I’m Not An Impact Investor, Or Am I?

Impact investor

I’m Not An Impact Investor, Or Am I? by Milken Institute


Caitlin MacLean, Director, Innovative Finance, Milken Institute


Janet Cowell, Treasurer, North Carolina

Sharon Hendricks, Vice Chair, CalSTRS Board; Professor, Communication Studies, Los Angeles City College

William Lee, Chief Investment Officer and Vice President, Foundation and Pension Investments, Kaiser Permanente

Shawn Wischmeier, Chief Investment Officer, Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies

Too many investors associate “impact investing” with high risks and below-market returns. Often, that is because they don’t realize the scope of investments that fall within the category. A smart investor can make the world a better place and still enjoy a healthy profit. For example, renewable-energy projects and sovereign issuances for developing countries that need funds for infrastructure development are financially sound yet socially responsible investments. Using environmental, social or governance screens, investors can practice impact investing without sacrificing returns or absorbing any more significant a risk than a mainstream investment. And in some cases, impact investing involves asset classes that are less vulnerable to general market risks. So are you an impact investor? Hear from panelists about their experiences with impact investing and how to move past the stereotype to reveal tangible investment opportunities.

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