Steven C. Rockefeller, Jr. believes that microfinance offers a large-scale, sustainable solution to move people out of poverty. He expresses his enthusiasm for Grameen Foundation and microfinance through both personal and professional channels. As managing director of Deutsche Bank Private Wealth Management, he played a central role in creating Deutsche Bank Microcredit Development Fund, which helps clients link to microfinance programs through a bank-sponsored product. Steven served on Grameen Foundation’s board of directors for more than seven years and now serves on our development committee.
Steven’s participation in several microfinance trips and conferences has been instrumental. In 2000, he led a Grameen Foundation conference in New York with three of India's leading microfinance practitioners. This meeting helped raise both awareness and capital at a critical time in the microfinance institutions' growth. He recently returned from a poverty-alleviation trip to Papua New Guinea, where he worked with a Malaysian industrial company to build microfinance programs there and solicited additional support from the Chinese government.
Steven has also helped others see the difference that microfinance makes in the lives of poor families. He helped coordinate professional baseball player Alfonso Soriano's trip to his native Dominican Republic, where Alfonso met with microfinance clients, witnessed the impact of microfinance in local communities, and became a supporter of microfinance and Grameen Foundation.
Steven's optimism continues to inspire others to become involved with Grameen Foundation and microfinance. "Microfinance brings greater access to health, education and safe housing for clients and their families," he says. "While people often become attached to the initial desperate need of microfinance clients, my interaction with microfinance has, more than anything, brought a sense of hope and happiness."
Grameen Foundation thanks Steven for his ongoing generosity, support, participation, and leadership, all critical to our efforts to help the world’s poor lift themselves into better lives.