Emmy-award-winning journalist Jane Pauley sat down recently with two Purpose Prize fellows, Libba and Gifford Pinchot, to film a segment for NBC’s TODAY show. Pauley selected the couple for her “Your Life Calling” segment because, in their fifties, the Pinchots founded the Bainbridge Graduate Institute (BGI) to train future business leaders to go green.
After decades spent training executives at Fortune 100 businesses in innovation, the Pinchots used their retirement savings to begin to train new leaders in innovative environmental and social sustainability practices. “We realized that businesses were calling the shots in our society, and yet business leaders were ignoring broader responsibility for the environment and the future. We saw the need to incorporate environmental responsibility into business education,” they said.
So in 2002, the Pinchots created the institute on Bainbridge Island in Washington State, integrating traditional business education with values of social justice, social responsibility and environmental sustainability. BGI became the first graduate school to offer an MBA in Sustainable Business with the motto: “Changing business for good.” Since then, the institute has opened several locations and has graduated more than 450 people worldwide.
The Pinchots are Purpose Prize fellows, people over 60 who put their experience to work, taking on a range of social problems our society faces today.
Watch the TODAY show’s story about the Pinchots here.