You’ve heard the term “return on investment.” But how about recognizing “return on influence”?
The leadership of the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce trotted out the catch phrase for Monday’s annual meeting at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in South Boston.
A year ago, the chamber’s CEO, Jim Rooney,opted to highlight Boston’s role as a global city during his first annual meeting as the chamber’s top executive. This year, Rooney decided to focus on what he referred to as “return on influence” — honoring business leaders who share their successes by donating their time, talent, and money to make the Boston area a better place.
After the famed lawyer and Brockton native Ken Feinberg gave the keynote address, chamber leaders inducted five more people into the organization’s “Academy of Distinguished Bostonians.” They are Joyce and Bill Cummings, founders of Cummings Properties and the first Massachusetts couple to sign the Giving Pledge; Carol Fulp, CEO of The Partnership Inc., a nonprofit that fosters careers for minority professionals; and philanthropists Sandy Edgerley, Hexagon Properties’ president, and Paul Edgerley, senior adviser at Bain Capital.
Speaking before the event, Rooney said it’s important to highlight successful executives who give back to the community. “Some of the rhetoric around the [proposed] millionaires tax is that ‘We have to get more out of them,’ ” he said. “Here are some living examples of people that don’t fit that narrative that we too often hear of successful business people being bad, being greedy. . . . This is intended to celebrate people who have given their time, their talent and their treasure in meaningful ways.”
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