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International Women’s Day was first started in 1911 and has since grown to become a global day celebrating the “social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.” At the Erb Institute, our mission is to create a social and environmentally sustainable world through the power of business. We are proud to recognize and applaud the efforts of so many women in our network and beyond that are living out this mission, achieving positive impact across industries and creating a better, more sustainable world for future generations.

It is our hope that as the business sustainability community continues to adopt objectives related to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), this list of women will continue to grow and diversify, year after year.

Erb Institute Faculty and Postdoctoral Fellows

Sara Soderstrom: Bringing awareness and a voice to gender issues in higher education.

Erb Core Faculty member Sara Soderstrom hosted a panel at the Academy of Management providing a space for women in academia to share their stories and experiences, creating a true sense of community, camaraderie and a network of support.

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Uyanga Turmunkh: Assessing the unequal judgement of women’s failings in business

Former Erb Institute Postdoctoral Fellow, Uyanga Turmunkh’s research sought to answer the question, “In business, do we—women included—somehow judge miscalculations, errors in decision-making, ethical transgressions and the like more harshly when the culprit is a woman?”

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Caitlin Drummond, Lauren Lutzke: Fake news and simple interventions

Current Erb Institute Postdoctoral Fellow, Caitlin Drummond, and U-M SEAS master’s student, Lauren Lutzke, shared research conducted with Erb Faculty Director, Joe Árvai, addressing interventions to mitigate the spreading of fake news on Facebook.

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Erb Institute Students and Alumni

Kara Davidson, Stephanie Judd: Helping people live meaningful, purposeful lives

Erb Institute 2013 alums Kara and Stephanie started Wolf & Heron together to empower organizations and individuals to lead with purpose. They help inspire their clients through their delivery of interactive and innovative professional development programs and consulting services designed to help meet organizational objectives.

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Kelsea Ballantyne: Systems thinking and operations leadership

Erb Institute 2016 alum and Erb Institute External Advisory Board member, Kelsea Ballantyne, puts her dual-degree education to use in the executive development program at Boeing, working on the 777 and 777x airplanes.

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Ivy Wei: DEI leadership in environmentalism

In November of 2018, a small group of dual-degree students, including Ivy Wei, MBA/MS 2020, launched the Erb Institute’s first-ever DEI panel. Ivy helped bring leaders in business sustainability from across industries to Ann Arbor for a thought-provoking panel about the intersections of business, sustainability and DEI.

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Erb Institute Business Partners

Patti Poppe: Diversity and inclusion delivering results in Michigan

President and CEO of Consumers Energy, Patti Poppe, is the first female CEO of the 130-year-old company and the second Fortune 500 CEO in Michigan. At the 2019 CEO Summit, she shared how she, in her role, advocates for diversity that doesn’t stop at gender equality, but extends across social identities, from race and ethnicity to sexual orientation and beyond. Patti Poppe also shared Consumers Energy’s commitment to renewable energy and urged attendees to capitalize on the opportunity clean energy presents.

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KoAnn Vikoren Skrzyniarz: Delivering the good life in Detroit

CEO and founder of Sustainable Brands, KoAnn Vikoren Skrzyniarz shared why Detroit makes the perfect place for their 2019 flagship conference: “We chose Detroit as a backdrop for this global conversation because the city and the people within in it have made significant progress in redefining and redesigning the Good Life in the last decade.”

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Ouida Chichester: Women’s rights are human rights

BSR Manager Ouida Chichester sat down with the Erb Institute to share her insights on the business case for human rights and how companies big and small can best address human rights violations internally and throughout their supply chains.

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