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Author Archive: Dawn Carpenter

Dawn Carpenter is a banker with the heart of a teacher and scholar. She is a veteran of Wall Street who studies what Christian theology has to tell us about the nature and value of work and the responsibilities of wealth. Using the experience of her nearly 25 year banking career, Ms. Carpenter serves as a Practitioner Fellow at Georgetown University's Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor. She is also a founding Advisory Board member to the School of Business and Economics at Catholic University of America, chairman of the Investment Committee and member of the Finance Committee of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Black and Indian Mission, and as the Co-Chair of the Advisory Board of DC Habitat for Humanity.

Ms. Carpenter is currently working toward a doctorate in Liberal Studies at Georgetown University where her groundbreaking research investigates the nature of work and the responsibilities of wealth. She has previously earned a M.A. in systematic theology from the Notre Dame Graduate School of Theology at Christendom College, a M.P.M. in public finance from the University of Maryland, and a M.A./B.A. in political science from American University. Ms. Carpenter and her family reside in Washington, DC.

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St. Teresa of Calcutta and the Resurrection of Labor Sunday

September 4, AD2016 1 Comment
St. Teresa of Calcutta and the Resurrection of Labor Sunday

Sunday, September 4, 2016, is a providential date for many reasons.  Not only is it a beautiful capstone for the Year of Mercy through the international celebration of the canonization of Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, but it is also the day that marks Labor Sunday in the United States, a day to honor the spiritual […]

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Faith and Wealth: Rich Dad, Poor Dad Revisited

August 6, AD2016 1 Comment
Faith and Wealth: Rich Dad, Poor Dad Revisited

  Rich Dad, Poor Dad is one of this generation’s most iconic financial literacy books.  Written by Kiyosaki and Lechter in the late 1990s, it has sold over 26 million copies and has been touted by celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey and Will Smith—not to mention Donald Trump, who later collaborated with Kiyosaki to leverage […]

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What Theology Teaches About Corporate Responsibility

June 9, AD2016 11 Comments
What Theology Teaches About Corporate Responsibility

As business people, sometimes we forget just how connected the world of work is to the work of God in the world. Without question, individual business persons are moral agents. However, based upon the accepted conception of the corporation, there is often a lack of consistency in the view of the moral agency of the […]

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God’s Fingerprints On Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand

May 18, AD2016 4 Comments
God’s Fingerprints On Adam Smith’s Invisible Hand

For those who know economics, Adam Smith is a beloved patriarch. Not only was the 18th-century Scottish thinker the father of modern economics, he was also moral philosopher. This intellectual combination was not unusual in his day, but it is rare in ours. His highly-influential work on the economic order is titled An Inquiry into the […]

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Economic Personalism: Tool for Morality in Markets

April 13, AD2016 6 Comments
Economic Personalism: Tool for Morality in Markets

No matter what your ideology, there is common disdain for market manipulators, fraud, and theft. There is little disagreement about the repugnance of taking advantage of senior citizens through deceptive investment schemes or conning vulnerable families into unsustainable mortgages. There is even growing consensus on the shamefulness of polluting factories and the exploitation of child […]

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5 Things Every Catholic Businessperson Must Know

March 16, AD2016 1 Comment
5 Things Every Catholic Businessperson Must Know

A few years ago, I had an interesting conversation with one of our country’s most well-known and respected business leaders. It started as I was chatting with the man’s wife, and she asked me what I did for fun. I could have told her I enjoyed golf, or gardening, or skiing, or any number of […]

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The Eucharist: The Perfect Valentine

February 14, AD2016 3 Comments
The Eucharist: The Perfect Valentine

For Valentine’s Day this year, I am taking a new approach. No more chocolate, fancy dinners or jewelry.  This year’s gift is the ultimate.  This year’s gift is love itself. This year, I am going to give the most precious gift of all.  I am going to give an understanding of how each of us […]

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Answering the Call to Work

January 16, AD2016 1 Comment
Answering the Call to Work

Recent studies show a need for a greater understanding of labor as a Christian call to work. Nearly half the people on the planet are workers. Statically speaking, the UN’s International Labour Organization tallies the world-wide workforce at nearly three billion. Standing hand-in-hand, these workers would circle the globe 11 times. Needless to say, what work […]

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Economic Apologists?

December 19, AD2015 2 Comments
Economic Apologists?

Two years before his death, renowned Catholic social scientist Dr. Rupert Ederer wrote a book entitled Economics as if God Matters. In this book, he endeavored to explain over a century of Catholic magisterial teaching regarding economic matters. Ederer titled his book as such in response to a 1973 book by E.F. Schumacher, Small is Beautiful: Economics […]

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Commerce as an Instrument of Peace

November 21, AD2015 0 Comments
Commerce as an Instrument of Peace

Suffice to say, the establishment of world peace is not in the job description of most CEOs.  But after the most recent terror attacks that brought down a Russian passenger plane and took the lives of innocent people in Beirut, Paris and Mali, the world is joining in growing solidarity. We may be tempted to […]

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A Baby’s Vocation

October 21, AD2015 2 Comments
A Baby’s Vocation

  Today, I say goodbye to a little boy whom I have never met but whose very existence touched hearts around the world. This story began nearly seven months ago. My very dearest friend called me with the good news.  Well, truth be told, that is not exactly how the story goes.  It was more […]

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Capitalism and the Culture of Consumerism

September 22, AD2015 9 Comments
Capitalism and the Culture of Consumerism

    This week we celebrate the feast day of Saint Matthew, patron saint of bankers. Reflecting upon my patron saint, I recall many times having been asked how capitalism can be compatible with Christian theology. As a banker and Catholic intellectual, I draw upon both faith and reason to explain this often misunderstood relationship. […]

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Putting Faith in Your Investments

May 7, AD2015 0 Comments
Putting Faith in Your Investments

As investment professionals, when we think about investments, we think about asset classes: stocks, bonds, hedge funds and the like. As theologians, when we think about investments, we think about “assets” somewhat differently. The challenge is for each to understand the value and insight of the other. In Jesus’ classic teaching on discipleship, we are […]

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A Work Week Theology

April 8, AD2015 3 Comments
A Work Week Theology

There are more of us than there are of them. More laity than religious, that is. Throughout history, the great saints have gifted the Church with unique charisms and rules for religious life. But what does that mean for those who live and work in the world—the other 7.2 billion of us? We are reminded in […]

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Happiness: A Capital Asset?

March 8, AD2015 2 Comments
Happiness:  A Capital Asset?

Ask an accountant what a capital asset is and you will be told that it is an asset owned to generate a profit, but is not easily sold for cash in the normal course of business operations.  In business school, we learn that these are assets such as land, machinery, and buildings—the assets not generally […]

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Michele Ferrero: What Does It Mean to Be Rich?

February 19, AD2015 9 Comments
Michele Ferrero: What Does It Mean to Be Rich?

For some, the answer to the question “what does it mean to be rich?” is revealed every year in the Forbes magazine list of the World’s Billionaires.  This list ranks the richest people on the planet, and in 2014, their collective wealth exceeded $6.4 trillion USD.  Of those on the list in 2014, roughly 66% […]

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Indifference to the Dignity of Work

February 10, AD2015 5 Comments
Indifference to the Dignity of Work

We have all done it. We have walked past a beggar on the street. We have purchased groceries from a cashier whose eyes we did not meet. We have insisted on the least expensive goods available to us. We have been impatient with a doctor when our appointment time is delayed. Some of us have […]

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