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Dr. Wayne Curtis is a 2013 graduate of the PhD Program in Leadership & Change at Antioch University.


business costs, economics, social entrepreneurship, wealth building, labor economics, organizational behavior, organizational theory, finance, financial independence

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This study investigated how the elements of social entrepreneurship with wealth-building strategies can advance the creation of wealth and serve as a mechanism for social change. This research takes a modest first step toward demystifying social entrepreneurship, better understanding the phenomenon, and exploring the relevance of wealth-building in social entrepreneurial activity. Specifically, this exploratory study used a multiple case study design to understand how existing social entrepreneurial ventures include wealth-building strategies, such as employee stock ownership plans for working class Americans. The concept of social entrepreneurship is relatively new. There is general agreement that the concept combines a passion for pursuing social mission with business discipline and innovation to achieve sustainable social change, such as wealth-building for employees. There is considerably less knowledge about the connection of social entrepreneurship to wealth building; these two concepts are generally treated as separate and often unrelated. Nonetheless, there are various tools utilized to advance wealth building, such as savings plans that are matched by foundations, debt-reduction counseling services, and entrepreneurial training programs to help start small businesses. This exploratory study may represent the first attempt to combine the discussion of social entrepreneurship and wealth building in the same research discussion. The final cases used in this study represent three distinct business industries: the educational sector, the advocacy industry, and a professional firm specializing in design and build architecture. Each of the three cases has been in existence for a minimum of 25 years, and the founders of the companies are directly or tangentially still involved in day-to-day operations. Two of the cases have an employee stock ownership plan and the remaining one another form of wealth building. This dissertation is accompanied by the author’s MP4 file, titled Author_IntroductionCurtis.mp4. The electronic version of this Dissertation is at Ohiolink ETD Center,


Dr. Curtis is a managing partner with Curtis Concepts, LLC (


Above: Dr. Curtis at his dissertation defense, Spring 2013, Antioch University, Yellow Springs, Ohio. Photo by Tayo Switzer.

Author_IntroductionCurtis.mp4 (7356 kB)
Author Introduction. Wayne Curtis