THE BLOG

Ed Norton's Crowdrise Brings Fundraising (and Fun) to the Masses

12/07/2012 12:22 pm ET | Updated Feb 04, 2013

The serial philanthropist's project is helping people raise tons of money for their causes, while keeping the attitude light and funny.

In October, and before an audience of 800 Chicago Ideas Week attendees, Ed Norton announced, "My name is Edward, and I'm a philanthropy addict." He's not kidding: The two-time Academy Award nominated actor also serves on the boards of President Obama's Committee for the Arts and Humanities, Enterprise Community Partners, Maasai Wilderness Conservation Trust, the Signature Theater Company, the Friends of the High Line and the Conservation Lands Foundation. And he's not an in-name-only kind of Board member -- he really gets in there and works. When he's not indulging his philanthropy issues, he writes, produces, directs and runs marathons, but most recently, he's launched a crazy popular grassroots, peer-to-peer crowd funding platform, called Crowdrise. It's a platform to allow anyone to fundraise for a cause, and it does it with a laid-back and funny attitude that undermines the self-seriousness of a lot of philanthropy. It's also raised a ridiculous amount of money and cultivated a new generation of young activists who manage not to take themselves too seriously in the process.