Submitted by: Pax World Management Corp.
Categories: Business Ethics
Posted: Mar 27, 2003 – 11:00 PM EST
--In August 1971, Rev. Dr. Elliot "Jack" Corbett and fellow United Methodist minister Rev. Dr. Luther Tyson introduced Pax World Fund, the first broadly diversified, publicly available mutual fund to use ethical as well as financial screens in its investment decisions. The Fund modeled an innovative vision of peace that reached far beyond the mere avoidance of war: it not only excluded war-related businesses but sought companies that provided life-enhancing goods and services such as food, housing, and health care. The Fund's concept of "socially responsible investing" also encompassed environmental stewardship and fair employment practices.
The financial establishment greeted the Fund with skepticism, but Corbett and Tyson believed in their idea, and they persevered. By 2003, Pax World Fund (now called the "Pax World Balanced Fund" and part of a growing family of funds) had over $1 billion in assets, and nearly 200 funds had followed in Pax World's footsteps.
"Jack Corbett's contribution to Pax World, and to the world of ethical investing, was immeasurable," said Pax World Chairman Larry Shadek. "He was a true pioneer, always pushing us to look farther, to do better, to dream bigger dreams, and he will be deeply missed."
Corbett served as vice president for social research and marketing with Pax World Fund from 1970 to 1996. As director of marketing, he was an ebullient and articulate spokesperson for the Fund and its vision.
Coincident with the creation of Pax World Fund, Corbett founded Pax World Service, a nonprofit, philanthropic organization promoting peace, international reconciliation, and small-scale, sustainable development. The organization pioneered the concept of "citizen diplomacy," providing Americans with opportunities to visit the Middle East, Central America, and Cuba. For two decades, Corbett served as president of the Pax World Foundation, which supported Pax World Service.
Corbett was a cofounder of the first national handgun control organization, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, and he served as the first chairperson of the National Coalition to Ban Handguns.
A strong supporter of the United Nations, he was president of the United Nations Association/National Capital Area, 1990-91, and was a member of the National Council of the United Nations Association/USA.
Corbett was listed in "Who's Who in Religion" (1977-78), "Who's Who in the East" (1988-89), "Who's Who in the World" (1991-92), "Who's Who in Finance and Industry" (1992-93), and "Who's Who in America" (1992-93). He received a lifetime achievement award from the Alumni Association of American University, and in 1998 Pax World Funds honored him for his historic contribution to the field of socially responsible investing.
Corbett is survived by his wife Sarah Anne Rapp Corbett, their three children, and four grandchildren.
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