Presidio Graduate School Launches The Business of Sports & Sustainability

Presidio Graduate School is pleased to invite you to attend the inaugural course in The Business of Sports and Sustainability during the 2014 Fall academic semester.

Presidio Graduate School is pleased to invite you to attend the inaugural course in The Business of Sports and Sustainability during the 2014 Fall academic semester.

The program is designed for students focused on sports management, managers of sports and entertainment venues, and MBA students. Students will walk away with an enhanced ability to incorporate profitable, ecologically intelligent operations at leagues, teams and venues. During the course you will learn:

  • The business case for sustainability at sports (and entertainment) venues
  • How to identify high impact areas and make ecologically intelligent changes that are cost effective
  • How to interface with fans, local governments and other important stakeholders
  • How to attract and partner with sponsors who might help you realize your goals while simultaneously improving their relationship with your venue
  • How to encourage your suppliers to rely on a more sustainable supply chain
  • Tools to benefit your understanding of and effect on: waste, water, energy, cleaning chemicals and other physical aspects of stadium and event management
  • Sustainability reporting and interfacing with league greening programs
  • Fan engagement tactics
  • How to generate strategic sports operations plans that integrate sustainability criteria and
  • industrial ecology principles & tools


The curriculum will include case studies, concrete tools, and a collaborative learning environment where you will have the opportunity to interact with other team and league officials, stadium operators, vendor representatives, and sustainability professionals. Guest speakers will include:

  • Neil Boland, Vice President, Information Security and Special Projects, Office of the Commissioner, MLB

  • Martin Tull, Executive Director, Green Sports Alliance

  • Rob Watson, CEO and Chief Scientist, ECON Group

  • Christopher A. Bradlee, Biopolymers – Market Development Manager, BASF North America

  • John Waffenschmidt, V.P. Environmental Science & Community Affairs, Covanta Energy Corp.

  • Paul Gilman, Ph.D., Chief Sustainability Officer, Senior Vice President, Covanta Energy Corp.

  • Michael VanBrunt, P.E., Director, Sustainability, Covanta

  • Michael Totten, Founder and President, Assets for Life

  • Val Fishman, Director, Climate Business Group, Bonneville Environmental Foundation

  • Chris Walker, Climate Change and Sustainability Services, Ernst & Young

  • Jack Groh, Director, NFL Environmental Program

  • Omar Mitchell, Director, NHL Sustainability Program

  • Jami Leveen, Director of Marketing: Convention Centers, Aramark

  • Alice Henly, Senior Resource Specialist, NRDC

  • Darby Hoover, Senior Resource Specialist, NRDC

  • Syd Mandelbaum, Founder and CEO, Rock and Wrap It Up food donation organization

  • Jill Savery, Olympic Gold Medalist and Sustainability Director for the America’s Cup Race

  • Doug Behar, Senior Director of Ballpark Operations, Yankee Stadium

  • Robin Raj, Founder and CEO, CitizenGroup

  • John Marler, Senior Director, Energy and Environment, AEG

  • Becky Dale, Manager of Environmental Sustainability, AEG

  • Steve Ashkin, President, The Ashkin Group

  • Mike Lynch, Vice President, Green Innovation, NASCAR

  • Mary Anne Biddiscombe, Director of Customer Solutions & Consumer Education, Coca-Cola Recycling

  • Elizabeth Heider, Chief Sustainability Officer, Skanska USA and Former Chair of the USGBC

  • Tom Tingle, Sr. V.P. and National Director of Sports COE, Skanska

  • Chris Devolder, 360 Architects

The course is led by Dr. Allen Hershkowitz, a Senior Scientist and Director of the Sports Greening Project at the Natural Resources Defense Council. Dr. Hershkowitz helped launch the sports greening movement. He co-founded the Green Sports Alliance in 2009, serves on its Executive Committee of the Board, and is the principle environmental advisor to more leagues, teams, and venues than any person in the working field. Dr. Hershkowitz has been instrumental in pushing the US sports industry to a “tipping point” where all major league commissioners have now embraced the value of responsible environmental stewardship. Many of the leaders of that movement will be present to tell their stories and provide insight into how to make the biggest impacts.

The course is fully accredited and can be completed in one 5-month semester. For more information and to register please visit or contact Presidio Graduate School’s Director of Admissions Bethany Baugh via phone (415)-655-8976 or email

About Presidio Graduate School

Ranked the #1 MBA for sustainability, PGS educates and inspires a new generation of skilled, visionary and enterprising leaders to transform business and public policy and create a more just, prosperous and sustainable world. Through innovative MBA, MPA, Dual Degree and professional development programs in sustainable management, and a flexible, affordable hybrid residency model, Presidio activates students and professionals across a range of disciplines, industries and sectors to bridge the gap between commerce and the common good. Presidio has become the farm system for the sustainability field.

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