The Sustainable Apparel Coalition is the apparel, footwear, and textile industry’s leading alliance for sustainable production.
Global Head of Sustainability, C&A
Kate Heiny is the Head of Global Sustainability for C&A, a 175-year-old, family-owned fashion retailer with stores in Brazil, China, Europe and Mexico.
Previously, she led sustainability for Target Corporation, a Fortune 50 company with more than 1,700 stores in 49 states in the US, which included operational innovation, public policy and business integration. She was ranked #73 on ETHISPHERE Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in Business Ethics in 2010. Prior to Target, she was a consultant with environmental consulting firms on the east coast. She earned her B.A. in Environmental Studies and M.S. in Environmental Science from Tulane University and her M.B.A. from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia.
Director, Hirdaramani Industries
Nikhil Hirdaramani is a Director of the Hirdaramani Group which is a 4th generation family business. The group’s Headquarters are in Sri Lanka and its main business interest is the manufacture of apparel in its 28 facilities spread across Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Vietnam. The group has in recent years diversified into other sectors such as Hospitality, Sustainable Power and Retail.
Hirdaramani has been in the business for over 15 years and has been involved in marketing and supply chain, developing and managing relationships with many customers and suppliers from such markets as Europe, USA, India and Japan. In recent years Hirdaramani has taken a leading role in the group’s sustainability initiative, which has become a key aspect of the overall group’s strategy. Mihila, one of its newer facilities in Sri Lanka is the 1st ever carbon neutral facility in Asia. Many of the other facilities are LEED Certified and it is the aim of the board to have the entire group carbon neutral by 2020.
Hirdaramani is a strong advocate in sustainability specifically from the angle of the supplier. He has been the chairperson at the Sri Lanka Sustainability Forum, which is part of the annual Sri Lanka Design Festival, bringing together stakeholders from across the supply chain to discuss current issues. Hirdaramani has previously served as a director on the board of the American Chamber of Commerce Sri Lanka and currently serves on the Sri Lanka advisory committee for the British Asian Trust in the UK as well as a Trustee of the Harrow School Development Trust. Hirdaramani has a BA in International Relations from Tufts University in the USA and a MBA from Imperial College, London UK. Hirdaramani presently serves on the Nominations Committee for SAC.
Vice President, Global Supply Chain and Responsible Sourcing VF Corporation
Sean Cady is Vice President, Global Supply Chain and Responsible Sourcing at VF Corporation, a global leader in branded lifestyle apparel, footwear and accessories. VF had 2015 revenues of $12.4 billion and is owner of iconic brands, including The North Face®, Vans®, Timberland®, Wrangler® and Lee®.
Under Cady’s leadership, VF’s Global Responsible Sourcing function – which is part of VF’s Global Supply Chain organization – leads product stewardship initiatives for all VF products, creates supply chain sustainability improvements across the entire supply chain, and accelerates factory social and environmental leadership. He manages teams that partner with each VF supplier to drive continuous improvement and leadership on life safety, social and environmental performance.
Cady is also responsible for VF’s environmental sustainability strategy and results for products, and the global supply chain. He leads the implementation of programs to continuously improve sustainability performance in four key areas of sustainability: water, energy, chemicals and cotton.
VF’s product stewardship team, which is managed by Cady, ensures best-in-class management of product and environmental impacts through design and manufacturing due diligence, regulatory compliance and government relations, reduction of product environmental impacts, and management of VF’s Restricted Substance List (RSL) and innovative CHEM-IQSM program. Additionally, Cady leads VF’s trade strategy and engagement, representing VF’s interests to eliminate barriers to free trade.
Cady holds an M.B.A. in International Business and a B.S. in Chemical Engineering, and he is a licensed Professional Engineer in the State of California. He also serves on the Board of Directors for the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety.
Chief Sustainability Officer, Aditya Birla Group
Tony Henshaw is a UK Chartered Electrical Engineer who spent his early working life building and commissioning subway trains in South Korea, Portugal and for the London Underground. He received my MBA from the Manchester Business School in 1988, graduating with a Distinction.
After introducing Japanese management techniques into three different manufacturing companies, saving two from closure, he left manufacturing for a new life in Bolivia where he joined Transredes – Bolivia’s oil and gas pipeline company and a Shell joint venture, as Vice President of Corporate Planning and Analysis. In 2000, Transredes suffered a 29,000 barrel oil spill on the high altiplano and after 8 months as Incident Commander in charge of the clean up and the compensation of 126 indigenous communities, he returned to head office and created the Vice Presidency of Health, Safety, Environment and Social Affairs with a mandate to improve the company’s performance in these areas. Transredes became the first company in Bolivia to have an integrated Business Management System certified to ISO 9001, 14001 and OSHAS 18001 in 2003.
Appointed Vice President of Sustainability for CEMEX SA in 2007, he was instrumental in developing a sustainability model and strategy whilst improving stakeholder engagement through new NGO partnerships based around the company’s Conservation Book programme and the management of the 500,000 acre EL Carmen Transboundary Park which spans the border between the USA and Mexico.
Henshaw joined FTSE 100 mining company Vedanta Resources plc as Chief Sustainability Officer in November 2010 where he implemented his Sustainable Business Model and led the company’s sustainability programme. He created the Vedanta Sustainability Framework of Policies and Standards that is leading to improved operational performance and a growing reputation as a leading company operating to the recognized international performance standards set by the International Finance Corporation.
In April 2013, Henshaw joined the Aditya Birla Group, a premium global conglomerate with revenues of $42 billion and 120,000 employees in 34 countries (www.adityabirla.com) to help the group formalize and integrate the principles and standards required to develop and enhance their sustainable businesses. His team of subject matter experts has developed the ABG Sustainability Framework of Policies, Technical and Management Standards plus Guidance notes and Training Courses aligned to the International Standards of IFC, OECD, UNGC, ISO, OHSAS and GRI to support the development of good governance structures and practical roadmaps to help the Group’s businesses survive and thrive in our changing world and in doing so achieve the Aditya Birla 2017 Sustainability Vision, “By 2017, the Aditya Birla Group endeavours to become the leading Indian conglomerate for sustainable business practices across its global operations.” Henshaw also sits on the WBCSD India Advisory Panel and the GRI India Advisory Board.
Vice President, Institutional Strategy & Development, World Resources Institute
As Vice President for Institutional Strategy and Development at the World Resources Institute, Elizabeth Cook works with WRI’s board and staff to scale up the organization’s priority initiatives. This includes expanding external partnerships critical to WRI’s financial and programmatic success. Cook has played a leadership role in growing WRI’s budget from $20 million in 2005 to over $70 million today.
A staff member since 1994, Cook has held several diverse positions within the institute. Prior to her current role, she directed WRI’s Markets and Enterprise Program, which harnesses the power of business to create profitable solutions to environment and development challenges. Before that, she led WRI’s interdisciplinary Climate Protection Initiative, which worked in partnership with companies to identify policies and business strategies for achieving strong climate goals. Cook has over twenty-five years of experience working with industry on innovative responses to environmental issues. She has advised numerous Fortune 500 companies on how to strengthen corporate commitments to the environment, including GE, Nike, Wal-Mart, DuPont, Johnson & Johnson, Alcoa, Shell, and Caesars Entertainment. She serves on the board of Future Harvest: Chesapeake Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture and the Sustainable Apparel Coalition.
In September 2007, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awarded Cook its “Best of the Best Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award” in recognition of the most exceptional global contributions in the first two decades of the Montreal Protocol.
President, Sai-Tex International
Sanjeev Bahl is an entrepreneur who has ventured into diverse businesses including Apparel, IT and Healthcare. Bahl is the President of Saitex, a state-of-the-art denim manufacturer in Vietnam that incorporates sustainability into product design and development from the beginning.
Bahl is also the founder of SAI-Digital, a fast growing Digital Product and Services organization. Giving back to the community and making a difference to humanity have been of great importance in life and business. Bahl’s future initiatives include bringing manufacturing back to the West.
Head of Sustainability-Production at H&M
Pascal Brun has more than 15 years of experience in the apparel and textile industry within multinational corporations such as H&M and Camaieu, with experience spanning across execution and strategic management roles. After having worked in Europe, China and Bangladesh, across a variety of roles such as country manager, and global supply chain manager, he is now responsible for leading and managing H&M’s Global Sustainability for Production and is currently based in Hong Kong.
Brun’s expertise lies in his experience from integrating key business performance indicators with those of sustainability. Under his leadership, H&M has achieved and implemented several key sustainable initiatives. Formerly, he sat on the Board of International Cotton Association and Better Cotton Initiatives as the brands representatives for the industry. Currently, in addition to sitting on the board of the SAC, he is also a board member of the Organic Cotton Accelerator and ZDHC Roadmap to Zero.
General Manager - Corporate Quality & Sustainability, Crystal Group
Catherine Chiu has been supporting Crystal Group in starting the sustainability journey since 2007, and as the Head of Corporate Quality and Sustainability Department for over 10 years. Chiu is responsible for working with the Group Chairman, CEO and Executive Director in formulating the Crystal Group’s sustainability strategy – covering 5 line companies and over 20 factories globally. Catherine is also Chair of the Environment and Social Compliance Working Committee, under the Corporate Sustainability Steering Committee chaired by the CEO.
Chief Content Officer, Danish Fashion Institute
Since 2011, Jonas Eder-Hansen has been the development director of Danish Fashion Institute. Eder-Hansen works on local, regional and global levels with responsibility for the pan-Nordic NICE project and Copenhagen Fashion Summit – the world’s biggest event on sustainable fashion.
Since 2002, Eder-Hansen has worked with sustainability within research and education. In 2005, Jonas became the Research Director at the Center for Corporate Social Responsibility at Copenhagen Business School, where he became a leading force for the establishment and development of the now-internationally-renowned research centre.
Eder-Hansen has a master’s degree from Copenhagen Business School.
Senior Director of Sustainable Innovation, Gap Inc.
Melissa Fifield is senior director of sustainable innovation for Gap Inc., a leading specialty retailer which includes Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime, and Athleta brands. In this role, Fifield leads a global team that drives the integration of more socially and environmentally sustainable business practices across the enterprise.
Fifield has been with Gap Inc. for eleven years, leading efforts to strengthen the company’s sustainability programs. She is responsible for developing and driving the achievement of environmental impact reduction goals focused on water, energy and waste in retail operations and supply chain, as well as the development of brand and product sustainability strategies. She has also led communications efforts in support of the company’s ethical sourcing and environmental sustainability initiatives.
Prior to joining Gap Inc., Fifield was part of the Public Affairs practice at Burson-Marsteller, a global communications firm, and served as a legislative aide to U.S. Representative Lois Capps in both Santa Barbara, CA and Washington, D.C.
Vice Chairman, Sustainable Fashion Business Consortium (SFBC)
Anderson Lee is the Business Director of the Hong Kong Non-Woven Group; Business Director of Hong Kong Bonding Fabric Co. Ltd; CEO of Pinneco Research Limited; Vice Chairman of the Sustainable Fashion Business Consortium (SFBC); Executive Committee Member/Director of the Hong Kong Intimate Apparel Industries’ Association (HKIAIA); Convenor in the Fashion Industry Development Committee of the HKSAR Legislative Council (FIDC); General Committee Member of The Textile Council (TC), A Board Member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition(SAC); Sustainability Working Group Voting Member of the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA); Compliance Committee of the Global Apparel, Footwear and Textiles Industry (GAFTI); steering member of the Global Recycle Standard; speaker at CCBF’s and China Water Risk’s 2°C+ Water and Prime Source Forum; and international judge of EcoChic Design Awards 2012 and 2013.
Head of Communications, Brand Engagement, and Country Programs
Tara Rangarajan is a Global Operations Manager for Better Work, based in the International Labour Office (ILO) in Geneva. In her role, she is part of Better Work’s Senior Management Team and oversees the Better Work programs in Haiti, Indonesia, Nicaragua, and Vietnam. She is also responsible for working with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and for coordinating Better Work’s factory level services. Prior to her role on the global team, Rangarajan started and led the Better Work Vietnam program for five years.
She came to the ILO after 10 years of working on corporate social responsibility at Business for Social Responsibility (BSR). She has worked extensively on international labour standards issues with the apparel, electronics, automotive and agriculture sectors around the world. Her focus has been on improving working conditions through facilitating dialogue between international companies, local enterprises, unions, governments and civil society representatives. Rangarajan also worked as a journalist, covering international development in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the United States. She has a master’s degree in international economic and political development from Columbia University and a B.A. from the University of Michigan.
Vice President of Public Engagement, Patagonia
Rick Ridgeway is Patagonia’s Vice President of Environmental Affairs where he oversees the company’s philanthropy and chairs an internal council of the company’s vice-presidents and C-Suite executives that advise corporate sustainability. In this role, he and the council guide Patagonia’s vanguard environmental and sustainability initiatives such as Worn Wear and the Footprint Chronicles.Ridgeway was co-founder and founding chair of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. In addition to business, Ridgeway is recognized as a mountaineer and adventurer, making the first American ascent of K2. He has produced and directed several documentary films, written dozens of magazine articles and six books. National Geographic honored him with its “Lifetime Achievement in Adventure” award. Ridgeway lives with his wife in Ojai, California, and they have three grown children.
Vice President, Global Corporate Sustainability at Unifi Manufacturing, Inc. (makers of REPREVE®)
Helen Sahi is Vice President, Global Corporate Sustainability of Unifi, Inc., where she leads, develops, and drives the sustainability strategy and execution for Unifi, and integrates sustainability into the everyday fabric of the company’s business. She ensures Unifi’s sustainability strategy and practices are aligned with the company’s business objectives, and that all sustainability efforts are evaluated through a robust set of metrics. Helen has nearly three decades of experience helping companies such as Avery Dennison Corporation and Bank of America set and achieve their sustainability strategies and goals. Throughout her career, she has built effective partnerships with external organizations and NGOs to support and advance their sustainability efforts.