Wilkes University

Gary Hirshburg - Allan P. Kirby Lecture Series - Spring 2011

Gary Hirshberg

Tuesday, March 22, 2011 - 7:30 P.M.

Topic: “Win-Win: Why 'Good For All' will Save the Planet”
Location: Dorothy Dickson Darte Center for the Performing Arts

About Gary Hirshberg


President and CEO of Stonyfield Farm and Chairman of Climate Counts, Gary Hirshberg has been a leader in the environmental sustainability movement for more than 30 years. From his early days as an educator and activist to his current position, Hirshberg has been making the case for a future that is green and renewable for a better world. 

An expert on sustainability who does sustainability, Hirshberg has overseen the growth of Stonyfield Farm from its infancy as a seven-cow organic farming school in 1983 to the largest manufacturer of organic yogurt in the world. This growth has been built with innovative marketing techniques that often combine the social, environmental and financial missions of the company.  The green practices he has advocated and followed for decades include measuring and reducing an organization's carbon footprint, cutting down on trash and packaging, and converting waste to energy.

Fast Company magazine named him one of the top ten "most inspiring people in sustainable food," and he was profiled in the Oscar-nominated documentary, "Food, Inc."

Recipient of the Global Green USA’s Green Cross Millennium Award for Corporate Environmental Leadership, Hirshberg serves on several corporate and non-profit boards, including Peak Organic Brewing and Applegate Farms.  His penchant for action is reflected in his work with Climate Counts, which unites consumers and companies in the fight against global climate change. 

In his book, Stirring It Up: How to Make Money and Save the World, Hirshberg demonstrates how companies can make< sustainable investments while also improving the bottom line. Included are case studies of other businesses — companies such as Timberland, Patagonia, Interface and Wal-Mart — that have increased profits by reducing their environmental impact.  He also shows how all of us can use the power of conscious consumption to encourage green corporate behavior. "When you shop, you're really voting for the kind of world you want," says Hirshberg. "We should use that power for good."

On topics ranging from green business and corporate social responsibility to the organic industry and eco-friendly farming, Hirshberg is known for his optimistic outlook and empowering message:  "We can regain control of our environnmental and economic destiny with new ways of thinking. Running a green business is not just an ethically and environmentally responsible activity; it is the basis for economic growth in the 21st century."