2023 — 4 speeches
Denis Moriarty is the founder and group managing director of Our Community.
Denis has a strong background in executive and change management in both the government and private sectors. He spent his early career as a bureaucrat tearing down pictures of Queen Elizabeth in government offices and pushing through government reforms and privatisation as a deputy secretary and commissioner.
His inspiration for starting Our Community came through his involvement with not-for-profit boards, which led to a realisation that technology and knowledge could be democratised to accelerate social sector reform. This thinking was crystallised during his 18-month participation in the Vincent Fairfax Ethics in Leadership Awards, run through the Ethics Centre.
In 2001 Denis was awarded the Centenary Medal in recognition of his establishment of Our Community, and in 2020 he was awarded a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his significant service to the community, to social welfare, and to public administration.
He describes himself as a social capitalist, and he believes markets, wealth and giving can be revolutionary when they are combined with a progressive social agenda. The biggest philanthropists in the world, he says, exist primarily through their business acumen.
Denis believes Australians and their governments need to be constantly reminded that while we delight in and promote the value of "communities", they are more than just an abstract notion, and it's the 600,000 community organisations in Australia that are the true catalysers of communities. That's why the mission of Our Community is to build stronger communities through stronger community organisations.