Top 25 Sustainability Speakers
- By Aaron Peterson
- Aug 02, 2023
The United Nations defines sustainability as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of the future.” It’s about learning how to make the most of reusing the resources we have now to avoid depleting them. If that’s the topic you want to address at your next event, meeting, or conference, our top 25 sustainability speakers are the experts you need.
Gary Oppenheimer is a World Food Prize nominee, Points of Light Winner, and is on the James Beard Foundation Food Waste Advisory Board member. He founded AmpleHarvest.org after realizing how much wasted food was being generated in both home and community gardens around the nation. He is an expert in hunger, food waste, and disruptive innovations.
The fastest-growing EV charging station installer and operator is a company chaired by Chris Goodall. ChargePoint Services has been focused on the best EV charging experience for more than a decade, and the company knows this is important as the world shifts from gas-powered vehicles to electric ones. They’ve delivered more than 172 million chargers and were the first provider to be ENERGY STAR certified. Chris knows a lot about the importance of EVs and how it will change the world.
Thomas Kostigen is an award-winning “National Geographic” writer and co-authored “Cool Food: How to Erase Your Carbon Footprint One Bite at a Time” with Robert Downey, Jr. He’s one of the world’s top sustainability experts who’s spoken to organizations like The Aspen Institute and The Climate Project.
Before even reaching her teen years, Sophia Kianna wanted to look at the stars in the night sky and realized she couldn’t. Pollution in her home country of Iran was so bad that the stars were not visible. When she talked to adults in her family about climate change, she learned none of them had any knowledge of global warming. In fact, 40% of the world’s adults have never heard of climate change and she set out to raise awareness and make these vital environmental issues known.
5. Andy Acho
Andy Acho was the Worldwide Director of Environmental Outreach and Strategy for Ford Motor Company. His sustainability methods saved Ford millions while helping the environment. He excels in finding ways to become more sustainable without spending money doing so.
6. Benji Backer
Benji Backer founded the American Conservation Coalition when he was at the University of Washington. Before any of that, he volunteered in his home state and even testified about climate change in Congress. He’s also on the American Academy of Arts & Sciences Climate Change Commission.
7. Ron Garan
Ron Garan works hard to use the carbon market to pay for humanitarian projects with his company Manna Energy Limited, a company that specializes in water purification in order to have a safer, cleaner world. Manna Energy was the first in the world to register a carbon credit program for water treatment with the United Nations Clean Development Mechanism.
8. Dan Buettner
Dan Buettner is an award-winning journalist and producer who is known for his work on the “Blue Zone Hotspots,” which are the five places in the world where people live the longest, healthiest lives. This led to the implementation of Blue Zone Projects to make changes to communities to improve the health and well-being of its community members.
9. Jim Davidson
The U.S. National Park Service has commended Jim Davidson twice for his volunteering on high-climate rescues. He’s an avid climber who’s tackled mountains in the U.S., Tibet, Nepal, Bolivia, Argentina, etc.
10. Kathy Varol
Kathy Varol is known for her help in creating holistic sustainability strategies for companies like Adidas. She’s behind the Brand Purpose Model that follows a four-step process to create “conscious capitalism.”
11. Ryan Hickman
Ryan Hickman is one of our youngest speakers, and he’s been a steward for recycling since the young age of three. He joined his dad at a local recycling center to trade in cans and bottles for cash. Recycling became his life goal. He collects bottles and cans from people he knows and many others and makes sure they go to a recycling center instead of the environment where they can reach the ocean and cause damage. All of this has brought him to the nonprofit organization he established, Project3R that focuses on environmental education and beach clean-up events.
12. Lucy Johnson
She’s the founder and CEO of Green Salon, the first sustainable lifestyle consultancy in the United Kingdom. Lucy Johnson’s specialty is in helping people give themselves and their homes a green makeover. Her 4C’s program embraces a greener life through conservation, circularity, certification, and curation. That program is a great topic to have her discuss sustainability.
13. Afdhel Aziz
Afdhel Aziz is the Chief Purpose Officer and Founder of Conspiracy of Love, a consultancy that shows Fortune 500 companies invest wisely in issues that help with sustainability like food insecurity. Among the companies he’s helped are Adidas, Mars, and Unilever.
14. Rania Hoteit
Rania Hoteit is the CEO and Founder of ID4A Technologies. She’s committed to helping businesses adopt sustainable practices through her Sustainable Development Goals, which not only helps create sustainable business practices, but it’s also helped almost two million workers enjoy healthier work environments by ending labor exploitation.
15. Andrew Revkin
Andrew Revkin is an esteemed journalist focused on environmental and human sustainability. He’s the Founding Director of Columbia Climate School’s Initiative on Communication and Sustainability. He brings more than 40 years of reporting on the environment and global warming to his engagements.
16. Cassie De Pecol
Cassie De Pecol is the Founder of Her International, Inc., a company that funds female-driven projects that address the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. She’s traveled to every country on her own and has seen first-hand the damage that’s being done to the environment.
17. Chris Dickerson
Chris Dickerson played outfield for several teams, including the New York Yankees, Baltimore Orioles, and Cleveland Indians. During this time, he saw the number of plastic cups being discarded at games and established Players for the Planet with Jack Cassel. They work to bring players together to raise awareness of the importance of e-waste, recycling, and clean-up efforts.
18. Kit DesLauriers
She’s built a name for herself as a professional skier and mountaineer. Kit DesLaurier is the first person to both climb and ski all Seven Summits. She’s also on the board of the Alaskan Wilderness League, working hard to preserve the Alaskan wilderness, and an advocate for POW (Protect Our Winters). POW is dedicated to helping protect the world’s wintry climate from climate change.
Jonathan Reckford is the CEO of Habitat for Humanity International, an organization that helps people trade sweat equity for affordable housing. The organization won the 2020 Golden Halo Award from Engage for Good.
20. Jeff Fromm
Jeff Fromm is the author of “The Purpose Advantage” and “The Purpose Advantage 2.0.” He’s helped companies find ways to increase innovation and come up with new marketing opportunities while also focusing on sustainability.
21. Morgan Simon
Morgan Simon is a holistic nutritionist and wellness expert. She specializes in whole-food lifestyles and the elimination of environmental toxins in a sustainable diet. Book her to talk about establishing a healthy work environment and workplace wellness.
22. Jeremy Casebeer
He’s known as “the Lorax'' due to his love of the environment. Jeremy Casebeer is a professional beach volleyball player using his insights in his podcast “Our Impact.” Through his podcast, he has partnerships with B Corp/1% for the Planet/Climate Neutral brands and ambassadorships with Parley for the Oceans and the Forest Stewardship Council.
23. Charlie Szoradi
Charlie Szoradi has three decades of experience in sustainability. He’s founded GREENandSAVE, Independence LED Lighting the Energy Intelligence Center, and Clean Solution Technologies. He’s highly focused on sustainable living and next-gen agriculture.
24. Margo Hayes
She’s the first woman to climb 5.1a. Margo Hayes is a talented gymnast who joined her father on climbs at the young age of 10. It runs in her blood as her grandfather led the first successful ascent of Kangshung Face. Climbing plays a part in her love and advocacy for the environment.
25. Stephen Ritz
He’s the author of “The Power of a Plant” and created the world’s first edible classroom. With his students’ help, Stephen Ritz has grown more than 165,000 pounds of vegetables in the South Bronx. He’s a 2021 Food Hero, among many other accolades, and is in the PBS series “Let’s Learn With Mister Ritz.”
All of our top 25 sustainability speakers excel in providing important facts and information in an engaging, memorable way. Once you’ve found your favorite, easily book that speaker online or reach out to learn more about a custom engagement.