Cordes Foundation
In 2006, Ron Cordes and his family started to make some changes. First, Cordes sold his successful business, AssetMark Investment Services, to Genworth Financial. Then, after a short three-year stint as CEO of Genworth Wealth Management, Ron and Marty Cordes started giving back.

After $10 million in donations, Ron had begun devoting his time to the initiatives of the Cordes Foundation, and stayed on as co-chairman of Genworth. Marty had started devoting her time to the organizations that the Cordes Foundation supports — organizations that empower women and girls and promote global human rights.

Three key initiatives pave the way for the Cordes Foundation:

1.  Catalyzing new sources of capital for impact investments.

Cordes started building the foundations of this initiative when he co-founded ImpactAssets, a nonprofit that garners investment capital to achieve the greatest impact possible in various global environmental, social and financial issues. ImpactAssests has its own set of goals, which include creating positive social and environmental impacts that generate a return for investors.

2. Equipping the next generation of social entrepreneurs.

The Cordes Foundation does this by supporting the Global Center for Social Entrepreneurship. It is a university-based center where practice and training are offered to young social entrepreneurs. The center works to instill values of solution-mindedness and innovation in the coming generations.

3. Connect and support global leaders in social enterprise.

As co-chairs of the Opportunity Collaboration, Marty and Ron foster the sharing of innovation between a number of different parties like social entrepreneurs, impact investors and the public sector. The collaboration gets together annually in October, when 300 delegates gather to represent leaders from 30 countries. But the Cordes Foundation is certainly not alone. It serves as a great example of two recent trends that are quickly gaining speed.

Cordes has five pieces of advice for his daughter:

  • Seek Your Passion,
  • Do Your Best
  • Good Enough is Never Good Enough
  • No Excuses
  • Make a Difference

Cordes seems to be doing all of those things as he takes part in the wave of nonprofit family organizations that have the potential to leave a positive legacy across the world. These family nonprofits offer philanthropists a way to better control their giving, and just like Cordes, they work to leave their children and the next generation with values of generosity and compassion.

Cordes says “Since my early 40s, I had an itch that there was something else out there that I could be accomplishing and a greater purpose out that I could be achieving than running a successful business. The opportunity to sell the business gave me the resources so I could pursue that. I went from trying to build the best business in the world to building the best businesses for the world.”

Ron Cordes represents a great example of how the encore career later in life can be beneficial in the fight against global poverty, hunger and other humanitarian efforts.

– Rachel Davis

Sources: Forbes, New York Times