Growth Advisers & Investors Ltd
Phillip Bruner is a serial entrepreneur and founder of several Edinburgh-based business initiatives to accelerate green investment and innovation. As a Director of Green Angel Investors Ltd. (GAIL), he assists startups from informatics, energy, waste and water sectors. He is a guest lecturer in global political economy at the University of Edinburgh and blogs for the Oxford Research Group’s SustainableSecurity.org.
Donna is Chief Business Officer at GlobalGiving, where she is responsible for the development of corporate and other strategic partnerships. She gets to spend her days doing what she loves – working with companies to help them contribute positively to communities around the world. Donna also serves on the Boards of GlobalGiving UK, Women’s Funding Network, Water for People. She previously was on the Boards of the Washington Area Women’s Foundation (three years as Chair) and Business for Social Responsibility. In a prior life, Donna was a senior executive of Fannie Mae having, over a dozen years, led business units as varied as strategic planning, international consulting, marketing, product development, and customer technology. She holds a B.S. in Managerial Economics from UC Davis, but is most proud of her high school basketball team’s CCS championship in 1980.
Shaun is an experienced and transformative leader with a track record of creating organisational and client value through positioning businesses to take advantage of market and strategic opportunities. A proven business manager with excellent client relationship management and communication skills Shaun continually champions organisational capacity building and development. An outstanding communicator and public speaker, Shaun has been a leading practitioner across business, the community sector and academia over many years. The majority of his career has been spent working with Executive teams and operating at Board level to establish, implement and oversee effective organisational operating policies and practices.
His professional interests span philanthropy, corporate social responsibility, human rights, higher education and industrial relations. Shaun has extensive experience working with high net worth clients to develop and implement effective philanthropic investment and funding strategies.
Sharon is chairman of Aladdin Ventures Worldwide Ltd which is her personal brand supporting her role as an ethical and social entrepreneur with 15 years experience of investing in a global context across the sectors of lifescience, envirotech and community based projects.
She is a member of the BBAA and has contacts in the VC and PE industry across Europe. Her background as a high net worth enables her to understand the requirements for capital raising and puts her in an excellent position to bridge the funding gap between projects and suitable investors.
Mac Macartney is a social entrepreneur, an international speaker on leadership and sustainability, a coach and an author. In all aspects of his work he seeks to inspire people to step forward and contribute towards the emergence of a just, sustainable, and peaceful world. He is the founder of Embercombe – a land-based social enterprise located in the southwest of the UK.
He has been a faculty member for IMD Business School/WWF ‘One Planet Leaders’ Programme in Lausanne for three years, and regularly contributes to the Exeter University Business School ‘One Planet Leaders’ MBA programme. Mac has co-facilitated leadership, values, and sustainability workshops with INSEAD Business School (Singapore), Lafarge, P&G (Europe), PepsiCo, and Nokia Siemens Networks amongst others. Recent and forthcoming speaking engagements include the Harvard Business School Club of New York, the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (South Africa), the International Academy for Collaborative Professionals (Vancouver), and the EC Retail Forum for Sustainability (Brussels). He has also spoken at three TEDx events.
For twenty years Mac was mentored by a group of Native Americans. This prolonged and challenging training has profoundly influenced Mac’s worldview and continues to inform all aspects of his work with organisations, children, families, and youth.
Passionate about building bridges of understanding and empowering others to make a positive difference in the world, Sharon is the founder of the Global Girls Project – a collaborative leadership development initiative focused on women and girls’ empowerment. She also serves as a consultant on strategic economic, community and sustainable development initiatives, previously representing the City of Charlotte at the 2012 U.S.-China Energy Efficiency Forum, while working in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy and Brookhaven National Lab on the U.S.-China Eco Cities initiative.
A consummate bridge-builder, Sharon’s expertise includes strategic planning, leadership development and advocacy – engaging, educating and aligning stakeholders across multiple sectors in support of key development initiatives ranging from workforce development and global literacy to clean energy and gender equity programs.
She holds a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Florida State University and a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Stephen F. Austin State University, and currently serves on the North Carolina State Leaders Network for the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, a broad-based coalition of leaders committed to educating the American public and policymakers on the importance U.S. civilian-led tools of diplomacy and development, and advocating for increases to the International Affairs Budget to support these programs.
I have worked in sustainability for more than 20 years, including in senior positions in international organisations in the role of strategic partnerships and business development.
I have designed and delivered programmes for corporate clients to help them develop skills and understanding for engaging with complex challenges relating to sustainable and responsible business practice. I have worked with leadership teams struggling to make sense of what ‘sustainability leadership looks like’, including through experiential field-based activities.
My own view is that sustainability is a narrative that is always changing and therefore where an organization finds itself at any given time is subject to a large number of internal and external drivers that are also shifting. I’m particularly interested in how organizations surface the tensions that exist between strongly held but abstract ‘values’ and external expectations around environmental / social impacts.
I don’t consider myself a content expert with respect to a specific aspect of environmental sustainability, I prefer to take an approach that enables the organisations I work with to ‘reframe’ and view challenges systemically.
I have significant experience of working with different sectors, recent engagements have included:
• Review of sustainability reporting guidelines for the oil and gas sector – I was asked to do this work as part of stakeholder panel for IPIECA (this is the global oil and gas association for environmental issues).
• Working with major UK retailers and tea-buyers to address social and environmental issues facing Kenyan Tea producers within their supply chains, a focus on energy has led to development of a catalytic intervention with potential for significant impact at scale.
• Design and implementation of field-based challenge as part of employee engagement programme for large, US based family owned business (working specifically with global drinks division) using an experiential approach to link core business with key sustainability challenges and origin community benefits.
• Development and management of large-scale sustainability leadership programme for major banks, focused on building competencies of diverse teams to build a values-led, high performance culture.
I work as a consultant with partners and clients from different sectors, I am an associate of Talik and Company and find this collaboration to be useful as it allows me to draw on a wider skill set of colleagues.
Although I describe myself as working in ‘sustainability’ for more than 20 years, I increasingly find this term unhelpful and tend to focus my work around questions of purpose and impact applied within a systemic context.
Prof. David Rivkin, PhD
Prof. David Rivkin, PhD is currently the Managing Director and Dean of the College of Science and Technology at the Sustainable Methods Institute, and is the acting Vice-President of California Paramount University. He holds dual bachelors degrees in Chemistry and Nuclear Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. Prof. Rivkin went on to pursue post-graduate studies for a Doctorate in BioPhysics at the University of California and later completed a PhD in Business Sciences at the European School of Business at Regents College with a focus on Small Business Sustainability.
He has 30 years of professional experience in both industry and academia. He has previously taught at internationally renowned colleges and universities in Europe, the USA and Israel, including teaching online to students in India and China, and teaching globally for the Sustainable Methods Institute where he was a founder, the Managing Director and Dean of the College of Science and Technology. In 2013 Prof. Rivkin was appointed to the Fulbright Specialist Roster, where he works with educational institutions around the globe. In 2010 Prof. Rivkin was nominated to be a Fulbright Scholar. He is also an IEEE Senior Member and Distinguished Lecturer, a NSF Principal Advisor in Clean Technologies, a Certified Program Manager, a Certified Corporate Sustainability Expert, and a Certified Green Energy Professional.
Prof. Rivkin has authored 6 textbooks on Wind Power published by Jones and Bartlett, and has 2 chapters in the series “Renewable Energy Handbook” published by Springer. He is the winner of numerous technical and managerial awards and recognized by governments for his outstanding contributions. As a serial entrepreneur of several successful ventures including founder and Chief of Technology for SciEssence Intl. Prof. Rivkins multidisciplinary background, from biosciences to nanotechnology from health to energy, provides a broad background in Sustainability. He now consults to educational institutions, governments and businesses around the world on Sustainability and Renewable Energy technologies as well as BioTechnology.
Robbie is a director of BlackRock Smaller Companies Trust plc, Metallon Corporation Ltd, Lowland Investment Company plc, The Education Fellowship, and Chairman of S and JD Robertson Group. He was previously chairman of West China Cement, and of Project Trust, and a director of Buro Happold Engineers and several other quoted and private companies. He was Chief Executive of Tarmac Group and Anglo American’s Industrial Minerals division. His early career was in finance, working in London, Paris, Johannesburg, New York and Rio de Janeiro. His experience is both long and broad, living and working on four continents and doing business on the others.
In his executive roles, Robbie was involved in growing businesses in culturally diverse environments and managing change. In his subsequent career he has continued to focus on opportunities, which were interesting in geography, culture and business challenge, relishing situations where managing growth and change come to the fore. These include the Chairmanship of an extremely fast growing and successful Chinese Cement company and his present interest in Zimbabwean gold mining. His sector knowedge is broad but his main focusses have been on areas related to the construction and mining industries, paper, fertilisers, the charitable sector and the investment world.
Alexandra works with family businesses globally, supporting and advising on generational transitions and governance issues. She helps families define their goals, establish structures, processes and relationships helping them achieve success. Highly skilled at addressing the complex relationship and business challenges faced by entrepreneurial families, Alex’s qualifications include a degree in Philosophy, a qualified Chartered Accountant and a Masters in Organisational and Social Psychology.
Kim Sutton is the Chief Executive Officer at Gold Coast Hospital Foundation. Kim studied Psychology before moving to the USA and the UK where she gained a wealth of leadership experience in the social care and charitable sectors. She has held senior management roles in prominent charities such as Oxfam Australia and Action for Children, UK. Kim has a passion for leadership, mentoring and strategy in the not-for-profit sector and is currently undertaking the global CFRE fundraising accreditation.
Dr Mathias Terheggen
Dr. Mathias Terheggen is a global expert on corporate and private philanthropy. His work addresses social and environmental challenges at a tactical and strategic level by supporting for- and non-profit stakeholders including wealthy individuals and families, family offices, foundations and NGOs, social enterprises and for-profit corporations around the globe in their search for positive impact through innovative, best-practice philanthropy and socially and environmentally sustainable business and investment practices.
A physicist by education he build his professional focus on social sector topics during his work at McKinsey & Company and through his position as Global Head Philanthropy Services at UBS.
Today, he heads the Quanah Empathy Foundation Singapore, a private foundation dedicated to the development of empathy in children and youth. He also serves several social enterprises and non-profit organizations as advisor, board member and active shareholder and regularly publishes and speaks on various aspects of philanthropy.