Christopher is CEO of Forward Impact that unleashes the impact potential of next generation entrepreneurial leaders. This work includes launching community-based strategies to develop and scale high-impact entrepreneurs including Bull City Forward in Durham, NC, Queen City Forward in Charlotte, NC, Moore Forward in Moore County, NC, HQ Raleigh, and Think House – an entrepreneurial living community in Raleigh. Forward Impact also helps schools, universities, and communities develop transformational entrepreneurial leadership experiences with partners such as the Center for Creative Leadership, where Christopher is Innovator in Residence. Forward Impact also consults with state and national clients including helping launch and scale the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation’s Social Entrepreneurship Initiative, Carolina CAN, and the NC Charter School Accelerator. This work complements Christopher’s role as a social entrepreneurship fellow with Duke University’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship initiative.
Christopher is co-author of the nationally acclaimed book Life Entrepreneurs: Ordinary People Creating Extraordinary Lives and co-authors a bi-weekly column on social innovation for the Raleigh News & Observer and the Charlotte Observer titled “Doing Better at Doing Good.” Christopher was recently selected as a 2013 Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute and serves on several local, state, and national boards including the NC Museum of Natural Science’s Citizen Science Council, Duke’s Nasher Art Museum, and the National Center on Entrepreneurship & Innovation.
In 1999, Christopher co-founded SMARTHINKING that became the leading online tutoring provider in the United States before being acquired by Pearson Education in 2011. Other ventures include starting a coffeehouse/bar in Santiago, Chile and “Entrepreneur Corps”—an AmeriCorps*VISTA initiative that placed 400 full-time business volunteers for a year of service in over 90 non-profits. Previously, Christopher started LEAD!, a leadership, entrepreneurship, and service program for Gonzaga College high school students in Washington, D.C. and is a founding board member of the E.L. Haynes Public Charter School also in D.C. Further experience includes serving as Vice President of New Market Development for K12 Inc. and Chief Operating Officer for New American Schools. Christopher received a Bachelor of Arts with honors from Duke University, a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the George Washington University, and his M.B.A. from Georgetown University. He lives with his wife and two children in Durham, NC.