling public policy environment, catalyzing the flow of institutional capital for impact, and building the impact investing movement globally.
Seegull was the Chief Investment Officer and Managing Director at ImpactAssets where she headed investment management for The Giving Fund—an impact investing donor advised fund. Seegull also oversaw product development and managed the Global Sustainable Agriculture and Microfinance Plus Notes.
Prior to joining ImpactAssets, Seegull was Managing Director at Funk Ventures, an early-stage impact venture capital firm. She also served as Vice President of Business Development at Novica, an online retailer of products made by artisans in Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Seegull has a BS in Economics from Barnard College at Columbia University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She serves on the Investment Committee of Align Impact, the Investment Advisory Committee of RSF Social Finance, the Advisory Board of SOCAP and the Advisory Council of the Case Initiative on Impact Investing at Duke University. Previously, Seegull was Adjunct Professor of Entrepreneurship at USC’s Marshall School of Business where she created and taught a graduate-level course on impact investing and won the Golden Apple Teaching Award for Best Elective, nominated and selected by Marshall students. She served on the Investment Committee of the Goldhirsh Foundation and on the G7 Social Impact Investment Task Force Working Group on Asset Allocation. Seegull tweets on impact investing at @franseegull.
Laurie Lane-Zucker is Founder and CEO of Impact Entrepreneur, LLC, an impact economy business that hosts the Impact Entrepreneur Network — a large, global network of “systems-minded” entrepreneurs, investors and scholars of social and environmental innovation — and publishes Impact Entrepreneur Magazine. For over 30 years, Laurie has been a “pioneer” (Forbes) and recognized leader in sustainability, social enterprise, and impact investing. Laurie was the founding Executive Director of the international environmental organization, Orion Society, which publishes the celebrated Orion Magazine, as well as the founder of a global sustainability think-tank, the Triad Institute, and Hotfrog, a Founding B Corporation, GIIRS Pioneer Company, and the first company ever to complete an equity transaction on an impact investment exchange. Laurie is the bestselling and multiple award-winning publisher and editor of books and magazines on sustainability and social impact, and the author of numerous articles on entrepreneurship and impact investing.