Gil Friend, systems ecologist and business strategist, is widely considered one of the founders of the sustainable business movement, and is noted for inspiring, challenging and supporting business, policy and investment leaders to rethink business in the light of the climate change and sustainability challenges. His commitment: to build prosperity and strategic advantage by managing through the lens of deep purpose and the guidance of 3.8 billion years of open source R&D—not just quarterly returns.
Greenbiz.com chairman Joel Makower describes Mr. Friend as “one of the most thoughtful and creative thinkers I know in the area of sustainable business, who artfully bridges the scientific and technical sides of sustainability, the realities of the daily world of business and people, and the systems in which they operate.”
Mr. Friend is founder and CEO of Natural Logic Inc, a strategy boutique advising the world's leading companies on building “massive value” through business-integrated sustainability strategies. Clients have included Coca-Cola, eBay, General Mills, HP, Landsbankinn, Levis, Odwalla, Steelcase, Sunpower, and many others. He is founder and chair of a new impact investment firm, applying Natural Logic's decades of experience to financial markets. He is founder and CEO of Critical Path Capital, a family of funds designed to accelerate the sustainable business revolution. He has just completed a secondment as the first Chief Sustainability Officer of the City of Palo Alto (California), where he led the development of the most aggressive municipal sustainability and climate plan in the US.
Mr. Friend is an inaugural member (along with Interface CEO Ray Anderson, energy guru Amory Lovins and Natural Step founder Karl-Henrik Robert) of the Sustainability Hall of Fame, and was named “one of the 10 most influential sustainability voices in America” by The Guardian and one of the Bay Area's “top 25 movers and shakers” in CleanTech. He is author of the acclaimed FT Press book, The Truth About Green Business, and more than 100 articles on business strategy and sustainability policy.