Chief Environment Officer
Since 2008, Karen Clarke-Whistler has been the Chief Environment Officer of TD Bank Group (TD). In this role, Karen is responsible for developing TD’s environmental strategy, which has enabled it to differentiate itself by embedding an environmental perspective throughout the bank’s business operations. This approach has been key to TD’s rise to the top of the league tables for environmental performance in the North American banking sector.
In recognizing that environmental quality is a fundamental driver of economic success, Karen is able to provide a unique perspective to the business world – that is driven by opportunity over risk.
Under Karen’s leadership TD became the first North American-based bank to be carbon neutral. Learnings from this program were leveraged to implement initiatives aimed at reducing energy use in TD’s facilities and business operations, financing products and investments – last year TD became the first Canadian financial institution to issue a green bond.
Karen also led the development and launch of TD Forests, which works to help protect critical North American forest habitat, grow urban forests and green spaces, and promote the responsible use of forest products.
Karen’s open door policy with environmental groups has promoted dialogue on and solutions to many challenging issues and offers a refreshing change to traditional and more confrontational approaches.
Karen is an environmental scientist who is widely recognized as a thought leader in environmental business matters. Prior to joining TD, she spent more than 15 years working as an environmental consultant to a diverse base of clients in North and South America, Europe and Africa.
Karen’s was recognized as one of the 2012 Clean50 (50 individuals honoured for their outstanding contribution to clean capitalism) and as one of the 2014 Clean16 (national leader in their sectors drawn from the Clean50). She advises or serves on the boards of directors of a number of groups, including the Boreal Leadership Council, the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation, Sustainability CoLab, and Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE).
Karen holds a master’s degree in land resource science from Canada’s University of Guelph and a bachelor’s degree in ecology from the University of Toronto. Karen lives in Toronto.
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