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CSB Staff

Click each name below to get to know our CSB staff members. 

 

 


Tensie Whelan, Director

Tensie  Tensie Whelan (NYU ‘80) is the Director of NYU Stern School of Business’s Center for Sustainable Business, where she is bringing her 25 years of experience working on local, national and international environmental and sustainability issues to engage businesses in proactive and innovative mainstreaming of sustainability. As President of the Rainforest Alliance, she built the organization from a $4.5 million to $50 million budget, transforming the engagement of business with sustainability, recruiting 5,000 companies in more than 60 countries to work with Rainforest Alliance.  She built the Rainforest Alliance frog into an internationally recognized and credible brand.  Her previous work included serving as Executive Director of the New York League of Conservation Voters, Vice President of the National Audubon Society, Managing Editor of Ambio, a journal of the Swedish Academy of Sciences, and a journalist in Latin America.  Tensie has been recognized by Ethisphere as one of the 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics, was the Citi Fellow in Leadership and Ethics at NYU Stern in 2015 and has served on numerous nonprofit boards and corporate advisory boards such as the Unilever Sustainable Sourcing Advisory Board and the Nespresso Innovation Fund Advisory Board. She was most recently appointed as a member of the Board of Directors for GlobeScan. Tensie holds a B.A. from New York University, an M.A from American University, and is a graduate of the Harvard Business School Owner President Management (OPM) Program.

Tensie Whelan has been featured in the following publications for her work with the Center for Sustainable Business:
The Pragmatist, Worth Magazine
A Better World Through Better Business, Stern Business Magazine
The Comprehensive Business Case for Sustainability, Harvard Business Review

Kevin Eckerle, Director of Corporate Research and Engagement

kevin
Kevin Eckerle is the Director of Corporate Research and Engagement at the Center for Sustainable Business, New York University (NYU) Stern School of Business, where he draws upon his more than 12 years’ experience working with private and public organizations to develop and implement transformational strategies that leverage sustainability as a driver of value creation. Prior to NYU, Kevin was a sustainability strategist with Accenture Strategy and Esty Environmental Partners (now part of PricewaterhouseCoopers), working with corporate, government and non-profit clients to embed sustainability. Prior to his consulting career, Kevin served in the U.S. Senate as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, where he oversaw several of the nation’s largest scientific agencies, including NASA, NOAA and the National Science Foundation. He began his career as a biologist, studying the unending variety of ornaments, dances and songs that birds use to dazzle their mates. Kevin is a frequent speaker on sustainability and the circular economy, and is the author or co-author of 10+ publications on the circular economy, engaging consumers to promote sustainable decision-making and grow business value, the economics of coal-generated electricity, the impacts of climate change on global biodiversity, and the ecology of birds. He earned his Ph.D. from Illinois State University and MBA from The George Washington University School of Business.

Sophie Rifkin, Senior Associate Director

Sophie
Sophie Waskow Rifkin is the Senior Associate Director of the Center for Sustainable Business. She has 10 years of experience working with organizations to grow and implement sustainability programs. As a member of the advisory services team at BSR (Business for Social Responsibility), Sophie worked with consumer sector companies to develop and implement sustainability strategies. Previously, she spent three years as a project manager at the George Washington University where she helped launch the university’s inaugural sustainability program. Sophie began her career in sustainability at the consulting firm, SustainAbility. She holds an MPA from George Washington University, and an A.B. in English from Brown University. Sophie is a member of the Pembroke Center Associates Council of Brown University and serves as a mentor in Brown Women’s Launch Pad program.