The Carlyle Group has hired Jackie Roberts as the firm’s first Chief Sustainability Officer. Ms. Roberts comes to Carlyle from the Environmental Defense Fund where she was a Senior Director of the Idea Bank for the US Climate and Energy Program. Ms. Roberts begins her duties in mid-February and will be based in Washington, DC.
As Chief Sustainability Officer, Ms. Roberts will lead Carlyle’s global environmental, social and governance efforts (ESG) and work closely with the firm’s portfolio companies to drive understanding and adoption of ESG principles.
“With her extensive background in tying business strategy to sustainability opportunities, Jackie will help ensure that Carlyle makes the most of our ESG efforts as we work to create value for our investors. We view ESG as not just compatible with value creation, but a tool to help us maximize returns,” said Carlyle Co-CEO and Chief Investment Officer William Conway, Jr.
A 17-year veteran of Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), Ms. Roberts has been active in emerging technologies and climate and energy issues as Director of Sustainable Technologies for the Washington-based nonprofit group, which works to solve critical environmental problems facing the planet. At EDF, she also launched the Corporate Partners Program in which the group worked with corporations including McDonald’s and FedEx to merge business innovation with environmental strategy. Ms. Roberts spent a year on corporate sustainability issues as a Senior Faculty Fellow at Harvard Business School. She has also consulted on corporate environmental strategies and worked as an engineer for the US Environmental Protection Agency.
“Carlyle’s embrace of sustainability issues and wealth creation makes this a particularly promising opportunity. With its efforts to help create the Private Equity Growth Capital Council’s Guidelines for Responsible Investment and EcoValuScreen with the Environmental Defense Fund, Carlyle established itself as an early leader in this area. This gives us a running start that I believe has much run room. I especially look forward to working with the investment teams on these important matters,” said Ms. Roberts.
Ms. Roberts, 51, earned her BS in Chemical Engineering from Yale University, an MBA from the Yale School of Management, and a Masters in Environmental Studies from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.
The Carlyle Group invests in buyouts, growth capital, real estate and leveraged finance in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and South America. The firm employs 1,450 people in 34 offices across six continents and is based in Washington, DC (www.carlyle.com).
“Carlyle was one of the first major alternative investment firms to incorporate environmental, social and governance issues into its investment process. Bringing someone of Jackie’s caliber to Carlyle deepens our commitment – a commitment that is critical to our limited partners, employees and the communities in which we invest,” said David Marchick, Managing Director and Head of Global External Affairs.
© 2014 PEPD • Private Equity’s Leading News Magazine • 2-13-14