- Behavioral and Policy Sciences
Malia Lazu is a Lecturer in the Technological Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Strategic Management Group at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
She has sparked deep economic development and investment in urban entrepreneurship for over twenty years. In her current role as EVP, chief experience and culture officer, and regional president at Berkshire Bank, Malia works to generate wealth for communities by expanding access to capital and spurring economic growth —especially in communities of color that have traditionally been left behind.
In her first nine months at Berkshire, Malia evolved the $13 billion bank’s strategic focus beyond traditional community banking services to prioritize tangible community impact. She has helped to diversify the board of directors; developed a suite of financial products and programs that support entrepreneurs of color; and launched ReevX Labs, a collaborative workspace and innovation hub for the urban start-up community.
A serial entrepreneur in her own right, Malia has launched and led a number of socially responsible business accelerators across Boston. She worked with the city to create Accelerate Boston which helped launch over twenty minority businesses in its first five years, and continues to help minority entrepreneurs raise capital. She was also the founder and president of the Future Boston Alliance, now known as Epicenter, which built an ecosystem of creators, consumers and investors to develop businesses in the creative industries. As a fellow at MIT’s Community Innovator’s Lab , she launched The Urban Labs, a multicultural agency helping brands see returns on diversity.
Malia began her career as a political organizer and bridge-builder founding Mass VOTE, a state-wide voter engagement campaign. She has led culture-shifting campaigns for the actor and civil rights activist Harry Belafonte, as well as businessmen and philanthropists like Peter Lewis and George Soros.
Malia currently sits on the boards of the Boston Chamber of Commerce, Massachusetts Business Roundtable, Revolutionary Spaces, and the Nation Magazine Editorial Board. She was named one of Essence Magazine’s 50 founders to watch in 2017 and Boston Business Journal’s Women Who Mean Business in 2019.
● Community Banking for High Potential Emerging Markets
● Innovation, Start-Ups and Urban Development
● Entrepreneurship and Economic Democracy
● Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
● Social Impact and Civic Participation
CONTACT: Danielle Moodie-Mills, (202) 445-5210
Ideas Made to Matter Three mayors on building more equitable cities
Mayors of Boston, Chicago, and San Francisco discuss efforts to foster equity in housing, income, and city contracts.
Apr 26, 2021
MIT Sloan Experts ‘How Corporate America Can Advance Social Justice and Racial Equity’
MIT Sloan Lecturer Malia Lazu will discuss the role and responsibility of business to accelerate equity and inclusion in the wake of the historic protests following George Floyd’s murder.
Mar 18, 2021
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