Derrick Feldmann is an internationally sought-after speaker, researcher and advisor for cause engagement. He is a recognized leader and expert in helping organizations and corporations better understand the next generation of donors, activists and employees who are redefining causes, and he is the lead researcher and creator of The Millennial Impact Project.



This is a primer for connecting with this digital generation. Based on his years of research for The Millennial Impact Project, Derrick’s presentation will truly transform your thinking about how and why those in their 20s and 30s participate in cause work – and how to involve them in yours.


Derrick explores how individuals think, act and give to causes today and what the future holds in this new era of impulse giving. This speech will have you rethinking your organization’s messages and how you build your next cadre of donors and supporters.


Millennial employees are transforming how companies offer cause work to employees. In this thought-provoking speech, Derrick discusses research-based discoveries on how millennials want to integrate their cause interests into their professional lives.


What millennials seek from work differs significantly from previous generations. Derrick will share research and tried-and-true methods on how companies can engage young adults in the workplace through causes that enhance company culture and leadership.

Derrick’s Bio

Derrick Feldmann is a sought-after speaker, researcher and advisor in cause engagement. He founded Achieve to help organizations address their most pressing issues through research and data-driven, strategically designed fundraising and awareness campaigns.


Derrick is the lead researcher and creator of The Millennial Impact Project, a multi-year study of how the next generation supports causes. This ongoing study has been cited in hundreds of publications, including Forbes, TIME, Fast Company, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. Through this research, as well as in his role at Achieve, Derrick has worked with companies and organizations such as AT&T, Facebook, BMW, PBS and the Case Foundation to understand how the next generation of donors, activists and employees are redefining cause work.


He is the founder of MCON, the nation’s premier conference on millennials and social good, which draws speakers from for- and non-profit organizations across the world. MCON explores the question of whether and how organizations are taking advantage of today’s heightened interest in causes to better serve their constituents.


Derrick is the author of “Social Movements for Good: How Companies and Causes Create Viral Change” (2016) and co-author of the book “Cause for Change: The Why and How of Nonprofit Millennial Engagement” (2012). He is a regular contributor to Philanthropy News Digest and the Huffington Post IMPACT Channel. Derrick is on the Leadership Faculty of the Points of Light Corporate Institute and a guest lecturer for the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University. He is also on the Board of Visitors for the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy.


Derrick received an undergraduate degree from Southeast Missouri State University and a graduate degree from the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University. He went on to lead national fundraising efforts for The LEAGUE and Learning to Give before founding Achieve in 2008.

Social Movements for Good

Social Movements for Good” is a guidebook for driving change by taking advantage of the social “currency” that makes movements go viral. Derrick Feldmann shares secrets and stories from today’s most successful social good movements. You’ll learn about the leaders behind these movements, the individuals who responded, and the approaches that made it work. Modern social movements operate within a new paradigm, and this informative guide walks you through how these movements are created, why people get on board, and the strategy and support network that must be in place for it to succeed.

  • Derrick is an inspirational speaker and author. He breaks down social movements in a way that helps leaders from business, nonprofits, government and communities see their role in social change.

    David B. Smith Managing Director, Presidio Institute
  • The Millennial maestro adds great value to our understanding of what is takes to create, grow and sustain social movements. In a personal and engaging way Derrick walks through the emotional elements that draw people in and motivate them to take action. He offers  great insights and solid data to support his contentions and the reader comes away knowing a lot more about Millennials and social movements.

    Diana Aviv CEO, Feeding America
  • During his time at Valparaiso University, Derrick engaged not only with students but also with faculty, staff and community members. His presentation connected with each audience in a way that challenged them to think in new ways about their own civic engagement. He was funny, accessible and extremely knowledgeable. His case studies provided specific examples of successful social movements, and he also offered statistics around broader trends in giving and engagement that helped us situate ourselves in a rapidly changing field of study. We had him for one day, but could have easily spent a week on the questions he raised. It was a pleasure hosting him.

    Elizabeth Lynn Institute for Leadership and Service and the Center for Civic Reflection, Valparaiso University
  • Derrick Feldmann’s  Social Movements for Good is a tremendously valuable resource for leaders who are looking to scale their organizations and causes. Derrick leverages his vast experience and research at Achieve to provide great insight about the possibilities and challenges of social movements. His thoughtful explanations, concrete examples, and sound advice offer important information for novice and experienced leaders of any size organization.

    Eric Weinheimer President & CEO, Forefront
  • A fascinating, practical “How-To” manual for creating, sustaining, and leading a Social Movement. Derrick Feldmann brings his extensive experience to bear in offering insights and guideposts essential to building movements that can truly make a difference in today’s world.

    General (Ret.) Stanley McChrystal
  • Throughout our history social movements have helped to break down barriers, challenge the status quo and drive people to action. In his new book, Social Movements for Good, Derrick Feldmann looks back at some of the most pivotal social movements of our time and addresses why some movements succeed at catalyzing change, while others fall short. Filled with insights, best practices and advice from leaders in the field, this book is the definitive playbook for modern day changemakers who want to champion the issues, organizations and causes they care about.

    Jean Case CEO of the Case Foundation
  • Derrick has unique insight into the interests and motivations of Millennials related to their volunteering and charitable giving.  His perspective is informed by in-depth research, detailed analysis and his own personal experience and wisdom.

    Kim Laughton President, Schwab Charitable
  • There is no other social influencer better positioned to offer a framework for how communities both far and near can unify under one emotion – under one cause — under one movement for good.  Derrick Feldman’s Social Movements for Good is a must read for any change maker — whether you’re an individual or represent a non-profit organization or company – there is something invaluable to be gained.  Get ready to be inspired by a collection of case studies that will reinvigorate how you build your own community of believers committed to something good.

    Nicole Robinson Senior Director of Community Involvement, Mondelez International & President of its Foundation
  • Social Movements for Good is a must-read for anyone interested in how social movements take shape, gain momentum, and catch people’s imagination. From viral social media surprises to movements grown from meticulous, deliberate cultivation, Feldmann uses both his extensive expertise and his rich network to explore, dissect, and explain what motivates people to respond to, participate in, and grow movements aimed at social good. While no book can provide a foolproof recipe for a movement’s success, this book includes all the ingredients.

    Peter Dudley Senior Vice President, Wells Fargo Government and Community Relations
  • As a developer of emerging leaders across the social purpose sector, I view Social Movements for Good as an instructive roadmap for understanding the practices and distinct elements that go into creating and maintaining sustainable social movements.  Mr. Feldmann’s revealing interviews with leaders from the different sectors supports his case for how a durable and resilient social movement can thrive and lift up its followers.  Add the overlay of how the influential millennial generation, a group Mr. Feldmann has studied extensively, supports social movements for good, it becomes quite apparent how these movement are becoming a more integral part of America’s growing for-purpose society. In addition to being a wonderful how-to book, Social Movements for Good provides the reader with inspiring antidotes that underscore the importance of social media and how it has revolutionized the way we organize change across sectors.

    Richard A. Brown Vice President, Philanthropy, American Express
  • Social Movements for Good takes the reader along a wonderful journey into “How” to build engaging social movements.  Derrick Feldmann through crisp commentary, shares the roles for people — donors, activists and promoters — to play in authentic movement building.  He also conveys key elements to sustain the movement: lead with the social issue and not the organization; apply empathy as a magnet for engagement, use technology as a tool, not the campaign and activate online and offline. Social Movements for Good is a GPS for those who want a hands on guide to change the world.

    Carol Cone CEO, Carol Cone ON PURPOSE

Cause for Change

With “Cause for Change,” Derrick Feldmann and Kari Dunn Saratovsky created a much-needed guide for causes to engage millennials (age 20-32) as constituents, volunteers, donors and employees. At the heart of this research-based book is the Millennial Engagement Platform, an action-based rubric that outlines how your organization must realign and reorganize to respond to this rapidly growing cohort. “Cause for Change”:


  • Examines how millennials communicate, volunteer, take action, influence their peers and choose to give their time and money.


  • Explains how millennials view their role in the workplace and how their ideas are already reshaping nonprofit culture from within.


  • Profiles millennials-turned-dynamic leaders who have created and managed movements.

Derrick Feldmann - Creative Mornings

Derrick Feldmann - United Way Centraide Canada

Derrick Feldmann - The Millennial Report

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