The Center for Ethics
& Social Responsibility



Wanted: Next-Gen Leaders
in Social Responsibility

The events of 2020 exposed weaknesses in our social fabric, presenting both challenges and opportunities for many businesses. Pete Dignan, a three-time CEO of Certified B Corps, says, “We need ways to help ease the shock from unexpected events like the ones we’re experiencing now.”

Dignan teaches the Certificate in Corporate Social Responsibility (CCSR), an executive education course at Leeds created by the Center for Ethics and Social Responsibility. Enrollment has increased from 13 students in 2016 to 40 this fall.

In the course, Dignan helps professionals catalyze their careers with in-depth knowledge of CSR, practical skills and a strong network of like-minded changemakers. These next-gen leaders explore the ways companies can help solve the world’s most difficult social and environmental problems. “Young adults want to work for companies that have a meaningful purpose at their core; ones with CSR in their DNA, not just a nice-to-have,” asserts Dignan.

The future of this work, he says, is to adopt CSR holistically as an integrated element of corporate strategy, an approach that is needed now more than ever.

Interested in the spring 2021 virtual course?
Details at

Alumni Use Certificate for Good

SavannahSavannah Benton

External Affairs Manager | Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA)

In learning about ethical investing, Savannah’s key takeaway was the business case for social impact: Ethical companies are stronger investments and tend to thrive. Now she works with donors to see what kind of social good they can create together.

“CSR programs make lasting change when the culture of a company shifts from valuing shareholders to valuing stakeholders.”

Micah Gurard-LevinMicah Gurard-Levin

Senior Manager, Community Relations and Corporate Responsibility | Liberty Global

Micah took what he learned about social contracts, inclusivity and flat organizational structures to propel CSR throughout his organization, even launching a new committee to give employees a more influential voice in community investments, volunteering and engagement.

“I gained solid CSR knowledge that allowed me to combine my passions for social impact and venture capital into my dream job.”

MeridethMeredith Hintze

Director, Foundation Operations and Community Outreach | COPIC

Meredith took her CCSR final project, a presentation of the business case for CSR, and used it as a jumping off point to start thinking about next steps and how to make the work that is already happening at COPIC more visible. After presenting her work to the CEO, she was invited by him to present her work to company leadership and staff as a way to celebrate the work that employees are already doing, and what CSR means at COPIC.



“For years, COPIC has done a nice job of engaging both in the community and with our employees. My role is to help our company continue to put the mission first and to enhance both our storytelling and materiality around these efforts.”

Published: Oct. 14, 2020