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Up To Date

Social Entrepreneurship: Making Changes By Making Money


Imagine starting a business for any other reason but to make a profit. There is a subset of business owners who do just that ... social entrepreneurs.

These executives look to organize, create and manage a venture to make social change. On Friday's Up to Date we examine social enterprise: from what drives someone to start a business aimed at bettering the lives of others, to the process of taking an idea all the way to market, to how the funds find their way to worthwhile causes.


  • Dawn Taylor is co-founder and COO of Red Dirt. She also serves as Executive Director of the Kansas City chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
  • Eric Person is the co-founder of Urban Harvest KC, an aquaponics farm that operated in downtown Kansas City, Mo. Committed to providing locally grown and chemical-free vegetables for Kansas City, Urban Harvest closed it doors on September 1.
  • Tom McDonnell is CEO of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.  McDonnell formerly held the position of CEO of DST Systems, Inc.  He has been a Kauffman trustee since 2003 and chairman of the board since 2006. McDonnell has been recognized with various honors, including Kansas Citian of the Year in 2003 and the William Jewell College Yates Medallion for Distinguished Civic Service. He received a BSBA degree in accounting from Rockhurst University and an MBA in finance from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business.
  • Ian C. (Mac) Mac Millan is the Dhirubhai Ambani Professor of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Professor of Management, and Director of the Sol C. Snider Entrepreneurial Research Center at The Wharton School. He is also the co-author of The Social Entrepreneurs Playbook. His current projects center on technology strategy, rapid growth firms,  and societal wealth enterprising.
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
As senior producer of Up To Date, I want our listeners to hear familiar and new voices that shine light on the issues and challenges facing the myriad communities KCUR serves, and to expose our audiences to the wonderful and the creative in the Kansas City area. Just as important to me is an obligation to mentor the next generation of producers to ensure that the important conversations continue. Reach me at alexanderdk@kcur.org.