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Fearless Changemakers Surround Us

By Michael Smith, Senior Vice President — Social Innovation, The Case Foundation

Earlier this year, we at the Case Foundation declared our intention to Be Fearless in all that we do. As we reflected on the 15 years since Jean and Steve Case created the Foundation, we realized that we — and our partners — were best when we were willing to dream big, experiment with new approaches, and admit our failures so that we could learn from them. We were best when we were fearless.

In a time when social challenges seem to be getting bigger and more complex, those of us charged with finding and funding solutions cannot be satisfied with the status quo. In a world where athletes, entrepreneurs, and explorers are all supposed to be fearless, for some reason many leaders responsible for lifting up communities and changing the world for the better have often become safe, incremental, measured, and sometimes slow to act. It’s time to change the game. That’s why not only have we declared our intention to Be Fearless, but we are committed to inviting others to help us define a fearless approach to social change, to spread the concept far and wide, to learn and experiment together, and to uncover the fearless changemakers and change movements already happening in communities in the US and around the world.

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