Leading for Good 2023 - Closing Synthesis

Leading for Good 2023 - Closing Synthesis

Our Baumhart Scholar, Max Ebacher 23’, closed out our 2023 Leading for Good conference with an incredible synthesis of the day. Read it below.

Good afternoon everyone,

My name is Max Ebacher, I am the Senior Manager of Partnerships at UtmostU, an organization that serves over 800 young adults from the Chicagoland area striving to earn college degrees and enter high growth careers. I am also a Baumhart Scholar from the Class of 2023 - cheers to my classmates in the room who will be graduating in a month’s time.

To close out our time together, I would like to provide brief remarks that touch on some of the great ideas and profound insights shared today from three different perspectives:

  • First, from my role as an MBA student in the Baumhart Scholars program
  • Next, how impact comes as a result of cross-sector collaboration
  • Last, from the standpoint of how today’s ideas can be used to provide innovations for our communities.

First, as an MBA student and Baumhart Scholar:

I loved the catchphrase that Erin Amico of the Nature Museum shared: “Wonder is in our nature.” It reminds us to do as Joanne Rodriguez has done at Mycocyle and push the boundaries of possibility as we develop our personal vision for a better society. But, in the midst of our busy work or class or social schedules, Tonika Lewis Johnson reminds us to pause for equity. Whose voice have we left out of our vision? How can we learn from diverse voices to mold our vision and deliver for ALL stakeholders?

Next, from a cross-sector standpoint:

Daniel Cervantes and Kathleen St. Louis Caliento shared with us how Skills and Cara build deep partnerships and pathways to entry across sectors, from tech, to health care, to finance and beyond. But as Kathleen pointed out, one key question for Cara is: how have we served our program participants? Have we met their needs? This inspires us to ask industries: Who are all of your stakeholders? Who do you truly serve? And how are you serving them?

Finally, as it relates to innovating in our communities:

Tuan from VietFive asked us “If you haven’t used your gifts for others, why not?” This brings me back to Tonika. As an artist, Tonika brings a unique perspective to the world. So when she shared that she used an arts grant to renovate homes, we saw how a spark of creativity and a change of perspective brought beauty to Englewood that directly impacted her neighbor’s lives. So we ask: how can we change the lens through which we see the world to look at the resources we have before us and use them more effectively for the lives around us?

So what are your three takeaways? Who are the three people you met today who inspired you? How will you stay connected?

Creating a better future for all is a continuation of the work that everyone in this room is already engaged in. But that conversation you had today at lunch or after a panel could be the catalyst to a new innovation that lifts up a community or unlocks important potential.

I implore you to keep those discussions going, turn them into action as new partnerships and enterprises, and come back next year with stories of how your time at Leading For Good 2023 created an important connection that helped you do your part to Co-Create a Future for All.

Thank you for being here with us today, sharing your ideas, building important connections, and supporting the Baumhart Center.