Rupert founded the firm in 2009 - to help accelerate the transition to a sustainable economy by finding and placing the world's best business-orientated sustainability leaders in positions of maximum impact.
Rupert oversees the firm and additionally leads our EMEA practice.
Prior to Sustainable Means, his career included C-Suite Executive Search (Heidrick & Struggles), Investment Banking (JP Morgan), and Sustainability Entrepreneurship (3 start-ups from inception to profitability).
Rupert graduated from the University of Cambridge highest in his class (top first), winning the University Bronowski Prize in Natural Sciences in 1992. He trained on Wall Street and subsequently returned to the United States in 1998 as a Fulbright Scholar, researching responsible business and the psychology of altruism.
Passionate about ecological economics, Rupert took direct climate change action prior to undergraduate studies, spending several years developing micro-renewables and silviculture to help preserve rainforest and reduce climate impact in the APAC region.
He has spent >30 years puzzling over how to create an economy and a form of capitalism that is genuinely sustainable and supportive of life and human flourishing over the long term.
Partner, Global Head of Research
Dr. Barney Walker, formerly an MIT cleantech scientist, is Global Head of Teams at Sustainable Means, where he coordinates a network of researchers, consultants and contractors across the three major global regions to deliver outstanding impact outcomes for our clients.
Barney leads two of our four verticals - our fast-build sustainability consulting practice, (via acquisitions, team lifts and senior leader hires); and our ESG finance practice.
Previously, Barney was an EU-sponsored Research Fellow at MIT working at the interface between cleantech, smart materials, and 'blue skies’ research. Barney obtained his Ph.D. in Nanotech/Organic Chemistry from the University of Edinburgh. He is the author of 15 peer-reviewed scientific publications and has been invited to speak at numerous international conferences including the US National AAAS “Science without Borders” conference, Washington DC in 2011. He has previously advised on the implementation of renewable energy technologies and materials for government enterprises, green start-ups and regional cooperatives.
He currently lives in New Zealand with his young family and enjoys surfing empty west coast waves and spending time at his family's solar powered ‘bach’ in the mountains.
Research Principal, Sustainability Consulting Executive Search Practice and ESG Finance Acquisitions Practice, USA
Kelly Blaser is a research principal at Sustainable Means, currently on maternity leave. She supports the sustainability consulting executive recruitment practice and the firm's work with leading asset managers and investment banks scaling ESG finance capabilities.
Kelly has a background as an environmental lawyer working on ESG shareholder resolutions (climate risk, corporate governance, international human rights) to engage large corporations in the shift to a sustainable, Paris-aligned, economy. She has specialties in CSR/ESG, corporate regulatory law and environmental regulation.
Research Principal, ESG Finance Acquisitions Practice, USA
Kyra Auerbach has worked in sustainability for more than 30 years years and sits on the Board of Directors of Sustainable Means. She is an ESG investor in a private capacity and sits on several non-profit Boards.
Kyra brings her specialist investor knowledge to bear on ESG finance-related searches and acquisitions for Sustainable Means, from time to time.
Kyra's academic background is Harvard (AB, Psychology, Valedictorian), CIIS (MA, Somatic Psychotherapy), Dominican (MBA, Sustainable Business).
Research Principal, Strategy Practice, APAC
Natalie is the newest addition to the Sustainable Means network, supporting the strategy consulting practice. She brings deep insights from a decade as a strategy consultancy boutique owner, serving some of the world's best-known brands with behavioural and digital strategies.
In 2011, she founded Prime Decision, a leading UK behaviour change consultancy, specialised in applied behavioural economics. Natalie established a loyal network of commercial and academic consultants, including psychology professors from leading institutions such as University College London and the University of Bristol. Her projects spanned HR, Change Management, Sustainability, and Customer Experience. Clients included IKEA (Global), Great Western Railway, Sainsburys, OVO Energy, Toyota, Red Bull, Paypal Giving Fund and Bristol European Green Capital.
After graduating from the University of Oxford in 2004, Natalie began her career in marketing strategy, planning campaigns across EMEA and North America for B2B technology brands such as IBM, Google, Samsung, Toshiba and Microsoft. Increasingly focused on innovation, Natalie trained in Product Marketing Management and designed new agency services for demand generation, marketing automation and social media.
Currently based in Aotearoa / New Zealand, when not working you’ll likely find her gardening, dancing or hiking New Zealand’s great trails.
Finance Director, France & USA
Kathleen is a Chartered Professional Accountant in Canada, a Certified Public Accountant in the United States and holds a Diploma in International Financial Reporting from the ACCA in the UK. Upon graduating from the University of British Columbia with a Bachelor of Commerce, she began her career as an auditor at PricewaterhouseCoopers in Vancouver, Canada and then moved to Ernst & Young in Seattle, USA. Building upon her Big Four accounting experience, Kathleen shifted her focus to the private sector where she held senior finance positions in the manufacturing, consulting and forest industries.
After almost twenty years in the for-profit sector, she chose to move into the NGO space in order to positively impact charities and organizations that are focused on accelerating the creation of a sustainable future.
Currently based in France, Kathleen is passionate about art, having obtained an M.A. in Art History with a specialisation in colonialist art and design. In her free time she can be found hiking and cycling in the Alps and is an avid offshore sailor, having recently completed a transatlantic voyage.
Sustainable Means is set-up as a digital, 21st-century firm, selecting and deploying client-focused 'SWAT' teams from our network, arranged around specific client needs. We draw on a network of 15 specialized researchers, search consultants and back-office support staff, based in nine countries, in the three major global regions. This global breadth brings 24/7 coverage and specific language, industry sector and service-line expertise to serve the project at hand. What our diverse teams have in common is impeccable intellectual pedigree combined with an intense commitment to positive client outcomes, underlain by the commitment to our purpose - accelerating the transition to the future, sustainable economy.