As part of its ongoing Higher Calling series, the Veritas Institute, the John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought and the Habiger Institute for Catholic Leadership of the Center for Catholic Studies partnered with the Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law and Public Policy, the Department of Entrepreneurship, and the Department of Justice and Peace Studies to present “Business as an Agent for Social Change: Social Entrepreneurship, Benefit Corporation, Curing Poverty,” on April 24.
Addressing the question, “How can businesses be a better agent for social change?,” this event explored two interesting developments: social entrepreneurship and a new legal instrument called Benefit Corporations. The afternoon session was moderated by Professor Elizabeth Schiltz, Thomas J. Abood Research Scholar and co-director of the Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law and Public Policy at the UST School of Law, and featured a panel that included:
- Elizabeth Babson, attorney with Drinker Biddle and Reath LLP
- Professor Lyman Johnson, Laurence and Jean LeJeune Distinguished Chair in Law at the UST School of Law
- Haskell Murray, assistant professor of management at Belmont University
- John McVea, Ph.D., associate professor of entrepreneurship at the UST Opus College of Business
- Michael Naughton, Ph.D., Alan W. Moss Endowed Chair in Catholic Social Thought and director of UST’s John A. Ryan Institute for Catholic Social Thought
The event continued with an evening session that included opening remarks about social entrepreneurship from Dr. Julie Sullivan, president of the University of St. Thomas. Michelle Rovang-Burke, director of the Veritas Institute, moderated the evening. The featured speaker was Michael Miller, producer and narrator of PovertyCure, a video series on the important role entrepreneurship plays in combating global poverty premised on a proper understanding of the human person.
During dinner, attendees viewed a clip from PovertyCure and participated in moderated discussions at their respective tables. Dinner was followed by a question and answer session with Miller.
The audience of more than one hundred people at each session included students, faculty, staff, alumni and members of the local business and law communities.