Katie Wallace - CSR Program Manager at New Belgium Brewing Company

Katie Wallace - CSR Program Manager at New Belgium Brewing Company

Katie Wallace, CSR Program Manager at New Belgium Brewing Company, joins Sustainable Nation to discuss:

  • The history of sustainability leadership at New Belgium Brewing

  • The importance of life cycle assessment and materiality assessments

  • The benefits of being a 100% employee-owned company

  • Advice and insights to other sustainability leaders. 

Katie's Final Five Question responses:

What is one piece of advice you would give other sustainability professionals that might help them in their careers?

Stay informed and be bold. This is not a time to be shy about taking actions. Follow the passion because we need a lot of focused action right now and I would say ask for help. So many of us are kind of making it up as we're going along, and being vulnerable and opening up and asking for help is not a bad thing.

What are you most excited about right now in the world of sustainability?

Just to pick one that's tough. I think emerging feminine leadership, and I don't mean that just for women, but I mean feminine attributes and collective inclusive practices for both men and women. It's really exciting and I think that's changing the way that businesses run. Also, a lot of cool carbon capture technologies and other great innovations happening in this space.

What is one book you would recommend sustainability professionals read?

I would say Jonathan Haidt's book The Righteous Mind: Why good people are divided by politics and religion, because sustainability unfortunately has become politicized and can still be divisive, and I really think that's one of the failures of the movement thus far. And so I think that Jonathan Haidt’s book The Righteous Mind provides a lot of insight into why we think differently and how we can come together, because unifying around this issue is really the one thing that will help us be successful.

What are some of your favorite resources or tools that help you in the work that you do? Could be websites, associations, technologies, software programs, any type of tools that help you in your work.

Well, looking forward, I'm going to say the Sustainable Nation Podcast, but for us, I think the B Corp assessment is just a really nice way to organize it. And it's free for anyone to use, you don't have to go through the formal certification to start, although we've seen a lot of market benefits and recruitment benefits to that certification. But it's a free tool out there, measures the impact you're having on coworkers, community and the environment. And I think it provides an excellent roadmap for moving in the right direction. And then of course, like sticking with the science and contextually based schools, I think science-based targets. It's an interesting model that's emerging right now that a lot of businesses like ours are starting to follow those protocols.

And finally, where can our listeners, go to learn more about you and your work?

Well, crack open a beer, go get yourself a Fat Tire, Voodoo Ranger, or Sour Saison is my favorite right now. I also missed the most important part that if it's not fun, it's not sustainable. And so, we have to remember to take time to enjoy all these things we're working hard to protect. So, www.newbelgium.com, has a lot of information and it will continue to have more around our social and environmental efforts. Personally, my profile on LinkedIn has some interesting information about rituals and belonging in the workplace and how we unify around this movement from the ground up.