BRIAN R WEINBERG
Brian believes we are dynamic human processes whose value is too often reduced to a list of achievements or the size of one’s rolodex. During university, Brian was exposed to extreme poverty for the first time while backpacking 3,000+ miles across South America on a mission to learn Spanish. Troubled by the images he had seen (most particularly a trip into the shanty towns of Lima, Peru), he came home to Texas with a sense of responsibility to take action. There he immersed himself in the concepts of microfinance; writing an honors thesis and partnering with his university president and well known Dallas business leaders to create the Recycle to Eradicate Poverty program; recycling used cell phones to fund microfinance loans to the poor. He knew impact at scale would mean finding ways to leverage the capital market for good and so he joined the investment team at a commercial impact investing private equity fund called MicroVest; investing about $100 million in debt/equity transactions into microfinance banks throughout South America (several investments in those same shanty towns in Peru). To complement the due diligence rigor and investment chops, Brian launched blendedprofit.com.
The GAMECHANGERS podcast series showcased cutting edge conversations on “growing the good economy” with thought leaders for all to learn and a resource center that mapped the emerging industry. It supported the questions he was hearing with lists of job boards, accelerators, conferences, etc while scaling venture capitalist Sean Foote’s MBA Berkeley simulcast to 75 universities around the world. During his travels, he began to see how the class of people no longer poor in these emerging markets began to follow the footsteps of US consumption habits. The planet could not sustain this. Now passionate about conscious consumption, he launched justgood.org (a “mary kay for social good” marketplace for socially conscious products). This work lasted several years but somehow never felt right. He realized selling millions of sustainable headphones wouldn’t actually solve the problem he set out to work on. Conscious consumption is really about behavior change. It is really about leadership to change a flawed system. These questions led him to become Nexus Global Operations Director (COO); which is a network of 3000 young people that bridges young wealth and social change as a social acupuncture point. Brian positioned Nexus for sustained growth by developing infrastructure on several fronts; a new governance operating system, core financial footing, and harnessing member led impact with the creation of working groups, labs, and city ambassador programs. Today, Brian’s focus is at the intersection personal and planetary regeneration. More @Weinberg or http://weinberg.strikingly.com.
Awards & Honors: Stagen Integral Leadership Program Black Belt, Summa Cum Laude honors in Finance (BBA) and Spanish (BA) from University of North Texas, Ashoka Youth Venture Ambassadorship, Clinton Global Initiative U Grantee, Starting Bloc Fellowship (Boston 2010), Sandbox Fellowship, Opportunity Collaboration Cordes Fellowship, UNT’s Rhodes Scholarship nomination, and Finance Student of the Year. Brian currently serves on the Education Advisory Council for the Consciousness & Healing Initiative (chi.is) and is a Senior Strategy & Partnerships Advisor (Global Operations Director Emeritus) at Nexus (nexusglobal.org).