Speaker Series

CESB/Net Impact 2014 Speaker Series

2012 Class Speakers

On May 8, 2012, Deanna Robinson of Gap Inc. and Geoff Stafford from Levi Strauss spoke to Professor Susan Cholette’s undergraduate decision sciences class at SF State. The presentation discussed the sustainable supply chain efforts that both Gap and Levi’s are making in the apparel industry. Read more about the presentation and speakers.

On April 25, 2012, Ayuba Gufwan, head of the nonprofit Wheelchairs for Nigeria, gave a talk to Professor Denise Kleinrichert’s sustainability and business opportunity class at the SF State Downtown Campus. To learn more, see Wheelchairs for Nigeria – Giving the Disabled a New Livelihood

2012 CESB Speaker Series

E-waste recycling and sustainability in the IT industry

Wed., Feb. 22, 3:45 to 4:45 p.m., DTC 609

James Kao, CEO & President, and Founder of GreenCitizen

James Kao, CEO & President, and Founder of GreenCitizen


James Kao founded GreenCitizen after working in the hi-tech industry when he became concerned about the lack of responsibility surrounding the electronic waste streams the industry creates.

After two years of traveling the world to learn about the global dumping of electronics and the solutions for proper reuse and recycling, GreenCitizen was born.

Prior to founding GreenCitizen, James was an experienced CEO with a successful track record of delivering results in startup and Fortune 500 environments. Over the course of his career, James has raised over $24 million of funding to support several start-up companies.

In 2000, he co-founded Managize, a supply chain management company later sold to Escalate, Inc. Prior to Managize, Mr. Kao founded and led eALITY, a business process enterprise software firm.

He served as CEO of The Right Sizing Group, a data warehouse consultancy, whose clients included Wells Fargo Bank, Charles Schwab, Intuit, Mervyns’ and Transamerica Corp. James also played a key marketing role in significantly driving Oracle sales for the HP product business, and also held management positions with HP and IBM.

Mr. Kao holds a BS in math/computer science from UCLA and an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

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Supply Chain Sustainability and Marketing Challenges of Bay Area Business

Wed., Mar. 7, 6 to 7 p.m., DTC 597

Jeff Weinberger, DS3 Founder

Jeff Weinberger, DS3 Founder

DS3 founder Jeff Weinberger discovered his passion in helping organizations identify and develop critical, yet often overlooked, strategic opportunities, from industry-leading companies like Cisco (WebEx), Intel, SAP, Sun Microsystems, Ernst & Young and BellSouth (now AT&T), to many smaller companies.

He is a recognized thought-leader, speaker, writer and blogger on sustainability, disruptive marketing and Web 2.0/Enterprise 2.0 technology issues. Jeff is also involved with various nonprofit organizations, including E2, NRDC and MENG; he co-founded the University of Chicago GSB Tech/Venture Network.

He holds a BA degree in computer science and economics from Columbia University and an MBA in marketing and strategy from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business.

DS3 Consulting

DS3 Consulting helps companies identify sustainable business opportunities, drive innovation, and create competitive advantage in the marketplace. DS3 Consulting creates sustainability and marketing strategies to help companies achieve measurable results and competitive advantage by identifying the real business opportunities that lie in sustainable and responsible practices, incorporating them into the core business plans, and implementing successful tactical programs.

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Fair Working Conditions in Global Supply Chains

Wed., Mar. 28, 6–7 p.m., DTC 597

Kohl S. Gill, Ph.D., President and Founder of LaborVoices, Inc.

Kohl S. Gill, President and Founder of LaborVoices, Inc.

Kohl S. Gill is the president and founder of LaborVoices, Inc., a start-up company providing information services to global workers and supply-chain managers. Kohl served as an AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow for the U.S. Departments of Energy and State, most recently as the South Asia and Middle East Labor Affairs Officer for the Office of International Labor and Corporate Social Responsibility in the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor.

Prior to federal service, Kohl was an Indicorps Fellow in the slum areas of Delhi, India, serving as a volunteer paralegal with local residents, using transparency legislation to fight both petty and grand corruption at the local level.

Kohl is a graduate of the California Institute of Technology and received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara, for his work in quantum computing and semiconductor physics.

LaborVoices, Inc

LaborVoices is an award-winning supply-chain management and anti-trafficking start-up company—a Yelp.com for workers. It is created by workers for workers, building reputations of employers entirely via voice and text messaging. LaborVoices markets intelligence products gleaned from workers to brand and supply-chain managers; and helps brands detect emerging labor risks, choose better suppliers, attract and keep the best workers, and keeps workers out of abusive situations. The LaborVoices model is currently in progress in Bangalore, India. Visit http://laborvoices.com for more information.

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Marriott’s Corporate Culture of Employee Inclusion and the Peer Workplace Issues Resolution Process

Wed., Apr. 11, 5–6:15 p.m., DTC 597

Matt Parsons, Sr. Human Resources Manager for Workplace Environment, Marriott International, Inc.

Matt Parsons, Sr. Human Resources Manager for Workplace Environment, Marriott International, Inc.

Matt Parsons has over 12 years of human resources experience. He leads Marriott’s effort to improve associate relations through proactive planning and development of management talent within the company’s Western and Northwestern regions as well as by investigating issues and ensuring legal and policy compliance.

Matt was previously the regional HR manager for Home Depot, Inc.’s New Concept Development stores experimenting in fundamental change with operations, retail store footprint, and customer service models.

At Intel Corporation, he was the architect of the Technology and Manufacturing Engineering College focused on the organizational development side of human resources.

Matt started his career as a teacher where the core concepts of turning events into teachable moments took hold. This dedication to developing others has carried forward throughout his career.

He most recently earned his senior professional in human resources (SPHR) from the Society for HR Management. He earned his MBA from Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School Of Business. His his first masters, an M.Ed., also earned from ASU, focused on technology and instructional design.

Marriott International, Inc.

Marriott is an international lodging company, with more than 3,500 properties and a broad portfolio of brands in the industry, including JW Marriott Hotels & Resorts, Ritz-Carlton, Fairfield Inn, Marriott ExecuStay, and Marriott Vacation Club International, to name a few. In the 80 years since its inception and 50 years since opening its first hotel, Marriott has strived for a strong collaborative relationship with its owners and franchisees. Marriott is a publicly held company listed on the NYSE, Marriott International, Inc. (MAR).

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