23 Jul 2014
Harvard Business School Appoints Matt Segneri Director of Its Social Enterprise Initiative

BOSTON—Harvard Business School (HBS) has named Matthew M. Segneri (MBA 2010) the new Director of its Social Enterprise Initiative (SEI), succeeding Laura Moon, who has become Managing Director of the School’s wide array of Initiatives, which focus on research and course development in specific topics such as leadership, health care, and digital technology.

Established in 1993 with the help of a generous gift from John C. Whitehead (MBA 1947), the SEI pioneered the concept of “social enterprise” with the adoption of a problem-focused approach toward understanding the management and leadership challenges facing organizations involved in creating social value regardless of their structure (profit, nonprofit, or hybrid) or the source of their funding (from grants to commercial transactions).

As Director, Segneri, who recently arrived on campus to start in his new role, is responsible for working with the Initiative’s faculty co-chairs, Professors Herman B. “Dutch” Leonard and V. Kasturi “Kash” Rangan, to oversee SEI’s strategic objectives and operational goals and manage a range of programs and activities, including those that support research and teaching, educational programs within the MBA and Executive Education curricula, MBA field-based learning and career support programs, and alumni outreach and engagement.

“We are very pleased to welcome back Matt to direct the Social Enterprise Initiative as it enters its third decade at a time when HBS students are more eager than ever to play a significant role in social enterprises of all kinds,” said Professor Rangan. “From his days as a Harvard MBA student to his work at the highest levels of big city governments, he has made a lasting impact through his vision, strategic and operational skills, and energy and hard work.” Professor Leonard added, “With his commitment to effecting social change and driving innovation in the social sector, Matt is ready and able to lead the Social Enterprise Initiative to new heights at this important juncture in its history.”

Matt Segneri

Segneri comes to Harvard Business School with a broad range of leadership experience in the private, public, and nonprofit sectors, most recently at Bloomberg Philanthropies in New York City, where he was a senior leader on the Government Innovation team. In that role, he developed and led initiatives at the foundation founded by former Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg (MBA 1966) to promote public and social sector innovation and spread proven and promising ideas among cities.

From 2010 to 2012, Segneri was an advisor to the then-mayor of the City of Boston, Thomas M. Menino. Serving as an HBS Leadership Fellow during his first year in that position, he led policy development and implementation initiatives and provided management counsel to the mayor and his cabinet officers. Promoted to senior advisor after his Fellowship year, he was Mayor Menino’s chief advisor on service and social entrepreneurship. In addition, he launched and led budget, civic engagement, education, economic development, and public safety initiatives.

An honors graduate of Harvard College (2004), where he majored in psychology, with additional studies in economics and government, Segneri spent four years (2004-2008) as a consultant at the Monitor Group in its New York City and Cambridge, Mass., offices before entering Harvard Business School. In his second year, he was co-president of the Social Enterprise Club, which has long been one of the School’s largest and most active student organizations. In addition, he was team leader for the New Orleans Service and Leadership Immersion Program, which brought HBS students to New Orleans to work on various projects after the destruction caused by Hurricane Katrina.

Awarded a Social Enterprise Summer Fellowship, he spent the summer of 2009 as an intern at the headquarters of the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington, D.C., working with other interns from MBA programs around the country to help the FBI address some of its most complex management challenges, including the design of a new and improved promotion process for Special Agents.

“I am excited and honored to return to HBS and the Social Enterprise Initiative, both of which have been so influential in my personal and professional life,” Segneri said. “This is an incredible opportunity to give back to the School and inspire, educate, and support leaders committed to solving our most intractable social and economic problems.”

About Harvard Business School

Founded in 1908 as part of Harvard University, Harvard Business School is located on a 40-acre campus in Boston. Its faculty of more than 200 offers full-time programs leading to the MBA and doctoral degrees, as well as more than 80 open enrollment Executive Education programs and more than 60 custom programs. For more than a century, HBS faculty have drawn on their research, their experience in working with organizations worldwide, and their passion for teaching to educate leaders who have shaped the practice of business and entrepreneurship around the globe.


Jim Aisner
Director of Media & Public Relations