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Leigh Hafrey of MIT Sloan School of Management to Lead Colloquium for the Common Good on World Poverty Day

Leigh Hafrey of MIT Sloan School of Management to Lead Colloquium for the Common Good on World Poverty Day

Published 04-02-09

Submitted by Opportunity Collaboration

DENVER, CO. - April 2, 2009 - Leigh Hafrey, Senior Lecturer, Behavioral and Policy Sciences, MIT Sloan School of Management and co-Master of Mather House, Harvard College, will lead the four-day Colloquium for Common Good, beginning October 17, World Poverty Day. The Colloquium is an integral part of the Opportunity Collaboration: it aims to help delegates refine their executive judgment, recognize the interdependence of the systems in which they work, and set a collaborative stage for sustainable social change.

"The Opportunity Collaboration addresses the real possibility that, in the current global economic downturn, those who have few means of bettering their lot will face an even greater dearth of opportunities to do so. I developed the Colloquium for the Common Good to help professionals working in the arena of poverty alleviation and eradication step back and remind themselves of why they do what they do, and imagine the guiding principles that might help them do it with renewed confidence and energy. The Colloquium aims briefly to take participants out of the trenches, so that they can reflect on their role in the larger society,"says Hafrey.

In his work in management communication and ethics, Hafrey relates rhetorical competence to larger organizational challenges, such as professional standards, entrepreneurship, mentoring, conflict resolution and cross-cultural relations, in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors. A senior moderator at the Aspen Institute, he has written and spoken widely on the humanities in society today, and is the author of The Story of Success: Five Steps to Mastering Ethics in Business.

"Faced with scarce resources and mounting impoverishment, it is easy to leave the drivers of poverty alleviation unexamined and, against the evidence of experience and history, keep doing the same things we’ve always done," states Jonathan Lewis, founder of the Opportunity Collaboration. "Every informed leader knows that complex problems, like poverty, require multi-dimensional solutions and multi-stakeholder engagement. The burden is upon us to do better and Hafrey's role in the Colloquium will help us do just that."

The Colloquium for the Common Good will take participants through four two-hour sessions, moving from a statement of the problem of poverty and dependency, to theoretical solutions predicated on personal and institutional values, accounts of personal experience and practical outcomes, and an historical contextualization of, and re-commitment to, poverty alleviation.

"I got involved with the Opportunity Collaboration out of my experience of impoverished communities in the U.S. and abroad; a long-standing intellectual and political commitment to social justice; and admiration for the vision and energy that Jonathan Lewis brings to the cause of poverty alleviation. I hope that the Colloquium, which begins on Poverty Day, Oct. 17, will help Opportunity Collaboration delegates return to the fray refreshed and ready for new challenges," explains Hafrey.

Hafrey's sessions, "Two Ways of Looking at Poverty", "The Value of Values: Bootstrapping, Philanthropy, Democracy," "My Values, My Practice" and "Poverty, Human Rights, and the Global Society" - will run 9:00-11:00 a.m. on each day of the Collaboration; selected delegate-moderators will lead small groups of participants using the Socratic method; all delegates will participate in the Colloquium, thereby making the texts and the Colloquium experience a shared conceptual foundation for the Opportunity Collaboration.

Delegate-moderators for the Colloquium include Carola M. Barton, Former Director of Commitments, Clinton Global Initiative Asia, Former Vice President, Saga Foundation; John Harvey, Executive Director, Grantmakers without Borders; Thomas J. Higgins, Founding Chief Executive Officer, Prosetta Corporation, Former President, Business for Social Responsibility; Theresa Fay-Bustillos, President, Board of Directors, International Funders for Indigenous Peoples, Former Executive Director, Levi Strauss Foundation; Sara Olsen, Founding Partner, SVT Consulting; Bruce Sievers, Visiting Scholar, Haas Center for Public Service, Stanford University, Consulting Director, Skirball Foundation, Former CEO, California Council for the Humanities; and Jane Wales, President & Co-Founder, Global Philanthropy Forum, Executive Director, Nonprofit Sector & Philanthropy Program, The Aspen Institute. If you are interested in joining Leigh, Lewis and many other social justice leaders in this groundbreaking venture, please visit today.

Leigh Hafrey's journalism, essays, reviews, and translations have appeared in the New York Times and other American and European periodicals. His book, The Story of Success: Five Steps to Mastering Ethics in Business is published by Other Press, and is available for purchase at many online book sellers.

About the Opportunity Collaboration
From October 17-20, 2009, the Opportunity Collaboration is bringing together leaders from all over the world to leverage resources and create new alliances in the fight against poverty. A strategic networking summit of social investors/social ventures, entrepreneurial nonprofit leaders, foundation trustees/executives, policy thought leaders and agents of change. An impartial, non-aligned forum, Opportunity Collaboration uses the power of connection and community to create economic justice and alleviate poverty.

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Opportunity Collaboration

Opportunity Collaboration

A four-day problem-solving, strategic retreat for nonprofit leaders, for-profit social entrepreneurs, grant-makers and social investors engaged in poverty alleviation and economic justice enterprises. On World Poverty Day, leverage resources, combine forces, share innovations and operate more effectively. Break down the silos of unproductive competition and go beyond the boundaries of conventional poverty alleviation.

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