Greensboro, NC – Christopher Gergen’s successful journey as an entrepreneur and social innovator started in Santiago, Chile and spanned the United States as he founded a series of education and service organizations. His latest stop: the top-ranked Center for Creative Leadership.
Gergen, founding partner of the entrepreneurial leadership development company New Mountain Ventures, will serve as a CCL Innovator in Residence for 2010. He will spend time each month at CCL’s offices on projects involving youth leadership, product development and social innovation — as well as exploring the intersection between talent development and community/organizational growth.
“At CCL, translating ideas into action is a top priority, and Christopher does that remarkably well,” said David G. Altman, CCL’s Executive Vice President of Research, Innovation and Product Development. “His impressive record as an entrepreneur dedicated to serving young people speaks for itself, and his professional passions overlap with CCL’s in many ways. We’re excited to see what we can do together.”
Gergen is the co-author of Life Entrepreneurs: Ordinary People Creating Extraordinary Lives, published in 2008 by Jossey-Bass. He’s also a visiting lecturer and director of the Entrepreneurial Leadership Initiative at Duke University’s Terry Sanford School of Public Policy. He’s the co-founder and a founding board member of SMARTHINKING, which serves 200,000 students and 1,000 universities, colleges and high schools as the leading online tutoring provider in the United States.
“The caliber of the CCL team is unparalleled. True to their name, they push the envelope on creativity and are transforming the way leaders are developed and supported,” Gergen said. “CCL is also increasingly focused on developing next generation leaders as well as expanding into new, typically under-served communities. I’m thrilled to be joining forces with this exceptional team, and I’m really looking forward to seeing what emerges from our collaboration.”
Gergen’s other entrepreneurial ventures included opening a coffee house and bar in Santiago that promoted the arts and helping launch EntrepreneurCorps, a national service initiative sponsored by AmericaCorpsVISTA. He is also a founding board member of the E.L. Haynes Public Charter School in Washington, D.C. Gergen currently spear-heads an initiative in Durham, N.C., to dramatically accelerate the region’s entrepreneurial output — the center-piece of which is a 20,000-square-foot downtown social innovation campus.
Gergen holds a B.A. from Duke, an M.A. in Public Policy from George Washington University and an M.B.A. from Georgetown University. He lives with his family in Durham, N.C.