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  • Title
    CEO
  • Affiliation
    BlackRock

As leader of the world’s biggest asset manager, overseeing $6.28 trillion, Fink knows how to put his money where his mouth is. In his annual missive to CEOs in January, the BlackRock cofounder called for each company to not just perform financially “but also show how it makes a positive contribution to society.” Fink’s mandate mirrors the philosophy that has lately driven BlackRock’s strategy—which is that shareholders will lose in the long run if companies ignore broader social concerns today. A longtime advocate for tax reform, Fink also warned companies to figure out what they’re going to do with their tax windfalls “to create long-term value”—before activist investors force their hand. But the most potent example of how BlackRock is practicing its principles came after February’s school shooting in Parkland, Fla. Not only did BlackRock seek answers on violence prevention measures by gun retailers and manufacturers it owns—several of which subsequently changed their policies—but in April it unveiled new funds that allow investors to divest from those stocks entirely. As Fink told CEOs, “Society is demanding that companies, both public and private, serve a social purpose.”

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