BOARD MEMBERS

Governance Board

  • Inka Apter
    Facilitating Manager of Fabric R&D, Eileen Fisher
    Inka Apter
    Facilitating Manager of Fabric R&D, Eileen Fisher

    Sustainable Cotton Panel | Weds. Oct. 11th

    Inka Apter - Facilitating Manager of Fabric R&D at Eileen Fisher with 20 years of experience sourcing and developing fabrics with mills across the globe. My passion for fibers, textiles and know-how of the textile industry has led me on a quest for beautiful sustainable materials. Leading the Fabric R&D team at Eileen Fisher has enabled me to collaborate with like-minded producers on new frontiers of development and work on reaching our company sustainability goals while maintaining unique design esthetic and high quality criteria. My current focus is on recycled materials, technologies and circular economy for textiles.

    On a personal history level, I was born in Dubrovnik, Croatia. I studied ethnology , cultural anthropology and textile restoration. My job at EF has allowed me to seamlessly blend passion for textiles with desire to protect the environment and reduce waste.

  • Cara Chacon
    Patagonia
    Ventura, California
    Cara Chacon
    Patagonia

    Cara has worked in the corporate responsibility industry as an executive, consultant, trainer and auditor for the past 20 years.  She is currently Patagonia’s VP of Social and Environmental Responsibility and leads a global team of professionals that set strategy and implement the company’s sustainability initiatives. Cara is also the co-chair of Patagonia's sustainability decision making body called the “Footprint Council.” She also served on the Board of Directors of the Fair Labor Association from 2012 to 2016. In her past role at STR Responsible Sourcing, she led a global team dedicated to the development and execution of CSR/sustainability trainings and capacity building engagements for brands, suppliers and auditors. In her career, Cara has conducted over 1,000 supplier social and environmental compliance assessments and capacity building engagements in over 35 countries across 25 different industries. She has a Master’s degree in International Affairs and a Bachelor’s degree in Government from California State University, Sacramento. 

  • Paolo Foglia
    ICEA
    Bologna, Italy
    Paolo Foglia
    ICEA

    Paolo has been personally involved in the development of the organic textile sector since 1998 when he developed the first Italian standard for organic textile and the related certification scheme.  Paolo organized the first international conference on organic textile in Italy in 1999.  He was appointed Textile Certification Manager in 2000.  Since then, Paolo has been actively involved and committed in the development of the organic textile sector, managing ICEA’s certification scheme, participating in the development of the Global Organic Textile Standard and attending seminars/conferences around the world.  He actively participates in the TE Global Recycled Standard International Working Group as well.  Paolo has a master degree in agricultural economics, and more than 20 years of experience in the certification of environmentally sound and socially responsible products and services. Currently he is the Research and Development Manager of the Italian Institute for Ethical and Environmental Certification (ICEA) and, at the same time, holds the position of Certification Manager for several sectors including:  textile, eco building materials, biofuels, CSR.

  • Beth Jensen
    Director of Sustainable Business Solutions, VF Corporation
    Beth Jensen
    Director of Sustainable Business Solutions, VF Corporation

    Beth Jensen is Director of Sustainable Business Solutions at VF Corporation. In this role, she is responsible for driving the materials and climate change goals within the Scale for Good pillar of the VF Made for Change strategy. Prior to VF Corporation, Beth spent nearly nine years overseeing sustainability at Outdoor Industry Association, the leading trade association for the outdoor industry. During this time, she built the OIA sustainability program and department from the ground-up, driving collaborative, scaled environmental and social responsibility initiatives within the outdoor products industry via the Outdoor Industry Association Sustainability Working Group (OIA SWG). Beth’s role at OIA included strategic planning and budgeting; leadership and development of strategic partnerships, including with Textile Exchange and the Sustainable Apparel Coalition; and oversight of the SWG programs and initiatives.

  • Karla Magruder
    Fabrikology
    Hoboken, NJ
    Karla Magruder
    Fabrikology

    Karla Magruder has been in the textile industry for more than 25 years with global experience from fiber to finished garments.  She founded Fabrikology International, a textile consulting firm, specializing in textile sourcing, education and business development in 2003.   The company has worked in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors in building strategic development plans, launching new products, and organizing tradeshow seminars and conferences. Karla has led her team in supporting the development of trade between US brands and retailers and garment manufacturers from Haiti and Africa through USAID sponsored programs.  She has worked as a Textile Exchange Ambassador with the mission of facilitating the acceleration of sustainable practices in the textile value chain. Prior to founding Fabrikology International she led the apparel launch of Ingeo fibers, the 1st manmade fiber created from 100% annually renewable resources, launched several performance fabrics and technologies in the outdoor and apparel market and headed the development of an active apparel collection for a global company.   She has been a Contributing Editor to Textile Insight and EcoTextile News.

  • YickChung Man
    Managing Director of Cotton Procurement and Cotton Operations Esquel Enterprises Limited
    YickChung Man
    Managing Director of Cotton Procurement and Cotton Operations Esquel Enterprises Limited

    Mr. Man YichChung has been in the textile industry for over 40 years with global experience from cotton seed to shirt. He is now responsible for Corporate cotton procurement and cotton operations to enable Esquel with sustainable and stable cotton supply. In this role, he serves as a key point person for the company connecting strategic partners, associations and institutes to facilitate Esquel to create positive change and competitive advantages. YC is now the Standing Director of Xinjiang Cotton Association and Director of China XPCC Cotton Association.

    YC is the expert of world cotton variety and cotton quality. He has a wealth experience on cotton planting in Xinjiang China especially organic cotton, through the establishing and over 20 years’ management of Esquel’s own cotton farm. He is also professional in sustainable cotton especially organic cotton which Esquel owns an annually 4% consumption of global organic cotton production, and the share also keeps growing. YC is also well esteemed in the industry with management experience on global sourcing for yarn, dyestuff, chemicals, auxiliaries, coal, machinery etc., as well as textile operations establishment and running, ranging from cotton ginning mill, spinning mill to fabric mill and garment factory.

  • Ben Mead
    Hohenstein Institute
    Elon, North Carolina, USA
    Ben Mead
    Hohenstein Institute

    Ben is the Managing Director for Hohenstein Institute Americas.  In this role Ben has OEKO-TEX responsibilities for the United States and promotes Hohenstein’s expertise as a globally recognized leader in textile research and testing.  He also serves as the company’s liaison with governmental agencies, industry collaborations, and trade associations.  He previously consulted with a variety of brands and industry associations including Textile Exchange and AFIRM.  In those roles, Ben was responsible for content development, training, and establishing partnerships withindustry leaders and experts to increase industry engagement in green chemistry and sustainable textile processing.  Ben started his career working for Nike, Inc where he helped develop a restricted substances program and was also involved in implementation of both sustainable materials and water programs. Ben has degrees in Chemistry and Textile Chemistry from North Carolina State University.

  • Mark Prosé
    Executive Committee: Secretary - Control Union
    Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
    Mark Prosé
    Executive Committee: Secretary - Control Union

    Mark Prosé manages Control Union’s inspection, auditing and certification activities in East Africa. In this region Control Union focuses primarily on certification of social and environmental standards in agriculture. Mark has worked in the certification sector for Control Union since 2002, and has been involved in sustainable textile certification since 2004. In 2011, he moved to Bangladesh to start a Control Union office there. He did the same in Tanzania in 2014. Mark is a M.Sc. graduate of Wageningen University, The Netherlands, where he majored in Sociology and Economics of Rural Development. His work experience ranges geographically from Eastern and Southern Africa to South Asia and Central Europe.

  • Felix Rauer
    Otto Group
    Hamburg, Germany
    Felix Rauer
    Otto Group

    Felix has worked in the environmental field for the past 10 years. At the Otto Group, he has been responsible for sustainable products, working intensively with different stakeholders. This included working together with TE on transparency and more stringent certifications around organic cotton and down. He developed the sustainable textile strategy including both a communication frame and a toolkit to rate fibers and standards and is guiding the various companies and departments among the Otto Group to integrate sustainability into their business model. Felix is also involved into the work of the German Partnership for Sustainable Textiles with a focus on chemical management and capacity development.

  • Heinrich Schultz
    Vice Chair | Founder of OrganiMark
    Stellenbosch, South Africa
    Heinrich Schultz
    Vice Chair | Founder of OrganiMark

    OrganiMark, founded in July 2008, is a food, textiles and leather supply chain engineering and management firm linking sustainable primary producers with high value local and global markets. The Firm specializes in supply chain optimization and trade management through investing in agricultural production zones and value added processing facilities for sustainably produced products. The company’s aim is to create sustainable businesses through long term supply chain partnerships in line with its brand integrity and identity, which promotes economic, social and environmental responsibility.

    Heinrich is also the Chairman of Textile Exchange Europe and recently founded the Southern African Sustainable Cotton Cluster where he serves as Executive Manager and Board Member.  Heinrich has a Business Degree from the University of Pretoria (South Africa) and completed his training in Leather Processing with LIRI at Rhodes University (South Africa), and Textile& Garment Manufacturing with CSIR TexTech at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (South Africa).

  • Sarah Thorson
    Executive Committee Chair; Target
    Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
    Sarah Thorson
    Executive Committee Chair; Target

    Sarah Thorson has been with Target for 14 years and has responsibility for leading teams that span Product Engineering, Product Insights, Project Management and Global Operations for apparel, home, hardlines and commodity products.  She has also led teams in Global Sourcing, and spent 11 years with Vanity Fair as the Target Representative in Minneapolis.  She is passionate about sustainability, innovation and R&D, as well as understanding the guest needs.  She was raised in Minneapolis and attended the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities Campus for Accounting.

  • Heidi Vaughn
    Senior Director, Nike
    Heidi Vaughn
    Senior Director, Nike

    Heidi Vaughan is a SR Director at Nike, Inc. working in Global Apparel Materials leading development teams responsible for Color, Branding & Packaging, and Print & Pattern.  She has been with Nike, Inc. for 29 years, and her experience has ranged from SR Material Research Director in Apparel Innovation focusing on engineered textiles, to Apparel Material Manufacturing Director in both Asia and the Americas. Her responsibilities included strategic source base management focused on holistic supply chain engagement from fibers to finishes.  She has been actively involved in implementing and scaling Nike’s environmentally preferred material initiatives.  Heidi has a strong appreciation for the need to embed sustainable practices throughout every aspect of textile manufacturing- from concept through production.

  • Jerry Wheeler
    Executive Committee: Treasurer - Ecocentric Brands
    Denver, Colorado, USA
    Jerry Wheeler
    Executive Committee: Treasurer - Ecocentric Brands

    As founder of ecoCentric Ltd, Jerry is dedicated to helping companies build sustainable operating plans that increase transparency, streamline processes and develop healthy products and business practices. Ecocentric's practices are designed to limit impacts, while connecting with sales and marketing to grow top line sales and a healthy bottom line.  Ecocentric puts these practices to work with their own brands Kastlfel and Billboard Ecology.

  • Marci Zaroff
    Founder/CEO, MetaWear; Founder, Under the Canopy; Author, ECOrenaissance: Co-creating a Stylish, Sexy and Sustainable World
    New York City, New York, USA
    Marci Zaroff
    Founder/CEO, MetaWear; Founder, Under the Canopy; Author, ECOrenaissance: Co-creating a Stylish, Sexy and Sustainable World

    Marci coined the term “ECOfashion” and is an internationally recognized ECOlifestyle entrepreneur, educator, innovator and expert. Founder of Under the Canopy and Metawear and Producer of “THREAD Documentary|Driving Fashion Forward,” Marci has been instrumental in driving authenticity, environmental leadership & social justice worldwide for over 25 years. Board Member of the Organic Trade AssociationTextile ExchangeFashion Revolution Day and Fashion Positive, Zaroff was a key figure in the development of the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) and first Fair Trade Textile Certification. Marci has received countless recognitions, including the Natural Product Industry's "Socially Responsible Business Award," New York Moves "Power Woman Award," Fashion Group International's "Rising Star Award” and a prestigious “Henry Crown Fellowship” of The Aspen Institute, and is featured in the book “ECO AMAZONS: 20 Women Who Are Transforming the World.

European Board of Trustees

  • Arun Ambatipudi
    Chetna Organic
    Secunderabad, India
    Arun Ambatipudi
    Chetna Organic
  • Prama Bhardwaj
    Mantis World
    London, UK
    Prama Bhardwaj
    Mantis World

    Prama started Mantis World with her student savings and it is now a successful supplier of blank clothing to the imprintables industry across Europe.  Sourcing from Tanzania, Bangladesh and Pakistan, they were the first company in the UK imprintable sector to introduce organic cotton garments.  Mantis World is recognized as a pioneer in sustainable fashion basic blanks, the largest supplier of blank babywear in Europe and has won multiple awards.

  • Mani Chinnaswamy
    Appachi Cotton Company/Ethicus
    Pollachi, Tamil Nadu, India
    Mani Chinnaswamy
    Appachi Cotton Company/Ethicus

    Mani hails from a 3rd generation cotton family.  Cotton production is something that runs in his blood and has for generations.  His grandfather started a cotton ginning business in 1946, today called Apachi Cotton.  Mani, an MBA graduate from the University of Philadelphia, developed a model of Integrated Cotton Contract Farming (ICCF) in 2002.  In 2008, Mani joined forces with his wife, Vijayalakshmi, established India’s first ethical fashion brand “Ethicus” in 2009, something that would connect him to the end-customer and earn them an identity.  The couple bought 22 old jacquard handlooms, repaired them and set them up within their own premises.  Their Ethicus brand (“Ethics” and “Us”) caters to the demands of customers for a higher-end stylish handloom project.

  • Dr. Helen Crowley
    Executive Committee: Vice Chair - Kering
    Paris, France
    Dr. Helen Crowley
    Executive Committee: Vice Chair - Kering

    Helen is a Conservation & Ecosystem Service Specialist at Kering, owners of Puma and many other brands such as Stella McCartney, Gucci, Yves St Laurent, and Volcom.  She has worked in the international conservation and development arenas for over 25 years.  Most recently, Helen has focused on integrating biodiversity and ecosystems into corporate sustainability strategies including exploring ways for small scale producers to participate in global supply chains.  She spent many years working on projects in Africa and Madagascar for the Wildlife Conservation Society including developing the first REDD project in Madagascar and a program of organic cotton production with local communities in Zambia and Madagascar.  Helen has a PhD in Ecology at the Australian National University and is on the Board of the Wildlife Friendly Enterprise Network.

  • Anna-Karin Dahlberg
    Lindex
    Gothenburg, Sweden
    Anna-Karin Dahlberg
    Lindex

    Anna-Karin has a background as Assortment Manager at Lindex Ladies’ Department as well as head of Lindex production offices in China, India and HK/Guangzhou.  Anna-Karin is now the corporate sustainability manager of Lindex, being overall responsible for Lindex sustainability work. She and her team are setting the strategies and targets and governs the work on a strategic level, working closely with the management group. She is s responsible for a global team of 13 people (formal manager and content manager) One of the goals is to successfully support and govern teams in buying and production as well as the rest of the organisation to reach Lindex sustainability goals for 2020. Anna-Karin also works closely with the customer experience team to engage with the consumer.  

  • Avinash Karmarkar
    Pratibha Syntex
    Indore, M.P., India
    Avinash Karmarkar
    Pratibha Syntex

    Avinash is working as Vice President- Vasudha Farm Initiatives with Pratibha Syntax Limited, a large vertically integrated and sustainably driven textile manufacturing company. Promoting sustainable agri practices with 30000+ farmers. He is also on Executive Committee of Abinav NGO promoting organic farming since last more than 10 years.

  • Ben Ramsden
    Executive Committee: Secretary - OrganiMark
    London, United Kingdom
    Ben Ramsden
    Executive Committee: Secretary - OrganiMark

    Ben has been building value chain communities since 2005 when he established the world’s first sustainable underwear brand, Pants to Poverty.  Through this brand he created a pioneering value chain community model connecting farmers through the complex textile value chain directly to consumers across more than 20 markets.  He then established the charity Pi Foundation that launched a farmer led cotton seed development organisation in 2008 and the award-winning 3D accounting model in 2012 that monetises the social and environmental costs of production into the cost of garments.  He was then able to take the models he developed under Pants and Pi to scale through the central role he played in the establishment and scaling of the global Fashion Revolution campaign and the Chetna Coalition. After co-founding the Supply Chain DLT company Resonance, securing the company investment and participation in the TechStars programme with multinational pilots, he then joined OrganiMark, an award-winning value chain engineering company.  Today he is leading on developing the global community of excellence for OrganiMark with the objective of connecting the world’s leading brands to regenerative farming communities through optimised and resilient value chain networks.

  • Heinrich Schultz
    Vice Chair | Founder of OrganiMark
    Stellenbosch, South Africa
    Heinrich Schultz
    Vice Chair | Founder of OrganiMark

    OrganiMark, founded in July 2008, is a food, textiles and leather supply chain engineering and management firm linking sustainable primary producers with high value local and global markets. The Firm specializes in supply chain optimization and trade management through investing in agricultural production zones and value added processing facilities for sustainably produced products. The company’s aim is to create sustainable businesses through long term supply chain partnerships in line with its brand integrity and identity, which promotes economic, social and environmental responsibility.

    Heinrich is also the Chairman of Textile Exchange Europe and recently founded the Southern African Sustainable Cotton Cluster where he serves as Executive Manager and Board Member.  Heinrich has a Business Degree from the University of Pretoria (South Africa) and completed his training in Leather Processing with LIRI at Rhodes University (South Africa), and Textile& Garment Manufacturing with CSIR TexTech at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (South Africa).

  • Amit Shah
    Spectrum
    Mumbai, India
    Amit Shah
    Spectrum

    Amit, CEO & Founding Director of Spectrum International has been an integral part of the textile industry for the past 18 years. Starting with his 80-year old legacy business of cotton spinning, Amit integrated the business backwards to farm and gin organic cotton in 1998. Since then Amit has always focused in trying to create a business model that has social, environmental and economic development as its core drivers. Amit's unique strength lies in bringing to commercial fruition ideas that most often stay in the realm of non-profits. Today, Spectrum works with over 30,000 farmers for growing organic and sustainable products in India in 4 different states and catering to over 10 retailer brand value-chains globally. Amit's personal goal right from the beginning was to work with marginal farmers of India for the development of society creating businesses that not only excite the bottom-line but add value to the people of this country and the world.  He strives for every day.

  • Aydin Unsal
    Executive Committee: Treasurer - Egedeniz Textiles A.S.
    Izmir, Turkey
    Aydin Unsal
    Executive Committee: Treasurer - Egedeniz Textiles A.S.

    In the late 1980’s, after 10 years in the family business of trading and processing various agricultural products in Turkey, Aydin began contracting farmers to grow local organic dried fruits. Aydin has been one of the early producers and exporters of various organic fruits, mainly dried grapes and figs. During early 1990’s he helped found Egedeniz, a family company, which is the pioneer company in Turkey dealing in production and sales of certified organic cotton from fiber through yarns, fabrics and garments.

  • Bruno Van Steenberghe
    GreenLama SPRL
    Genval, Belgium
    Bruno Van Steenberghe
    GreenLama SPRL

    Bruno Van Steenberghe has worked in the textile industry for more than 20 years. He’s been in charge of the sourcing, product development, supply chain and sustainability for different brands and has extensive field experience in many countries. After 12 years in the conventional textile industry he decided to follow his convictions by returning to study in 2010, focusing on sustainable apparel/textiles to enhance his expertise.  He then co-created the sustainable brand Stanley & Stella in 2011 being responsible for building the sustainability strategy and production supply chain from scratch and improving local working conditions through several projects. Stanley & Stella is today a top user of Organic Cotton, growing very fast since 2013. In 2015, Bruno left Stanley & Stella and decided to launch a new sustainable brand of home textiles named KALANI that has been launched in December 2016. He also provides consultancy services to other entrepreneurs and companies, assisting in their journey towards sustainability.

  • Tong Yeung
    Mecilla
    Hong Kong, China
    Tong Yeung
    Mecilla

    Tong is a Director of Mecilla Limited.  He has over 6 years of experience in the sustainable agriculture and apparel industries.  Tong and Mecilla are pioneers in developing sustainable farming in rural China with a network of farmer’s co-ops,

    Agricultural experts, brands and designers.