Von Hernandez, Executive Director 2008-2014

Page - January 10, 2010
Von Hernandez was the Executive Director of Greenpeace Southeast Asia (GPSEA) from October 2008 until December 2014, leading the environmental group’s programs and operations in the Southeast Asian region.

Von HernandezEarlier on, he served as Campaigns Director for the organization, and was responsible for driving the group’s campaigns in Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines on a number of issues including climate change, forests, sustainable agriculture and toxics pollution.

An environmental activist for more than 20 years, Von initiated and led a number of  campaigns in the Philippines including  the approval of  landmark laws like the Ecological Waste Management Act and the  Clean Air Act. He also spearheaded campaigns to rehabilitate the Pasig River as well as efforts to clean-up toxic sites in former US military bases in the country. He founded and spearheaded various environmental coalitions at the national and international levels including the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives (GAIA), Waste Not Asia, Lakbay Kalikasan, the Ecowaste Coalition, and the Sagip Pasig Movement.

In 2003, Von was awarded the Goldman Environmental Prize for his work which led to the first national ban on waste incineration.  The Goldman Prize is considered to be the equivalent of the Nobel Prize for grassroots environmental activists.  Being the first Prize recipient from the Philippines, Asia Inc. magazine named him as one of Asia’s young movers and shakers in 2004. In 2007, he was also included in Time Magazine’s Heroes for the Environment, joining other innovative and influential protectors of the environment like Al Gore and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Wangari Maathai. More recently, Von was listed among the top 20 most trusted Filipinos by Reader’s Digest in its nationwide Trust Poll in 2010.

Von graduated from the University of the Philippines, with a Bachelor’s degree in English. He completed his Master in Public Management (MPM) degree from the National University of Singapore. The MPM is a prestigious program designed for senior managers by the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, and which includes spending a full semester at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.