Leading the Way

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The finalists for our annual Responsible CEO of the Year Awards are an impressive group making strides in multiple sustainable areas.
By Belinda Sharr
Leading a company is no small task. To be a successful CEO is challenging, but to be a responsible CEO takes great dedication, commitment, and ambition. CR Magazine honors these types of leaders each year with its Responsible CEO of the Year awards. This year’s honorees have accomplished many great things, including launching an extensive STEM education initiative; meeting energy reduction targets; creating a student loan debt reduction plan for employees; operating many veteran programs to help military members; and commissioning a research project that quantified climate change risk.

The winners will be announced during the dinner and awards ceremony at the COMMIT! Forum on Oct. 19. Here, we take a look at all of the finalists (listed in alphabetical order), their contributions to their business, and why they deserve recognition for their responsible efforts.

Emanuel (Manny) Chirico

Chairman and CEO, PVH Corp.

For Manny Chirico, corporate responsibility is fundamental to the way he conducts business. Chirico makes CR issues a priority and embeds them into his every day decision-making, setting a tone that cascades throughout every level of the PVH organization and across the globe. By demonstrating strong leadership and encouraging his leaders to drive change, he is realizing the company’s vision to create positive impacts all the way from source to store.

In 2016, PVH deepened its engagement with the United Nations, signing the UN Global Compact and committing to the Women’s Empowerment Principles and the CEO Water Mandate.

In 2015, the company conducted more than 2,165 factory assessments and visited approximately 1,400 factories of their suppliers in order to share strategies with the goal of improving working conditions and employment practices.

Supporting the communities has always been a top priority for PVH, and Chirico personally. The company endeavors to have a positive impact on the lives of women and children.

In 2014, they expanded a decade-long partnership with Save the Children significantly and committed $5 million over five years in support of early childhood education programming through the PVH Foundation, our charitable giving arm. Chirico announced this partnership at the White House Summit on Early Education, indicating his commitment as a business leader to promote early childhood education. In 2015, Chirico joined Save the Children’s Board of Trustees to expand on PVH’s commitment and help the organization drive future strategy.

Under Chirico’s leadership, PVH was the first U.S. company to commit to the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh (“The Accord”) in 2013, and the Company continues to contribute to the Accord as a member and through the service of executives on the Accord’s Steering Committee.

John Crowe

President and CEO of Saint-Gobain and CertainTeed Corporations, Saint-Gobain

John Crowe leads the Saint-Gobain and CertainTeed North American teams at the new state-of-the-art Saint-Gobain and CertainTeed North American Headquarters located in Malvern, Pa. Although the move to a new building had been under consideration for a while, only Crowe had the right leadership qualities to put the plan into action when he became CEO in 2012.

Crowe wanted Saint-Gobain to reach its full potential by having a headquarters that served as a showcase for the company’s building materials. He chaired the Headquarters Steering Committee, created teams from cross-functioning groups and facilitated the collaborative efforts of working groups. Once he knew the Headquarters would achieve the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Gold certification, he pushed to achieve LEED Platinum certification, which the Headquarters was awarded in July 2016 for both commercial interiors and core and shell.

Crowe also led the Headquarters’ sustainability initiatives by ensuring approximately 79 percent of construction and demolition waste from the project was diverted from landfill disposal. He ensured the building materials utilized in the Headquarters met the highest sustainability initiatives, including the installation of CertainTeed solar panels on the roof which provides clean, renewable energy, reduce the Headquarters’ carbon dioxide footprint and will save the company approximately $100,000 in electricity bills over the next 25 years.

The sustainable building effort paid off with Saint-Gobain seeing a positive impact on employee performance.

Sury Kant

President North America, U.K., and Europe, lata Consultancy Services (TCS)

Sury Kant, president of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), is a supporter of STEM education and serves as an executive sponsor of the organization’s extensive STEM education initiatives.

Under Kant’s leadership, TCS is expanding access to computer science education with its role as a founding partner and the tech platform creator for multiple STEM mentoring programs including US2020 and Million Women Mentors. TCS also launched a STEM education and community engagement program, goiT, where employees teach coding, programming, and design as mentors to local youth. In 2015 alone, TCS staff provided 17,431 hours of hands-on learning to 1,621 middle and high schoolers. Seventy percent of goiT students reported an increased interest in STEM disciplines, and 94 percent considered a STEM career as a possibility.

TCS’s other CR programs have improved employee engagement and provided a measureable community impact. In fact, according to TCS, 17,136 employees participated in 621 volunteering events and contributed over 56,642 hours to support projects in STEM, education, health, and the environment. Results from the company’s annual employee survey, PULSE, demonstrate the impact of these initiatives: employee satisfaction scored 72 percent and employee engagement measured at 73 percent.

Mike Lawrie

Chairman, President, and CEO, CSC

Mike Lawrie was named chairman, president, and CEO of esc in 2012 and has since aligned the company’s CR initiatives with its business goals. The results are impressive: CSC surpassed its original 10 percent energy reduction target with a 14.6 overall decrease and global GHG emissions are down by 14.3 percent. The organization also achieved its target of zero waste to landfill for electronic waste.

Diversity is also important to Lawrie and CSC. In fiscal year 2016, esc received a 100 percent score in the Disability Equality Index (DEl) based on accessibility and community engagement and it was named a Leading Disability Employer by the National Organization on Disability.

Lawrie makes corporate responsibility a key part of CSC’s continued focus on business growth and performance excellence, and remains strongly committed to sustainability. And it shows. In 2014, esc achieved GRI status, and it is ranked No. 13 on CR Magazine’s 100 Best Corporate Citizens List 2016, up 22 spots from No. 35 in 2015.

Robert E. Moritz

Global Chairman, PricewaterhouseCoopers International Ltd (PwC)

In July, Robert E. Moritz began his role as Chairman of PricewaterhouseCoopers International for a four-year term. PwC is a network of professional services firms in 157 countries with more than 208,000 people.

Moritz has been with PwC for his entire career and has held a number of leadership roles. He was leader of the U.S. Assurance practice, a managing partner for the New York region, a senior partner and chairman for PwC U.S., and spent two terms as chairman of the Governing Board for the Center for Audit Quality.

As global chairman, Moritz leads the PwC network to ensure quality service to clients and strives to enhance the company’s brand and reputation, develop and retain key talent, and expand its capabilities across all areas of the business. Moritz’s goals and objectives include the continued creation of an optimal work environment; enhanced promotion of diversity and inclusion efforts; an emphasis on the value of purpose; and a continued focus on specific societal cause areas.

Moritz considers professional development and education as an important factor in how happy and engaged employees are at work, and he has provided them with opportunities to grow. During his tenure as the US firm leader, in 2015 PwC US introduced a Student Loan Paydown (SLP) Program to take steps to help solve the problem of outstanding student debt. Under the benefit, PwC US pays up to $10,000 towards student loan debt for eligible staff. As of May 2016, almost 6,000 staff members have taken advantage of the SLP program.

Moritz speaks widely on, and is a champion for, diversity and inclusion in the workforce as well as being an advocate for workplace flexibility. Under his leadership in the US, PwC’s flexible working offering provided:

• Working differently- working from home, a compressed work week, reduced hours or job sharing;

• Flex days- time can be taken as long as employees work four business days and a minimum of 40 hours;

• Time off- PwC offers 15 to 22 days per year for full-time staff, two floating holidays, and a firm-wide paid shutdown;

• Expanded parental leave- mothers and fathers may take the same amount of fully-paid parental leave for a new child; and

• Firm-wide sabbatical program – PwC staff can take an approved break from their daily routines to pursue a personal or professional interest, over a time period of 4 to 16 weeks.

Richard Noll

Chairman and CEO, HanesBrands

HanesBrands Chairman and CEO Richard A. Noll is committed to corporate responsibility at the company, particularity in maintaining environmental accountability. Under his leadership, HanesBrands established an environmental and energy management practice. In 2007, the company set five year long-term goals: to reduce energy use by 20 percent, water use by 10 percent, carbon and greenhouse gas emissions by 15 percent, and to have 30 percent of worldwide energy use come from renewable resources. These goals were met, and new rigorous goals were set for 2020.

Compared with baseline performance in 2007, HanesBrands strives to:

• Reduce energy consumption by 40 percent;

• Reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 40 percent;

• Reduce water use by 50 percent; and

• Secure at least 40 percent of its total energy from renewable sources by 2020.

HanesBrands is committed to the responsible management of energy, carbon emissions, water, wastewater, chemicals, solid waste, and recycled materials at all of its facilities worldwide. For example, Noll approved the building of a biomass plant in the Dominican Republic to supply steam for its fabric production facility. The twin-boiler facility uses a renewable energy supply and has reduced carbon emissions by approximately 31,000 metric tons. The company has also invested $6 million into building a modern water treatment plant in Central America to reduce its environmental impact.

One of Noll’s biggest initiatives was for HanesBrands to voluntarily submit its energy consumption, carbon emissions, and water use data each year to the Carbon Disclosure Project and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR program. Environmental initiatives set by Noll have earned HanesBrands the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Energy Star sustained excellence award for its global energy management efforts for seven consecutive years.

Christine Perich

CEO, New Belgium Brewing

New Belgium Brewing CEO Christine Perich has made sustainability a core business strategy for the company by working to close the loop on energy use. In fact, New Belgium now generates 15-18 percent of its own electricity onsite and diverts 99 percent of its waste away from landfills. The organization is using technology that is energy efficient-making more beer and using less water to do so.

In 2004, Perich started as chief financial officer, and in 2008 she became chief operating officer. In 2013, she was instrumental in transitioning New Belgium into a 100 percent employee-owned Employee Stock Ownership Plan. In 2015, she was promoted to the role of CEO and oversaw a conversion effort to make New Belgium’s plant more energy efficient. Perich decided it was worth sustaining initial costs in order to make the plant more sustainable, and to move toward greater energy efficiency for the future at the company.

She has grown the company as well. When she joined New Belgium in 2000, the company operated a 165,000 barrelage production facility and distributed its beers in seven states. As of 2015, when Perich became CEO, New Belgium produced more than 914,500 barrels and distributed its products in 45 states and also in Alberta, British Columbia, and Sweden.

Richard Shadyac Jr.

President and CEO, ALSAC, the fund raising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Richard Shadyac, president and CEO of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, believes a non-profit organization should, along with focusing on its own mission, focus on the outside community as well.

At ALSAC’s annual national training meeting in 2014, Shadyac challenged more than 1,200 ALSAC employees to become more actively involved in their communities. Many people throughout the organization began seeking out opportunities to help by tutoring children, holding drives for local food pantries, volunteering at soup kitchens, cleaning up neighborhoods, and gathering clothing for homeless shelters.

At the 2015 annual meeting, employees put together 1,000 toiletry bags for the homeless, stuffed 1,000 backpacks with school supplies for students, and spent 300 hours cutting out and creating packets of math and word cards for teachers’ daily use, all in the Memphis, Tenn. Area. ALSAC employees have also committed to building a future Habitat for Humanity home in the same region in late 2016.

Shadyac has led the organization to record-breaking achievements with strategic efforts that have increased fundraising revenue by nearly 70 percent since the start of his tenure in 2009.

David P. Steiner

President and CEO, Waste Management

Waste Management President and CEO David Steiner’s vision for the company focuses on how they “capture value” from the waste materials they manage from customers. Making waste itself less wasteful this allows everyone to win-the customers, the business, and the environment.

Steiner became president and CEO in 2004 after serving as general counsel officer and chief financial officer. He set out to transform Waste Management into a leading environmental solutions provider based on solid data and stakeholder and leadership team input. He aligned Waste Management internally and externally by developing a consultative approach within the company and by creating publicly-stated sustainability goals that assured stakeholders the company would be successful.

In 2007, Steiner collaborated with the company’s leaders to think about long-term sustainability goals for the company, and they have created new goals over time. Some of those long-term sustainability goals to meet by 2020 include:

• Processing more than 20 million tons of recycling;

• Increasing fleet efficiency by 15 percent and reducing emissions by 15 percent;

• Setting aside 25,000 acres for conservation and wildlife habitats; and

• Producing enough electricity to power more than two million homes through waste-based energy production.

In addition to using natural gas in its fleet, Waste Management has made its trucks more efficient by controlling emissions, using alternative fuels, and optimizing truck design. In 2009 and 2010, it was recognized as a U.S. EPA SmartWay Transport Partner.

According to Waste Management, educating consumers on how to recycle correctly is critical to ensuring that recycling is sustainable. Under Steiner’s leadership, the company allocated significant resources to its Recycle Often. Recycle Right (RORR) education effort: a research-based education program designed to address contamination and keep recycling viable for communities.

John R. Strangfeld

Chairman and CEO, Prudential Financial, Inc.

As a passionate advocate for veterans, Prudential Financial Chairman and CEO John Strangfeld recognized that Prudential plays a significant role in the lives of veterans and military families.

In 2010, Prudential established its office of veteran’s initiatives, with a mission to help solve the challenge of low veteran employment. The office’s programs focus on training, recruiting and hiring, employee engagement, philanthropic support, industry influence, and financial readiness. It includes on-the-job training, mentoring, and the creation of a model military-focused program. The company has also given more than $20 million in funding to organizations that provide needed services to military service members, their families, and veterans.

In partnership with Workforce Opportunity Services (WOS), Strangfeld and Prudential also created VETalent, a work-study program for veterans and military spouses that offers college classroom training, on-the-job professional training, and employment. VETa lent started with the first class at the company’s headquarters in Newark, N.J., in 2010. Since then, 16 other classes of Iraq/Afghanistan-era veterans have graduated from VETalent program around the country,

Another program called Prudential Military Veterans Network (VETNET) is a business resource group for Prudential employees who have a military background that offers networking and professional support and serves as a communications channel between Prudential and the veterans’ community.

The Prudential El Paso Business & Technology Services Center opened in 2014, due to the area having nearly 48,000 veterans, and being the home of Fort Bliss, one of the nation’s largest military installations. Prudential committed to hiring 300 new employees, including veterans and military spouses, for this center, and they already more than halfway to their hiring goal as of 2016.

Mark Wilson

Group Chief Executive Officer, Aviva

Aviva Group’s Chief Executive Officer Mark Wilson’s organizational vision for CR is to be a business that positively impacts the lives of its customers and society. One way he does this is by leading the company’s Strategic Response to Climate Change, a business strategy that ensures the company operates sustainably while managing and mitigating the risk of climate change.

Wilson is one of the first business leaders to clearly quantify the risk that climate change poses to financial assets globally. Aviva commissioned a research project from the Economist Intelligence Unit that estimated $13.8 trillion of global assets are at risk if global temperatures rise by an average of 6°C. The company believes the world needs a strong climate policy, and it took an active role in supporting policymakers who were negotiating a credible long-term greenhouse gas reduction goal. Wilson’s leadership and dedication to communicate the research conclusions meant that this message was heard by many different stakeholder groups, including senior policymakers.

In order to contribute to maintaining the climate, in September 2015 Aviva signed up with the Montreal Carbon Pledge. The company supported the need for greater transparency on carbon risk and the development of tools, like carbon foot-printing.

Aviva also invested in the lower carbon infrastructure-it announced an investment target of £500 million annually for the next five years in low-carbon infrastructure, as it recognizes that the transition requires a heavy capital investment. In 2015, Aviva signed £347 million of new investments in wind, solar, biomass, and energy efficiency. A report on the carbon savings will be released in 2017.

The company supports strong policy action on climate change, and it makes its own effort to educate others on the issue. At the COP21 conference, Aviva hosted two events that discussed how to stimulate private investment in the low-carbon economy, with the CEO of Aviva France and representatives from the UK Green Investment Bank, the New Climate Economy, and UNEP Inquiry. The company advises others on how to achieve climate-resilient business strategies, like participating in the IIGCC Corporate Programme, which Aviva itself chairs. In 2015, the company supported 90 percent of climate change-related shareholder resolutions, and it held 25 climate-specific engagements as well.

Posted October 12, 2016 in Awards