Photo by © Erin Lubin / Greenpeace
Annie Leonard is the Executive Director of Greenpeace USA. Leonard began her career at Greenpeace in 1988 and has returned to help the organization inspire and mobilize millions of people to take action to create a more sustainable future together. She is based in San Francisco.
Leonard has over two decades of experience investigating and explaining the environmental and social impacts of our stuff: where it comes from, how it gets to us, and where it goes after we get rid of it. Her film, The Story of Stuff, blossomed into The Story of Stuff Project, which works to empower people around the globe to fight for a more sustainable and just future. The project has built a community of over half a million people and released 8 more videos since The Story of Stuff, which have been viewed over 40 million times and been incorporated into countless school and faith curricula. In 2010, Simon & Schuster published Leonard’s New York Times bestselling book, The Story of Stuff, which takes a deeper dive into the issues of the film.
A hallmark of Leonard’s work with The Story of Stuff Project has been her keen recognition that solving environmental crises requires working across a wide range of movements to fix economic and political systems that are currently dominated by corporations at the expense of people’s health.
Leonard currently serves on the boards of GAIA and Public Citizen and has previously served on the boards of the Grassroots Recycling Network, the Environmental Health Fund, Global Greengrants India, Greenpeace India, and the International Forum on Globalization. She earned her undergraduate degree at Barnard College, Columbia University and has a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Cornell University. During Leonard's tenure at Greenpeace, she was arrested for protesting a business that was exporting hazardous waste to South Africa under the apartheid regime, and dumping it in a black community.