Founder & CEO
Koann is the Founder and CEO of Sustainable Life Media and Sustainable Brands whose involvement with the intersection of environmental and human issues in business dates back to the mid-1980s when she launched international conferences on improving log utilization, reducing Waste Paper, and eliminating ozone-layer destroying chemicals (CFCs). Throughout her career she has been engaged in testing the connection between purpose driven leadership and competitive bottom line performance. As a result, her teams have consistently outperformed peers in both growth and profitability. Since 2003, she has devoted her full attention to the emerging field of social and environmental sustainability, launching Sustainable Life Media in 2004. She has helped various media entrepreneurs and NGO’s including Sierra Club and Greenbiz.com establish their own paths to effectiveness and economic sustainability. In 2005, she produced the First International Conference on Cradle to Cradle Design in Practice with Bill McDonough, Michael Braungart, Peter Senge and others. In 2006, she launched what has now become Sustainablebrands.com and in 2007, the widely respected Sustainable Brands Conference. The Sustainable Brands community has grown dramatically each year, and has become the premier international community of sustainable business innovators, with engaged community members represented from all continents.
Prior to founding Sustainable Life Media, KoAnn founded Organizations That Work a management consultancy focused on her passion for helping companies deliver breakthrough financial performance through purpose-driven leadership and improved organizational alignment and learning. Prior to that she served as Sr. VP of Miller/CMP Media, a division of United Business Media, where she launched and built a $50 million multinational division focused on serving various emerging technology markets including the Computer Game Development market and others. While there, she launched several product brands, spearheaded a corporate rebranding initiative, and brought systems thinking and organizational learning principles to the executive management team of the company.
KoAnn has attended graduate level programs in business management and sustainability at Cornell and Wharton, and currently sits on the Advisory board at the Center for Sustainability at Pennsylvania State University. She regularly speaks to corporate, academic and professional audiences about sustainability as the basis of a new renaissance of business innovation and value, as well as the role brands must play and the steps they must take to survive and thrive by leading the way to a flourishing future. She lives with her husband Steve on the San Francisco Peninsula and is most proud of her two sons, Josh and Jake, who are pursuing their individual passions for music, physics and philosophy.