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Director of Executive Education for Sustainability, Harvard University's Center for Health and the Global Environment, Harvard University
Leith Sharp is the Director of Executive Education for Sustainability with
Harvard University’s Center for Health and the Global Environment (CHGE).
She is catalyzing a new collaboration to scale up executive education for
sustainability across all sectors, working in partnership with Harvard
University (through the CHGE), the USGBC, the Sustainable Futures Leadership
Academy and others.
Leith has spent 20 years working to drive sustainability into the core
business of the higher education sector, beginning her career by establishing
one of world’s first campus sustainability programs at the University of
New South Wales, Australia (Australia's 2nd largest university at the time).
For her innovative work in Australia, Leith received numerous awards
including a Churchill Fellowship and Young Australian of the Year
In 1999, Harvard University recruited Leith to be the founding director of
Harvard’s Office for Sustainability. Over the course of nine years under
her leadership, Harvard came to have the largest green campus organization in
the world, including a $12 million green revolving loan fund, over 80
certified green buildings, a green residence program, an aggressive greenhouse gas reduction program, substantial renewable energy purchases and much more. By her eight year, Harvard was at the top of the green schools rankings published by the Princeton Review, the Sierra Club and the Sustainable Endowments Institute. For her work at Harvard, Leith received numerous awards from the EPA, the City of Cambridge and the Boston Society ofArchitects.
In 2009 Leith was recruited to be the start-up Executive Director for the
Illinois Green Economy Network (IGEN), a partnership of 48 community college
Presidents working together to drive green economic growth across Illinois.
Working with the Presidents, Leith assisted IGEN in defining it's vision,
securing over $25 million of Federal, State and Utility funding and growing
its team from 5 staff to 20. all within 15 months.
In 2010 she was recruited by the Salzburg Global Seminar to be the founding
Chair of the Sustainability Futures Leadership Academy, an international
collaboration to advance executive leadership for sustainability in the
higher education sector. In this role she completed an extensive research
project that documented the change leadership capabilities of 197 successful
change leaders in the Higher Education sector.
Widely valued as a thought leader regarding sustainability and organizational
change, Leith has consulted with over 100 universities and other
organizations around the world including the U.S. House of Representatives
House Chief Administrative Office, The USA Association of Governing Boards,
The Ministry for Science, Denmark, and the World Student Environment Summit.
She has taught change leadership for sustainability at Harvard University for
the last 12 years, earning numerous commendations for distinguished teaching
Leith has a bachelor of environmental engineering from the University of New South Wales and a Master of Education (human development and psychology) from Harvard University.