Social Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century
March 3, 2009Watch Cheryl Dorsey
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An accomplished social entrepreneur with expertise in health care, labor issues and public policy, Cheryl Dorsey was named President of Echoing Green in May 2002. She is the first Echoing Green Fellow to lead this global nonprofit, which sparks transformative social change by investing in emerging social entrepreneurs and their bold ideas to build a more equitable world. Since 1987, Echoing Green has awarded more than $27 million in start-up capital to over 450 social entrepreneurs worldwide.
Dorsey received her education at Harvard-Radcliffe Colleges where she earned a degree in history and science in 1985. In 1992, while training to be a pediatrician at Harvard Medical School, she received an Echoing Green Fellowship. With it, she launched the Family Van, a community-based mobile health unit that provides basic health care and outreach services to at-risk residents of inner-city Boston neighborhoods.
As a public policy innovator, Dorsey served as a White House Fellow from 1997-1998, serving as Special Assistant to the U.S. Secretary of Labor, advising the Clinton Administration on health care and other issues. She was later named Special Assistant to the Director of the Women's Bureau of the U.S. Labor Department, where she helped develop family-friendly workplace policies and spearheaded the labor secretary's pay equity initiative.
Dorsey serves on the board of the Coro New York Leadership Center, City Year (national), DonorsChoose.org, Grantmakers for Effective Organizations (GEO), and Freelancers Insurance Company, Inc., a for-profit insurance company and subsidiary of Working Today. She also serves as an advisory board member of the Action Tank for Social Entrepreneurs, America Forward, and the Lex Mundi Pro Bono Foundation. Dorsey is a 2006 Henry Crown Fellow through the Aspen Institute, a 2007 Prime Mover Fellow through the Hunt Alternatives Fund, and a member of the John F. Kennedy School of Government's Visiting Committee.
Dorsey has received numerous awards and honors for her commitment to public service, including the Pfizer Roerig History of Medicine Award, the Robert Kennedy Distinguished Public Service Award and the Manuel C. Carballo Memorial Prize. She holds a B.A. in History and Science from Harvard-Radcliffe Colleges, an M.D. from the Harvard Medical School and an M.P.P. from the John F. Kennedy School of Government. She writes and speaks widely on minority affairs, social justice, social entrepreneurship, and maternal and child health issues.