The Bay Area Impact Investing Initiative

Lauryn Agnew has been leading the efforts for the Bay Area Impact Investing Initiative which is gaining momentum: visit for more information.

Initially based on research developed over the last couple years, the Bay Area Impact Investing Initiative was created to explore whether we could build a financial structure that would encourage and enable institutional investors to allocate to investing in their own backyards, recycling some of the local wealth back into our communities and aligning with a mission of regional, sustainable economic prosperity.

It started as a research study for the United Way of the Bay Area.  We were challenged to build a stock-and-bond portfolio that would be aligned with the mission to reduce poverty in the Bay Area by ½ by 2020.  The research was encouraged by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, who published the report and posted it on their website in December 2012.

This research led to a Fed sponsored day-long conference on May 7, with an outstanding group of panelists discussing the challenges and opportunities of impact investing in the regional economy of the San Francisco Bay Area.

For the agenda and white papers:

To watch the video of the speakers and panels:

Many of us became convinced that adding impact intentions to our investment portfolios could not only improve our impact, it can also produce comparably strong returns to investors.   The Bay Area Impact Investing Initiative  (BAIII or BA Triple I) was formed to undertake the research to build model portfolios in all asset classes, under fiduciary standards of diversification, due diligence and prudent expectations of risk and return that would also have a positive impact on the economy and people of the San Francisco Bay Area.

Our research will include a market survey to identify investment beliefs about impact investing and place-based investing, as well as educational presentations to groups of investors, students, and communities.  We have built a small active team, an advisory board of experts, an advisory council of professionals, and retained a fiscal sponsor.

Welcome to our journey – join our efforts to prove that impact investing can work for institutional investors, helping to keep our own regional economy healthy, innovative, diverse and strong.

To learn more about the growing field of impact investing, see our research section for more information.