Everything the donating public has been taught about giving is dysfunctional, says AIDS Ride founder Dan Pallotta. He aims to transform the way society thinks about charity and giving and change.

Why you should listen

"The nonprofit sector is critical to our dream of changing the world. Yet there is no greater injustice than the double standard that exists between the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. One gets to feast on marketing, risk-taking, capital and financial incentive, the other is sentenced to begging,” Dan Pallotta says in discussing his latest book, Charity Case. This economic starvation of our nonprofits is why he believes we are not moving the needle on great social problems. “My goal … is to fundamentally transform the way the public thinks about charity within 10 years.”

Pallotta is best known for creating the multi-day charitable event industry, and a new generation of philanthropists with the AIDS Rides and Breast Cancer 3-Day events, which raised $582 million in nine years. He is president of Advertising for Humanity, which helps foundations and philanthropists transform the growth potential of their favorite grantees. He is also the founder and President of the Charity Defense Council.

What others say

“He liberates charity from its Puritan constraints and cogently attaches it to entrepreneurship.” — Gary Hart

Dan Pallotta’s TED talk

More news and ideas from Dan Pallotta

Recommended reading

Rethink the way we run charities: A useful reading list

July 7, 2014

Dan Pallotta has an unconventional view of nonprofits: To innovate and really make an impact, he thinks they should function with business-minded acumen. But, bringing principles of the corporate world into the nonprofit sector can be a tough sell. Here, he recommends 8 articles that give more insight into why we should put a value on effective philanthropy.

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