Brad’s goal is to build knowledge and cooperation among sustainability advocates. His vision is to effect change in the way that business is conducted.
Brad is the Founder and President of the Toronto Sustainability Speaker Series (TSSS). Now in its 8th year, TSSS is widely recognized as Canada’s premiere forum for dialogue and problem solving among sustainability professionals. Each year over 1000 sustainability change agents attend TSSS events to exchange ideas and delve into trends, risks and opportunities that are presented by our shifting business model. Brad is often considered to be a “tribal” leader in the sustainability movement; he is a connector of people and ideas. Brad has a Masters in Environmental Studies from York University in Toronto and regularly writes and speaks on the topic of corporate sustainability.
At a recent TSSS event (Feb. 5, 2015) we explored the disconnect between Bay/Wall St. and Sustainability (click for written event summary). Please enjoy the highlights in this short video captured as part of the Partners in Project Green, ask the expert series.
I think the opportunity lies with the long term stakeholders like pension funds that have more patience in seeing the benefits of integrating ESG factors in their analysis.
— Ian McPherson, Last Spike Capital
We need the big guys (who are the early adopters, like PUMA, Unilever, and Patagonia) to start sending signals of the new ways of running the economy and the world.
— Bob Willard
There will be a day when financial statements will be continuous – companies must do a better job of telling their story.
— Julie Desjardins
Connecting the two world is challenging because investors are often looking at different, more short term factors, compared to the sustainability community that is often looking at issues that are much longer term.
— Martin Grosskopf, Vice President and Portfolio Manager, Director of Sustainable Investing at AGF
Welcome to the TSSS Series on Canada’s Top 30 Under 30. Learn about who and what inspires them and their vision for a more sustainable world. Each week two new profiles will be shared – take a moment and get to know the next generation of Canadian Sustainabilty Leaders. Thank-you to Kruger Products for supporting this initiative.
Cindy Chao, Sustainability Consultant, Deloitte
TSSS: Why does the sustainability sector resonates with you. Where/when did your passion begin?
Cindy Chao: Ever since I was young, I always wanted to effect large-scale positive change in the world. I always thought that I would do so by becoming a doctor – but as I reflected on my undergraduate studies, I realized that a doctor is often reacting to an illness, and that fields such as research, public health and epidemiology would be better career paths if I wanted to contribute to proactive betterment of global health. I didn’t feel that I had a personality fit to these fields and since I always had an interest in environmental issues, I turned my attention to becoming a “doctor of the Earth”. When I graduated, I weighed my options between starting off in the public, non-profit and private sectors. I concluded that the private sector needed the most support “from within” and that the career path would likely be accelerated compared to the other options. Further, my undergraduate education criticized capitalism without ever offering a solution. Given the reality of the system we live in and the current lack of a better system, I felt strongly about moving from academically criticizing the private sector to actively working with them to find practical solutions to minimize environmental and social impacts during the interim.
“Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where once there was only despair.
— Nelson Mandela
Ann Duffy, Naki Osutei and Zenia Wadhwani speaking about Sport and Sustainability 100 days before the Toronto 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games at TSSS on April 1, 2015
On April 1st, 2015, at the offices of Loyalty One in Toronto, the 100-day countdown to the 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games was marked by an engaging discussion about sustainability and social engagement in the context of the Games.
While Mandela’s words were spoken in the context of sport being, “more powerful than government in breaking down racial barriers”, his words ring true beyond that context. Sport’s ability to inspire and unite makes it an ideal springboard for addressing some of the greatest challenges of our time (including climate change, economic disparity and social injustice) that plague our countries and communities.