Dan Pallotta invented the multi-day charitable event industry with the AIDS Rides and Breast Cancer 3-Days. These events altered the landscape of options for ordinary individuals seeking to make an extraordinary difference.
Dan’s work brought the practice of four-figure philanthropy within the reach of the average citizen who had never raised money for charity before in their lives. 182,000 people of all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds participated in these inspiring, often grueling, long-distance events that raised $582 million in nine years – more money raised more quickly for these causes than any private event operation in history. Three million people donated to the events.
To put this in perspective, the events that Dan’s company — Pallotta TeamWorks — created and produced, raised more money than the American Express Charge Against Hunger ($21 million), Pepsi Refresh ($15 million), Hands Across America ($34 million), USA for Africa ($66 million), Product (RED) ($150 million), Kiva ($100 million), and American Idol Gives Back ($175 million) combined as of 2011.
The company had approximately 400 full-time employees in 16 U.S. offices, won Brandweek’s Best Cause-Related Event Award, and was the subject of a Harvard Business School case study on social enterprise. Its concepts and methods are employed today by dozens of charities in a variety of events throughout the world that raise approximately one hundred million dollars annually for important social causes. To date the industry has raised in excess of $1.5 billion for important causes in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K employing innovations Dan pioneered in the sector.
Dan is the author of Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential, the best-selling title in the history of Tufts University Press. The Stanford Social Innovation Review said that it “deserves to become the nonprofit sector’s new manifesto,” and which contributed to a new conversation about economic freedom for the humanitarian sector. His newest book is Charity Case: How the Nonprofit Community Can Stand Up for Itself and Really Change the World from Jossey-Bass. Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. described it as “An Apollo program for American philanthropy and the nonprofit sector”.
Dan is a featured weekly contributor to the Harvard Business Review online.
Dan is the founder and Chief Humanity Officer of a full-service brand and inspiration agency for the humanitarian sector. He is also founder and President of the Charity Defense Council, a new national leadership movement dedicated to transforming the way the donating public thinks about charity and change.
He is a William J. Clinton Distinguished Lecturer, and has spoken at Stanford, Wharton, Harvard Business School, Harvard’s Hauser Center for Nonprofits, Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, Tufts University, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, the Council on Foundations, the Gates Foundation, Hewlett Foundation, and the Milken Institute, among others.