A 25th Anniversary Interview: Rainforest Alliance
For the second installment of La Piana’s 25th Anniversary Interview Series, I had the opportunity to instigate a conversation between Daniel Katz—an early client, who founded the Rainforest Alliance 36 years ago and now serves as the board chair—and the organization’s Digital Fundraising Manager, Camila Flanagan, a passionate and innovative Colombian-American millennial environmentalist. The two had an energetic, wide-ranging discussion on the long arc of the conservation movement and passing the baton to the next generation, balancing the urgency of the climate crisis with reasons for hope, the influence of markets and social media, why it’s so darned hard to figure out what kind of detergent to use, how the social sector needs to be disrupted to make a bigger impact, and why Daniel thinks nonprofit jobs are the jobs of the future.
Throughout—even when talk turned to corporate greenwashing and whether we have the collective will to make some personal sacrifices to make the world a better place—I couldn’t help but be inspired and encouraged by the intergenerational gratitude, curiosity, and rapport between the two. With so much negative press around bridging generational styles and cultures at work, Daniel and Camila provide a model for how, when we focus on what we can learn from each other, these differences can empower our causes and enable our work to extend beyond a generation. They may even have launched a new mentorship-based environmental organization at the end!