Center presents Innovator in Social Business Awards

Center presents Innovator in Social Business Awards

From left: Leaders from Bain Capital Double Impact, Chobani, and Indigo Ag accept awards in honor of their organizations' social impact at the inaugural Innovator in Social Business awards.

Three notable companies — Chobani, Bain Capital Double Impact, and Indigo Ag — were honored at the inaugural Innovator in Social Business Awards presented by the Baumhart Center on February 28, 2020.

This new, nationally significant award series recognizes companies who are at the forefront of social innovation in business.

Innovators in social business

The awards are presented to extraordinary companies committed to doing well and doing good across three categories: Purpose and Profit, Environmental Stewardship, and Social Impact. A ceremony was held during the Baumhart Center’s annual Leading for Good conference which convenes business leaders to provide the needed skills, knowledge, and networks to accelerate social value creation in their respective companies.

“The Baumhart Center extends Loyola’s pioneering work in business ethics, social responsibility and education for social justice,” said Jo Ann Rooney, president of Loyola University Chicago. “The Financial Times recently cited Loyola’s Quinlan School of Business as one of only four pre-eminent business schools in the world advancing ethics, sustainability, and social purpose. The conference and these inaugural awards leverage Loyola’s expertise in moving today’s business leaders toward greater purpose and action in solving today’s most urgent social issues.”

Awards ceremony photos

Innovator in Social Business Awards 2020

2020 awardees

Social Impact Award: Chobani

Food company Chobani is recognized for its commitment to diversity and inclusion, its extraordinary benefits for workers, and its innovative Chobani Shares initiative, which gives every full-time member of the company the opportunity to share in its growth. 

“We’re honored to receive this recognition from Loyola’s Baumhart Center. Making good food and doing good deeds is what motivates Chobani. Humanity first and making a difference in people’s lives – that’s what we do at Chobani,” said Peter McGuinness, president of Chobani.

Grace Zuncic, chief people and culture officer at Chobani, accepted the award on behalf of the company.

Robert L. Parkinson Jr. Award for Purpose and Profit: Bain Capital Double Impact

Bain Capital Double Impact is recognized for its innovative partnership with the nonprofit B Lab and for its commitment to continuously measuring and improving the social impact of portfolio.

“Accurate and comprehensive measurement of impact is fundamental to our approach, and we could not have established early success without our fantastic partners at B Lab. Thanks to them and to the Baumhart Center for all they are doing to advance the field and inspire future leaders to embrace impact as a guiding tenet across all business sectors," said Greg Shell, managing director of Bain Capital Double Impact.

Environmental Stewardship Award: Indigo Ag

Indigio Ag is recognized for its Terraton Initiative, which unites stakeholders across sectors to take a trillion tons of carbon out of the atmosphere and sequester it in farms around the world.

“Indigo is honored by Loyola’s recognition of our efforts to accelerate the most immediate, affordable, and scalable means to address climate change: farmers. We’re grateful to The Baumhart Center for its continued leadership in promoting the pivotal role that business can play in solving our most pressing global challenges and to be counted among a group of organizations driving toward a more sustainable future of business,” said David Perry, CEO of Indigo Ag.

Selection of the awardees

“Our aim with these awards is to speed the adoption of social innovation in business,” said Seth Green, founding director of Loyola’s Baumhart Center. “We have been thrilled to see an array of recent announcements from the Business Roundtable, BlackRock, and beyond on the importance of purpose in business.

“Through our awards, we seek to offer explicit role models and best practices that set the standard for what it truly means to do well and do good, together.”

Nominations for the awards were invited from a group of more than 70 executives and academics who serve on one of the Baumhart Center’s advisory committees. Nominated companies were then evaluated on four criteria: quality of innovation, depth of impact, scalability of innovation, and commitment of leadership.

The awardees were selected by a judging committee that included eight business and civic leaders:

  • Vicki Escarra, Senior Advisor, BCG; former CEO, Feeding America; former CMO, Delta
  • Janet Froetscher, President, Pritzker Foundation; former CEO, Special Olympics International
  • Jennifer J. Griffin, Baumhart Professor of Business Ethics, Loyola Quinlan School of Business
  • The late Robert Parkinson, Chairman Emeritus, Baxter International; former Chairman, Loyola University Chicago
  • Sunil Sanghvi, Senior Advisor & Senior Partner Emeritus, McKinsey & Co.
  • Kevin Stevens, Dean, Quinlan School of Business, Loyola University Chicago
  • Kevin Washington, CEO, YMCA of the USA
  • Greg Wasson, President, Wasson Enterprise; former CEO, Walgreens

The Innovator in Social Business Awards will be presented annually.

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