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تاريخ التسجيل: Jun 2019
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افتراضي How Being a 13-Year-Old Busboy Prepared Darren Walker to Lead the Ford Foundation

For me, there is always a tension between the need to think and the need to do. Among my challenges is that I want to do, and doing without thinking things through is hazardous. I have had to temper my urgency with reflection. But on the other hand, I think, in philanthropy we have to have a sense of urgency, because we are enormously fortunate to have resources and networks and assets to have an impact.
There’s a school of thought that says philanthropy has not been nearly urgent enough. Has this informed your work at the Ford Foundation?
First of all, my lived experience gives me a perspective on the work of the Ford Foundation. The experience that most prepared me to be president of the Ford Foundation was working as a busboy when I was 13. When you work as a busboy, you are the lowest person in the organization, along with the dishwasher. You are invisible, and relevant only to the extent that you are cleaning up after people and taking away the things they discard. No one acknowledges you, no one speaks to you, no one recognizes your dignity. There was something about being rendered invisible and the perniciousness of the systems that render too many people invisible in our society that has informed how I think about our work here at Ford.
For me, this question of how I settled into philanthropy is one that I really struggle with, because there is an enormous amount of privilege. And so the question for me is, what are we doing with our privilege?
There’s a bit of a backlash against big philanthropy brewing. What’s changed?
Inequality has changed. The level of inequality that we see in our society is breeding greater cynicism and more hopelessness. And hopelessness is the greatest threat to American democracy. It is absolutely fair for the average American citizen to be more cynical about the idea of fairness in America today, because there is less fairness in America today. This is going to sound snarky, but if you want the American dream, move to Canada, because Canada has a higher level of social mobility and economic mobility than we do in this country.
In philanthropy, we’re in the business of hope. We should be builders of hope. We should be investing in the things that help create more hope. And one pathway to more hope is more justice. They are inextricably linked.
What are some reasonable changes you think could be made to our economic system that would reduce inequality?
egybest1 غير متواجد حالياً   رد مع اقتباس
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الكلمات الدليلية (Tags - تاق )
13-year-old, busboy, darren, ford, foundation, lead, prepared, walker


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