Top Sustainability Leaders

Rebecca Rhodes

In honor of Women's History Month, we're rolling out a three part series to highlight the badass women who are leading the charge for sustainability. Whether they are spearheading innovations in sustainable fashion or mobilizing millions in climate strikes, these ladies top the charts.

The following list by no means captures all of the amazing women pushing for systemic change to combat the climate crisis, but is a snapshot to show that regardless of age or background, we can all do our part.


Stella McCartney Sustainable Fashion

Stella McCartney has been exploring sustainable and ethical fashion since she started her brand in 2001, at a time when it seemed like an eccentricity – or even a nuisance – to many in the industry.

Fast forward to today, her unwavering moral commitments have put her in an interesting position as an activist in the fashion business, leading the force to create the systemic change most needed in the industry.


Dame Jane Goodall | BUHO

Dame Jane Goodall is known for her exceptional research of chimpanzees in Tanzania. She lived in Gombe Stream Game Reserve from 1960-1975 with her family.

In 1977, she co-founded the Jane Goodall Institute to work with communities living near chimpanzees to launch alternative sustainable livelihood projects that improve their incomes and their capacity to take care of natural resources. She became a UN Messenger of Peace in 2002.


Eileen Fisher | BUHO

Eileen Fisher has always been a pioneer of sustainability in the clothing industry, having started her Renew collection more than 10 years ago and now working to be 100% sustainable this year.

She recently introduced a new zero-waste initiative called “Waste No More” is merging architects with designers and ethics with business, to bring more awareness to the massive environmental impact that the fashion industry continues to have on the planet.


Livia Firth | BUHO

Livia Firth is the founder of Green Carpet Challenge, a project that encourages celebrities to wear ethical designs at high profile events & catapults sustainable style into the spotlight.

She is a global ambassador for Oxfam, was awarded the UN Leader of Change award in 2012, and a women’s rights campaigner, launching The Circle — an advocacy group working to overcome poverty and empower women around the world — with Annie Lennox.


Emma Watson | BUHO

There is no better advocate for ethical & sustainable fashion than Emma Watson. Her activist sensibilities can be traced back to her teenage years when she first shone a spotlight on the destruction caused by the fashion industry in the early 2000s.

She was appointed as a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador in 2014, and that same year launched her UN Women campaign HeForShe.


Ellen MacArthur | BUHO

After Dame Ellen MacArthur's retirement from professional sailing in 2010, she launched the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, a charity focusing on a transition to a circular economy. Working in education, business and fashion, the foundation emerged as a thought leader to establish a circular economy on the international agenda.

She was awarded the Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2005 and appointed a Knight of the French Legion of Honour.


Great Thunberg | BUHO

Greta Thunberg began a global movement by skipping school. Starting in August 2018, she spent her days camped out in front of the Swedish Parliament and a movement quickly grew.

In the 16 months since, she has addressed heads of state at the U.N., met with the Pope, sparred with President Trump and inspired 4M people to join the global climate strike on September 20, 2019, in what was the largest climate demonstration in human history. She was named Time's Person of the Year in 2019.

“You say you love your children above all else, and yet you are stealing their future in front of their very eyes.”

Greta Thunberg