Advocacy & Impact Investing
Mary Ann is a board member, donor, and investor in innovative technologies and solutions for education, conservation, and equitable business.
Beyster Foundation for Enterprise Development
In 2005, Mary Ann became President of the Foundation for Enterprise Development, which was created in 1986 by her late father, Bob Beyster. The foundation supports research, education, and initiatives that advance innovation, entrepreneurship and broad-based employee ownership. Mary Ann has received awards for exceptional impact in employee ownership, and recognitions for start-up/small business innovation. Research, libraries, and education programs include the Beyster Institute and the J.R. Beyster Special Collection at UCSD, the Rutgers’ Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing, the Curriculum Library for Employee Ownership, the Beyster Professorship, Fellows & Symposium) , Entrepreneurial Ownership (Video Sets) by UMICH, Employee Participation and Ownership Scholarly Research Award at Academy of Management, & Best Paper Prize for Journal of Participation and Employee Ownership. Community-based entrepreneurial programs include Platform Cooperatives through the Start.Coop accelerator, and Cooperative/Social Enterprise development and technical assistance through The Industrial Commons , San Diego Food Systems Alliance’s Equitable Food Systems and Local Food Economy Lab, and regional Community Development Financial Institutions.
Mary Ann is Trustee of Beyster Family Foundations in support of health and human services, education, and art & culture, primarily in the San Diego region. She is also an active board member and initiative sponsor at leading academic and non-profits in climate and sustainability, public education, and performing arts.
Medallion Member, Board Member
Emeritus CA Board Member
Producer Club, Hall of Fame
Sustainability Sponsor; Former Board Member
Founder, Sustainability Scholarships
Innovation Competitions and Acceleration
Mary Ann is a founding sponsor of Start.Coop, UCSD’s Entrepreneur Challenge, StartR, Veteran Ventures, and the 2021 launch of StartBlue. She has been an advisor to entrepreneurial teams at UCSD, and a judge for two major social innovation competitions-JMK Innovation Fund and MacArthur Foundation’s 100&Change.
Impact investing extends Mary Ann’s philanthropy and community involvement. She invests in bond and equity funds that directly support companies focused on improving the long-term health of the environment and communities (including forms of worker and community wealth building.)
Her research in this field includes a published report in 2016 titled, Impact Investing and Employee Ownership: Making employee-owned enterprises part of the income inequality solution. Read more here.
Member of EnVest, an investor membership organization in support of investment opportunities across range of environmental themes.