Bo Parfet Takes Leadocracy Pledge, Government Leadership Challenge

Bo Parfet has had a successful career as a financier and entrepreneur. He is a natural leader as much in his professional career as in his personal endeavors. Parfet is an adventurer and naturalist by heart. He has summited the peaks of the world’s tallest mountains and joined research missions to discover extremophiles living in the most inhospitable climates on earth.

Parfet comes from a long line of successful entrepreneurs and philanthropists. His current role as co-founder and CEO of Denali Venture Philanthropy (Denali) has allowed him to fuse his professional expertise in asset management with his long-time passion for fostering social change. Denali is an investment organization that funds for-profit companies, non-profits, and social entrepreneurs committed to addressing significant global issues in education, healthcare, poverty, and environmental protection, among others.

Bo Parfet is a civic and community leader, both as an active global volunteer and as a local community advocate in his hometown of Boulder, Colorado. It is in this vein that Parfet recently took the Leadocracy Pledge, a government leadership challenge organized by leadership expert, author, and acclaimed speaker, Geoff Smart.

In 2012, Smart published his book titled, Leadocracy: Hiring More Great Leaders (Like You) into Government. In it, he describes why private sector leaders need to take a more active stance in civic leadership roles. As chairman and founder of ghSMART, a leadership consulting firm with a credo that begins with, “We exist to help leaders amplify their positive impact on the world,” Smart saw that our governmental system was broken, and when someone asked him to take initiative to help fix it, he jumped at the opportunity.

Smart developed a plan to unite private sector leaders, encouraging their involvement with local, state, and federal government policies and actions. This plan includes involvement with the Leadership Institute and Leadocracy Pledge. The Leadocracy Pledge allows business leaders to commit themselves to serve at least two years in government. Smart says he hopes to have 1,500 private sector leaders serve at least a two-year stint in government by the year 2030.

In the book, Smart paints a picture that explains to leaders exactly why their professional skills are so necessary in the fight to fix the systemic issues of our current democracy. Some of our country’s most successful private sector leaders possess qualities that help them get things done. Successful CEOs and executives know how to do the hard things rather than the expedient ones, to lead rather than to follow, and to stand firmly on their characters and those of their team members. Smart shares that the unfortunate side of career politicians is that they lose these qualities the further they move within the system.

The Leadocracy Pledge has been likened to that of a “leadership adventure of a lifetime” and Bo Parfet is not one to shy away from a new adventure. Making governmental decisions based on leadership talent and not just politics is a very logical way to improve our current system. Moving politics aside and letting these leaders do what they do best will make for a better, more informed democracy. Great leaders like Parfet will work hard to make choices for the greater good, making the opportunity one of the best experiences of their lives.

For Bo Parfet, the decision to make the pledge was easy. As an advocate for social change in both his personal and professional endeavors, Parfet is encouraged to work within the political system to provide his local and state governments with the right leaders who will work hard to invoke positive change for our communities.

About Bo Parfet

Bo Parfet is a financier, philanthropist, mountaineer, naturalist, and author. He is co-founder and CEO of Denali Venture Philanthropy (Denali), an impact investment organization on a mission to drive positive social change.

Parfet’s career began as a Research Fellow at the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), then moving into a career with J.P. Morgan as an investment banker on Wall Street. He also founded Iconic Development, a successful real estate development firm, and has a current role as Managing Director of the DLP Prosperity Membership at DLP Real Estate Capital.

Parfet’s personal accomplishments include completing the Seven Summits, reaching the top of the highest peaks on each of the seven continents, and participating in research missions to discover extremophiles inside Mount Kilimanjaro’s vast, arid craters.

Parfet is a member of the Explorer’s Club and Young Professionals Organization. He is an advisory board member for the non-profit, Adventure Scientists. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Colorado State University, a Masters in Applied Economics from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. Parfet resides in Boulder, Colorado with his family.

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