Cheryl L. Dorsey
1992 Echoing Green Fellow
Cheryl L. Dorsey is a trailblazer in the social entrepreneurship movement, and the president of Echoing Green, a global nonprofit that supports emerging social entrepreneurs and invests deeply in their ideas and leadership.
Prior to leading this social impact organization, Cheryl was a social entrepreneur herself and received an Echoing Green Fellowship in 1992 to help launch The Family Van, a community-based mobile health unit in Boston. She became the first Echoing Green Fellow to head the social venture fund in 2002.
An accomplished leader and entrepreneur, she has served in two presidential administrations as a White House Fellow and Special Assistant to the U.S. Secretary of Labor (1997-98); Special Assistant to the Director of the Women's Bureau of the U.S. Labor Department (1998-99); and Vice Chair for the President's Commission on White House Fellowships (2009-2017). Cheryl serves on several boards including The Bridgespan Group, Skoll Foundation, Oak Street Health and Northeast Bank and, previously, the Harvard Board of Overseers. She has a medical degree from Harvard Medical School, a master’s in public policy from Harvard Kennedy School, and a bachelor’s degree in history and science magna cum laude with highest honors from Harvard-Radcliffe Colleges.
Cheryl is a frequent speaker on racial justice and equity in philanthropy. She has advocated for equitable funding for leaders of color on panels organized by The Stanford Social Innovation Review, Skoll World Forum, The World Economic Forum, and more. In 2020, Cheryl co-authored a research report in partnership with The Bridgespan Group, Racial Equity and Philanthropy: Disparities in Funding for Leaders of Color Leave Impact on the Table.
Cheryl has received numerous awards for her commitment to public service, including the Pfizer Roerig History of Medicine Award, the Robert Kennedy Distinguished Public Service Award, the Manuel C. Carballo Memorial Prize, and Middlebury College Center for Social Entrepreneurship’s Vision Award. She was also featured as one of “America’s Best Leaders” by US News & World Report and the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard Kennedy School in 2009, one of The Nonprofit Times’ “Power and Influence Top 50” in 2010 and 2011, one of “America’s Top 25 Philanthropy Speakers” by the Business of Giving in 2016, and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences since 2017. In 2019, Cheryl was named a Schwab Foundation Social Innovation Thought Leader.
Find Cheryl on the Fellow Directory