Carol is internationally recognized for her work in Purpose and CSR. Carol Cone ON PURPOSE, is the return to her entrepreneurial roots and life’s passion: to educate, inspire and accelerate purpose programs and impacts for organizations, nonprofits and individuals around the globe.
For over 25 years, she’s embraced a steadfast commitment to building lasting partnerships between companies, brands and social issues for deep business and societal impact. She adamantly feels that today, companies and brands must stand for something beyond the bottom line. When she began her work, companies and brands questioned “if” they should engage with social issues. In today’s totally transparent, social world, it is now about “how” brands and companies express their values and character through authentic engagement with society.
She is also a recognized thought leader in Purpose, having conducted dozens of research studies with business executives, citizens, employees and nonprofits to gain critical insights to inspire organizations to engage with society as wise business strategy. She is a sought-after speaker and media expert, sharing her insights on purpose branding, corporate citizenship, sustainability and CSR.
For the past five years, she created and led the Business + Social Purpose practice for Edelman. There she personally serviced a variety of clients: Microsoft, Unilever, the American Lung Association, Girl Scouts of the USA, Southwest Airlines, PNC Financial Services, HP, the Bezos Family Foundation and Quaker, among others.
From 1980 – 2010 she was the Founder, CEO and Chairman of Cone, Inc., recognized as the nation’s leading cause branding consultancy. There she led the development of signature cause branding programs for forward-thinking Fortune 500 companies and nonprofit organizations, including the Avon Breast Cancer Crusade, ConAgra Foods’ Feeding Children Better, PNC Grow Up Great, the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Movement, P & G’s Live, Learn and Thrive, ITT Watermark, Western Union’s Our World, Our Family, and Reebok’s Human Rights programs. Overall, Cone’s signature cause programs have raised more than $2 billion for various social causes.
In 2007, PR Week called her “arguably the most powerful and visible figure in the world of Cause Branding.” Programs she and her teams created have won hundreds of awards for excellence around the globe. Four of her campaigns are cases at the Harvard Business School.
In 2009, she was a judge for the first PR Lions Awards at the Cannes Festival of Creativity. Her first book, Breakthrough NonProfit Branding was published in 2010.
Other key career highlights: hosting over 200 interns during her leadership of Cone; building a Habitat for Humanity house as an employee engagement program, and developing “Making Change for Katrina,” a nationwide coin collection program to fund-raise for the Katrina disaster. Her most special moment: meeting the Dalai Lama prior to her speech in Calgary, titled: “The Power of Business for Good.” When she met him, he held her hand for 5 minutes. It was about a week before she got the nerve to wash that hand!