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Laura Goodman ’03: Public-private partnerships
Laura Goodman works at Reading Is Fundamental, the nation's oldest and largest children's literacy organization. Last year, RIF programs reached over 5 million children and distributed over 17 million new books through a grassroots network of volunteers at over 21,000 sites in every state and U.S. territory. Goodman challenges corporate partners to build social relevance for their brands and to use an integrated approach to corporate philanthropy to achieve business objectives. "I use my sales, strategy and marketing skills to help form corporate cause-related marketing partnerships, identify new sources of corporate support and maintain strong relationships with our current corporate partners" she says.
Prior to joining Reading Is Fundamental and immediately after graduation from Columbia Business School, Laura joined KaBOOM!, a national nonprofit that inspires companies, communities and individuals to create safe play space for youth. Using the community-build model, KaBOOM! creates partnerships between community groups and major corporations in an effort to change the world - one playground at a time. Laura managed corporate sponsorships overseeing the execution of corporate partnerships and programs.
Prior to business school, Goodman worked in executive recruiting at J. Robert Scott, a subsidiary of Fidelity Investments. "I was energized to create novel solutions to building management teams at entrepreneurial organizations." However, after evaluating and recruiting talent for several years, Goodman realized that further education would be necessary to achieve her goals. "I knew that to successfully run a company, whether nonprofit or for-profit, an understanding of all the different components and functions - from finance to marketing to operations - would be critical. Attending a top business school was the logical next step."
While at the School, through the Social Enterprise Program and the National Social Venture Competition, Goodman grew increasingly interested in the connection between the business and nonprofit sectors. After working with Professor Cathy Clark on the Research Initiative for Social Entrepreneurship and spending a summer at a venture philanthropy fund, Goodman felt that her MBA could be put to good use immediately in the nonprofit sector. "Some of us need to give back right away," she says. Columbia Business School awarded her the Guenther Family Public and Nonprofit Assistance Grant in 2003.
Social Venture Innovators
Founder and CEO
Lending money to entrepreneurs whose endeavors are too large to receive microfinance loans but too small and risky to receive funding from traditional banks.
Founder and CEO
Hiring unemployed residents of financially underserved communities to install solar and energy-efficient technology for small businesses, nonprofits, and affordable housing.
Leveraging crowdfunding technology to reduce preventable maternal and neonatal deaths and disability.
View the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise brochure, Empowering Leaders to Change the World