Why the Chief Environmentalist Strategist at Microsoft thinks Sustainability is the biggest business and economic opportunity of the 21st Century… and how it already impacts Santa Barbara.

Spend an enjoyable evening with Rob Bernard, Chief Environmental Strategist and Microsoft, and learn why sustainability is no longer just a moral argument made by tree huggers and environmentalist, but one that now has the full throated support and resources of major businesses aligned to solve this problem.  The enormous consequences of climate change and human activity are no longer theoretical, giving rise to an entire ecosystem of established companies and startups that collectively seek to solve or mitigate ramifications associated with water, drought, food, energy, and more.  In addition to Rob’s keynote talk, we will also have panelists discussing the local challenges that face us, and the emerging opportunities and initiatives some companies and organizations in town are already pursuing.


Rob Bernard, Chief Environmental Strategist

Rob Bernard is Microsoft’s chief environmental strategist. As part of the company’s  corporate, external and legal affairs group, Rob is responsible for defining and  implementing the global strategy for Microsoft’s environmental efforts. His work includes working across the company to maintain carbon neutrality, advance our investments in renewable energy, improve energy efficiency in operations, and work with customers and partners to help empower them to better leverage IT to drive a more sustainable planet.

Rob joined Microsoft in 1997, and has held leadership roles ranging from marketing to business development and partnerships and technical management. He has served on a number of industry and non-profit boards and has spoken worldwide on the opportunities for IT to transform the way society uses resources. Rob earned his MBA from the Wharton School of Business. He is a regular contributor to the Microsoft Green Blog


Jessica Perkins, Sustainability Lead, Apeel Sciences

Jess Perkins in the Sustainability Lead for Apeel Sciences. Her background is in Environmental Engineering from Tufts University, BS, MS. She has worked in the Environmental Technology groups at both the Dow Chemical Company and Apple Inc.

Jess earned her MA from the Technology Management Program (TMP) from UCSB in 2016 and is expected to complete a PhD from Bren School of Environmental Science & Management this Spring 2018. Jess is responsible for developing and implementing Apeel’s sustainability strategy as it pertains to product development, operations, and social responsibility.



This Program will be moderated by Albert Oaten. Albert is the Vice President of Market Development at SecureDocs. Albert works with the team to identify new markets and market entry strategies. In his role, Albert speaks at association and industry seminars and events and helps lead rapid expansion into new markets. Albert is a surprisingly good athlete and plays a mean game of tennis. And (lucky for us) as a former actor, he is always prepared for an entertaining company skit. Albert graduated from Stanford University and has an MBA with honors from the Goizueta School of Business at Emory University.

Event Registration

When:  Wednesday, March 21, 2017, 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Where: 670 Mission Canyon Rd., Santa Barbara, CA 93105


  • Student: $15.00
  • General-Early-Bird (online only): $30.00
    Sign up now & save $10 off general walk-in rate. Online offer ends Monday, March 19 at 6 p.m.
  • General-Walk-in: $40.00
  • Parking: FREE


  • 5:00 – 6:00 Networking Hour, Online Check-in & Registration for Walk-ins
  • 6:00 – 7:30 Presentation/Discussion
  • 7:30 – 8:00 Q&A

Tickets include appetizers and refreshments for both online and walk-in registrants. (Beer or wine separate– cash or pre-paid online or at check-in table.)

If you miss the Online Early-Bird Offer, we welcome guests on the day of the event at the Walk-in rate. (Online rate not applicable.) 

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