Help Your Family Business by Helping Others

Help Your Family Business by Helping Others
Category: Interviews
Published: October 25, 2023
Updated: November 15, 2023
Views: 4107
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When Katie Rucker was asked to lead a $15 million fundraiser for a local Ronald McDonald House, her twin sister Jenny Dinnen at first worried about running the family business without her co-leader.  The twins are co-owners of MacKenzie Corp., a California-based technology and marketing firm founded by their father. 

However, as Katie dove into her fundraising effort, Jenny saw that it improved her twin's leadership skills, raised the company's profile, and generated much good will in the community. "I was always the sales and marketing person, and Katie operated behind the scenes in operations," Jenny said. "Now she's a person who says 'yes' and she's inspiring all of us. It has changed how we feel about philanthropy as a family and a business."

Both twins also saw that they needed to depart from their parents' approach to philanthropy, which was to give quietly and anonymously. They've learned that being able to amplify a message and get others to give was ultimately more important than writing a big check. Today MacKenzie's employees are following Katie's lead and volunteering more themselves.

In this interview with's Kimberly Eddleston, the twins share their insights about how visible philanthropy roles help develop stronger family business leaders.

Kimberly Eddleston
Kimberly Eddleston
Schulze Distinguished Professor of Entrepreneurship / D'Amore-McKim School of Business / Northeastern University
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Cite this Article
DOI: 10.32617/987-65395f35d7892
Eddleston, Kimberly. "Help Your Family Business by Helping Others." 25 Oct. 2023. Web 15 Jul. 2024 <>.
Eddleston, K. (2023, October 25). Help your family business by helping others. Retrieved July 15, 2024, from