Sad news; an outstanding leader in corporate sustainability has passed away.
Ray C. Anderson, a leading green business advocate and founder of Interface, one of the world’s largest carpet manufacturers, died this week. He’d spent the last 17 years promoting the benefits of sustainable business practices, not only for protecting the environment but for boosting the bottom line.
Besides transforming his own business, Mr. Anderson went on to influence corporate giants like Wal-Mart. He served on the President’s Council on Sustainable Development during the Clinton administration. And he established the Anderson-Interface Chair in Natural Systems at Georgia Tech, his alma mater.
In addition to these impressive accomplishments, Anderson wrote an influential book, Mid-Course Correction: Toward a Sustainable Enterprise: The Interface Model, which tells "the personal story of Ray Anderson's realization that businesses need to embrace principles of sustainability, and of his efforts, often frustrating, to apply these principles within a billion dollar corporation that is still measured by the standard scorecards of the business world." According to the New York Times, the book "is now required reading in every green M.B.A. program."
Clearly, Ray C. Anderson made a major, positive difference in his life. We should all strive to emulate his example.
P.S. You can watch Ray C. Anderson's TED talk, on "the business logic of sustainability," here.