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Impact Investing: Eco$Models that Work

 

“As an ‘impact investor’ in Grasslands, one of the true, unanticipated delights has been the amazing quality of the people the project has attracted. By connecting one’s investments with, and in the process building life experiences and careers for, real people doing real wealth creating work connected to the land, an investor experiences a profoundly different meaning in the word “value” than experienced when picking a good hedge fund to invest in. This is what we mean by the “purpose of capital” at Capital Institute.“

John Fullerton, President of Capital Institute details the impact CI’s capital investment is having on Montana and South Dakota eco-ventures.

 

From Capital Institute:

Meet the Grasslands Ranchers, our second installment of the Grasslands Story, a project of the Capital Lab’s Field Guide to Investing in a Resilient Economy, illuminates the talents and eloquence of our growing family of Grasslands ranchers. Here they talk about what inspires them and what they struggle within their daily lives, their insights into holistic management, and their understanding of how their work is contributing to the healing of the land and the rural communities in which they live.   The Grasslands photographs that illustrate this update were taken by Capital Institute Fellow David Nicola on a recent visit to the South Dakota and Montana ranches. 

Reflections on Investing in Grasslands from Capital Institute Founder John Fullerton

As an “impact investor,” one of the true and unanticipated delights that has come with our association with the Savory Institute and our management team led by experienced Holistic Management practitioner Jim Howell has been the amazing quality of the people the project has attracted.  A “cowboy ethic” is still alive and well in America, and no doubt throughout the world. It is a combination of the salt of the earth values of integrity, fairness, and hard work, combined with an enlightened ecological awareness and commitment to care for the land and the wildlife.  Some prefer the term “pastoralists,” the vast grasslands equivalent of the permaculture farmer.  

As you will see from the comments below, Grasslands is building a team of truly great people making it happen every day on the ground.  Some quite young, some less young.  Like we see with the new breed of organic farmers, there is great hope in the enthusiasm of the next generation to be smarter than us old folks.  Such hope is made a reality by our young team working on Grasslands ranches this summer.  I imagine this can be true in finance as well some day, when finance rediscovers its proper purpose in the economy.  This is likely to come with the next generation as well, rather than from mass epiphanies in the old guard.  

I consider it a real privilege to know my Grasslands colleagues, and to have the opportunity to work with them and learn from them in the years to come.  And I don’t just mean learn about managing cattle!  This is the kind of “value” that does not show up in the quarterly statements of one’s investment portfolio.  By connecting one’s investments with, and in the process building life experiences and careers for, real people doing real wealth creating work connected to the land, an investor experiences a profoundly different meaning in the word “value” than experienced when simply picking a clever hedge fund to invest in.  This is what we mean by the “purpose of capital” at Capital Institute.   — John Fullerton, Director, Investor, Grasslands, LLC

 From www.CapitalistInstitute.org – Building a Resilient Economy

http://www.capitalinstitute.org/capital-lab/field-guide-investing-resilient-economy/grasslands/meet-ranchers

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