Corporate Responsibility

The Province of St. Joseph, like any institutional investor, wants a good return on its investments.  Income generated through stocks, bonds and other instruments helps support friars in their retirement and education, provides additional funds to support our ministries, and represents good stewardship of the gifts that we have received from our benefactors.

For the Province and others, however, there are other elements of “the bottom line” beyond the financial.  In addition, we are concerned about the social and environmental impacts of corporate decisions.  For example, it is good for an energy company to make a profit but not at the expense of irreparably harming the environment.  It is appropriate for those who manage a company well to be rewarded for their diligence and stewardship; but those who actually produce that company’s goods or offer their services should also receive just wages and benefits.

The primary goal of the Province’s Corporate Responsibility Program is to ensure that the companies in which we invest are attentive to this “Triple Bottom Line.”  We do this in partnership with other religious and institutional investors, chiefly through the Wisconsin Iowa Minnesota Coalition on Responsible Investment (WIMCRI) and the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), based in New York.  For more information about ICCR, please visit their website:  www.iccr.org.

Capuchin Friar Michael Crosby has been the pioneer among Catholic organizations who are following the U.S. Bishops’ guidelines in how to use their investments to bring about greater social justice on a host of issues from human rights to environmental integrity. He advises 20 such groups in Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota and represents them at the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility in New York.