Adam Werbach is the co-founder of yerdle.
A lifelong organizer, at age 23 Werbach was elected the youngest-ever President of the Sierra Club, the oldest and largest environmental organization in the United States. At the Sierra Club Werbach helped pass legislation to create Death Valley National Park, the largest national park in the lower 48 states.
He went on to create the media and strategy company Act Now, which he sold to the Publicis Groupe in 2007, becoming the Chief Sustainability Officer for Saatchi & Saatchi and helping many of the world’s largest companies create, launch and market new products and initiatives. He was named to the American Advertising Federation’s Hall of Achievement, which he described as, “like Sarah Palin getting an award from the American Grammatical Society.”
Adam was recruited by yerdle co-founder Andy Ruben to engage Walmart’s 2 million employees, an effort that landed him on the cover of Fast Company Magazine with the headline, “He Sold His Soul to Walmart.” He’s not looking forward to explaining that to his three young children.
Werbach’s most recent book, Strategy for Sustainability, was published by Harvard Business School Press and is taught in business schools including Wharton and Stanford.
Twice elected to the International Board of Greenpeace, Werbach is a frequent commentator on sustainable business, serves as the sustainability correspondent for The Atlantic.com and appears on networks including BBC, NPR, and CNN, and shows ranging from the The O’Reilly Factor to Charlie Rose. In 2011 he was named a young global leader by the World Economic Forum. He tweets at @adamwerbach.
Four things you might not know about Adam
He spent ten years creating a feature film on the rise of Indie Rock, entitled This Is Noise Pop! Rolling Stone Magazine called it one of the 7 best music documentaries of 2011. It has only been shown once.
He has seven fingers on his left hand. (Not really.)
He provoked a small constitutional crisis in the city of San Francisco when he was appointed to the city’s public utilities commission by a rebellious supervisor serving as acting mayor while Mayor Willie Brown was out of the country.
His six year old daughter Pearl is raising a praying mantis colony in his living room.
About Andy Ruben
Andy Ruben is the co-founder of yerdle.
He previously spent 10 years at Walmart, where he was widely recognized for leading their sustainability efforts, reimagining their private brands and leading eCommerce initiatives like home grocery delivery.
A TED speaker who has been featured on NPR’s All Things Considered and in The New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, Ruben, one of Walmart’s youngest corporate officers, has testified before the US Senate and the House of Representatives as an expert in business and sustainability.
Ruben is one of six leaders (including Hall of Fame Coach John Wooden) featured in the book Organizational Champions and his accomplishments were highlighted by bestselling author Daniel Goleman (Emotional Intelligence and Ecological Intelligence) and Pulitzer Prize winning writer Tom Freidman.
As Walmart’s first Chief Sustainability Officer, Ruben positioned the company into what was described as the “epicenter of sustainability.” Within three years his innovative approach transformed nearly every area of Walmart’s global business, generating hundreds of millions of dollars in bottom line efficiencies while altering the business plans of 60,000+ suppliers across hundreds of industries and consumer categories.
Following his success in the sustainability area, Ruben returned to consumer products to “re-imagine” the role of private brands, including launching a new billion dollar brand and repositioning several of the world’s largest brands. His efforts have catalyzed the industry and accelerated the role of private brands across retailing.
As part of the “re-imagine” effort, Ruben leveraged social media to improve the quality of Walmart’s private brands. By utilizing real time statistical analysis of tweets and social posts, Walmart was able to identify potential quality issues before they became widespread. In essence, Ruben leveraged the power of customers to create feedback loops for its private brand vendors resulting in better products in Walmart stores.
After moving with his wife and two children to the Bay Area to lead Walmart’s integration of e-Commerce, Ruben launched several innovative programs including online grocery and the ability to order items on-line and pick them up in store the same day.
Ruben graduated Cum Laude with a BS in Engineering and an MBA, both from Washington University in St. Louis. He has been recognized professionally as the Sam M. Walton Entrepreneur of the Year, a Retailing Rising Star by Chain Store Age, and a 40 Under 40 Business Leader.
About Carl Tashian
Carl Tashian is co-founder and VP of engineering at yerdle.
A software developer and interaction designer, he has been building tools for the sharing economy since before it had a name. As senior engineer joining the founding team at Zipcar in 2001, Tashian built and scaled the company’s innovative technology as it grew from 25 cars in Cambridge, MA. Tashian wrote the code that unlocks your Zipcar. His engineering and design work shaped the DNA of the company. He developed Zipcar’s Six Simple Rules, designed and built the company’s customer service intranet. He was also responsible for day-to-day technology operations, including highly available network, system, and Oracle database infrastructure design and administration.
Tashian started writing software when he was 14, and his How Do They Do That With HTML?, in 1995, was one of the most widely-read references on the subject, with millions of visitors at the dawn of the Web. While at Case Western, Tashian started a social network popular at the university called home.cwru.edu and was hired by the school to develop and maintain it.
As Director of Technology at Participatory Politics Foundation, Tashian led a small, distributed team developing OpenGovernment.org, which seeks to bring transparency and civic engagement in state politics, supported with a grant from the Sunlight Foundation.
His work has been featured in the New York Times, Dwell, Paper Magazine, Studio 360, the New Yorker blog, Hacker News, and Fast Company.
He co-founded OurGoods.org, a New York-based bartering network for creative professionals founded in 2009. OurGoods received a Rockefeller Foundation Cultural Innovation grant in 2011.
Tashian received a BSE in Computer Engineering from Case Western Reserve University.