Textile Exchange Team
Group Photo at the 2017 Textile Sustainability Conference | ERIKA NIZBORSKI PHOTOGRAPHY
Senior Advisory Team
- Ashley GillSenior Manager of Industry IntegrityAustin, Texas, USAAshley GillSenior Manager of Industry Integrity
Ashley Gill has been with Textile Exchange since 2010. She works in the Industry Integrity TEam to develop and manage the TE-owned standards and to align the industry in issues dealing with verification of product claims related to sustainability. Ashley leads the International Working Groups for the recycled standards (RCS and GRS) and the Responsible Down Standard. She is responsible for Textile Exchange’s Standard Setting Policies, and she also does key outreach to support companies in their understanding and adoption of the standards.
- Anne GillespieDirector of Industry IntegrityChelsea, QuebecAnne GillespieDirector of Industry Integrity
Anne is the Director of Industry Integrity for TE. She has worked on standard development, training and education on certification and transparency and is collaborating with other organizations and experts to continually increase the organic integrity of the cotton industry. She has over 15 years of experience working with retail, including 10 years as a product manager at Mountain Equipment Co-op where she converted their cotton program to organic. In 2005, she co-founded Continuum Textiles, a sales agency representing socially and environmentally responsible textile products.
- Sevilla GrangerProject and Program StrategistSan Francisco, California, USASevilla GrangerProject and Program StrategistSevilla Granger has worked extensively in various aspects of the sustainable textile and creative fields in the US and Europe and has served on various international working groups such as the Sustainable Textiles Coalition and the Responsible Wool, Down and Leather Working Groups. Her commitment to sustainable textiles sprang from her undergraduate work at North Carolina State University, well known for its Textile program, where she received her degree in Environmental Design with a minor in Textiles. Her professional engagement with advancing sustainability in the industry gained traction during her work at William Sonoma and Gap, Inc. It was further refined with leading US home textile brand Coyuchi, where she lead the team to be the first GOTS certified home textiles brand, as well as achieving Fair Trade certification.
- Céleste LiloreDirector of Industry EngagementNew YorkCéleste LiloreDirector of Industry Engagement
I’m an insatiably curious lifelong learner and a whirling dervish hula hoop phenom. I’m passionate about community, partnership, provenance, ethics, and timeless style. Through stories, I delight in making the complex simple. There’s nothing I like better than connecting in person, good old-fashioned “teeth and eyes time.”
My first job (not including babysitting and waitressing) was as the receptionist at Chanel HQ in Paris. It ignited my love affair with both product and fashion while elevating my commitment to service.
Since then, I’ve been….
- Marketing and Community Director and Entrepreneur in Residence, Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator
- Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Brooklyn Fashion + Design Accelerator
- Regional Director, Green Festival –New York
- Co-Founder and EcoPreneur, RESTORE Clothing
- Co-Founder, NOCHAIRS, Inc.
- Founding Member, Save The Garment Center
- La Rhea PepperManaging DirectorLander, Wyoming, USALa Rhea PepperManaging Director
La Rhea has an extensive background in the organic cotton agricultural sector as well as management and marketing. She is a 5th generation cotton farmer in Texas and her farm has been certified organic since 1991. She completed her BS in Education at Abilene Christian University in 1979 and Master of Business – Organizational Leadership in 2016. La Rhea was one of the co-founders of Organic Exchange and served as Chair of the Board until 2005 and then joined the Management TEam with the Exchange.
- Evonne TanData Management & China Strategy DirectorPetaling Jaya, MalaysiaEvonne TanData Management & China Strategy Director
Evonne spent the past 20 years improving data and reporting for companies around the world. From a manufacturing background, she moved on to consultancy with PwC and IBM, project management with Wessex Water before settling into the sustainability sector with CSR Consultancy. A graphic designer on the side, Evonne is passionate about data visualization and using data to tell a story.
Evonne started working with Textile Exchange in 2009, leading on data collection, analytics, reporting and consumer engagement. Currently, the Director of Data Management and China Strategy, Evonne holds two different portfolios in the company: one that focuses on creating value from data for textile sustainability and another to promote sustainable fiber and materials growth in the Chinese market.
- Liesl TruscottEuropean & Materials Strategy DirectorBath, United KingdomLiesl TruscottEuropean & Materials Strategy Director
Liesl Truscott is European and Materials Strategy Director with responsibility for developing and embedding Textile Exchange’s preferred materials program. Liesl has specialized in organic cotton and has a deep knowledge of the sector. With a first class degree in Environmental Management from the University of Newcastle in Australia, she has spent over twenty years in the fields of corporate social responsibility, occupational health and safety, and environmental management – working in both the private and public sector.
- Lee TylerSenior Manager of Standards AssuranceArlington, Texas, USALee TylerSenior Manager of Standards Assurance
Lee has been with Textile Exchange since 2008 and is primarily responsible for the consistent application of Textile Exchange standards by certified sites and certification bodies. This includes creating and maintaining an accreditation process, coordinating working groups, as well as providing guidance on the standards. He is also directly involved in the development and revision of standards and their supporting documentation. Additionally, Lee supports the financial and operational aspects of Textile Exchange. He holds a Master’s in Entrepreneurship, a Bachelor’s in Management, and a minor in Spanish from Texas Tech University.
- Donna WorleyDirector of Marketing Communications & Public RelationsLubbock, Texas, USADonna WorleyDirector of Marketing Communications & Public Relations
Donna leads Textile Exchange’s Marketing Communications team to ensure all focus areas within the organization receive a high level of visibility through innovative strategies involving internal and external communication, branding, marketing and public relations. In addition to this, Donna is also responsible for the oversight of TE’s global events to create greater visibility for TE and to provide a space for industry engagement. Prior to joining TE, Donna worked in Development and Public Relations for a higher education institution from which she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Organizational Leadership.
- Ryan YoungDirector of Strategy & Program DevelopmentSan Francisco, CARyan YoungDirector of Strategy & Program Development
At Textile Exchange, Ryan focuses on strategy and operations as well as program development. For strategy and operations, he ensures that TE’s work is well-aligned, well-coordinated, and focused on achieving TE’s mission and long term goals. For program development, Ryan drives projects that support and enable TE’s strategy and platforms. Prior to joining TE, Ryan led the development of the Higg Index 1.0 and 2.0 at the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. He has also consulted on sustainability to leading apparel brands and retailers, as well as to sustainability-related mutli-stakeholder organizations. Ryan started his sustainability career at Blu Skye Sustainability Consulting in 2008; prior to this, he developed a strong track record in general strategy and management consulting. Ryan has a B.A. in economics from Cornell University, and an M.B.A. in strategic management and marketing from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
- Taylor BittenbenderMembership CoordinatorNew York City, New York, USATaylor BittenbenderMembership Coordinator
Taylor joined Textile Exchange first as a membership assistant in February of 2018. Since then she has worked with the membership team to execute a new customer relationship management software. In August of 2018, Taylor joined the Textile Exchange team full time as Membership Coordinator. Taylor works on enhancing membership value for current and potential members of Textile Exchange. As well, Taylor is the project manager for launching a community membership platform and assisting with the Home & Hospitality and China Strategy Working Groups. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Colorado at Boulder and was previously working in retail operations at Rag & Bone.
- Hanna DenesSenior Manager of StandardsBath, United KingdomHanna DenesSenior Manager of Standards
Originally from Sweden but living in the UK, Hanna Denes has been with Textile Exchange since 2010. Hanna works as a Sustainability Specialist focusing on Integrity and Materials. Hanna has a Batchelor’s degree in Environmental Policy and an MSc in Environmental Technology from Imperial College, London, and 15 years’ experience working in environmental management and sustainable development.
- Lisa EmbersonMaterials Platform CoordinatorLondon, United KingdomLisa EmbersonMaterials Platform Coordinator
Lisa joined Textile Exchange in 2014. As Materials Platform Coordinator, Lisa supports the delivery of Textile Exchange’s Materials Strategy, including the production of TE’s annual market reports and coordination of the Organic Cotton Round Table, amongst other responsibilities. Lisa has a BSc in International Development from the University of East Anglia and joined Textile Exchange after an internship with the UK’s Soil Association researching organic cotton and food security.
- Amish GosaiSouth Asia ManagerBangalore, Karnataka, IndiaAmish GosaiSouth Asia Manager
With a Bachelor degree in Engineering with major of Textile Technology from India and MBA in Luxury Goods and Fashion Industries from Paris, France. Amish has held various positions with Voltas, Decathlon & Agorcel Industries Ltd in India and in France. He also has work experience in textiles, sustainable agriculture and retail industry. Core strengths include sustainable sourcing of textile products & supply chain, social auditing at factories & farms, traceability tools, and quality auditing. Amish also has a large working knowledge in sustainable cotton (BCI, Organic, Recycle, Natural Color Cotton, Khaadi) sector. He has planned and managed various projects in India, France and other countries including the initiative for Natural Color Cotton, Recycle cotton and PET project, Organic (cotton & food), Fair Trade and BCI.
My ideology is to “Think Sustainable, save the world and help humanity.”
- Terry HydeAdministrative CoordinatorLander, Wyoming, USATerry HydeAdministrative Coordinator
Terry has previously worked at Dow Corning Wright as an Executive Administrative Assistant and for State Farm where she serviced current customer accounts and generated leads for new prospects. She joined TE in October 2012 as an Executive Assistant. She provides Board, SAT, Platform Task Forces and HR Support as well as assisting Membership and Fund Development. She is a vital member of the Conference Team and handles registration for the event. Terry also publishes the “TE Times” monthly newsletter and is coordinating the TE effort to put systems and standard operating procedures in place.
- Cassie KopeckyAdministrative Assistant - IntegrityAustin, TexasCassie KopeckyAdministrative Assistant - Integrity
Cassie joined Textile Exchange from Barnes & Noble’s District office in Texas, where she spent 3 years as the Administrative Assistant helping to support over a dozen retail locations becoming a key resource in company practices and policies. She also worked on recruiting outreach to non-profit organizations and universities, coordinated the data collection and entry of schools in the Texas area for business development outreach, and tracked loss prevention anomalies through internal software with transaction data. She joined the Textile Exchange Integrity Team in February 2018. She provides support in the revision of the Responsible Down Standard as well as supporting the International Working Group Members. She also assists with data and info management of certification bodies and the brands they represent that use Textile Exchange standards.
- Nicole LambertData AnalystFranceNicole LambertData Analyst
Nicole is working primarily with the Fiber and Materials group, focusing on the annual PFM benchmark and data analysis. Nicole’s background is in environmental health and toxicology and has been working with environmental and health problematics related to industrial emissions and the use of chemicals in goods for 10 years, advising both the private and public sectors.
- Rita LuppinoCommunications and Event ManagerTucson, AZRita LuppinoCommunications and Event Manager
Rita's background encompasses global communications, corporate responsibility and overseeing sustainability and social compliance programs for Fortune 100 apparel brands. She has a strong understanding of the apparel supply chain and brings hands-on experience working with US cotton farms and overseas textile mills and manufacturing facilities. Rita holds a Master of Science in Management and Policy Analysis from the New School in New York City and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Pace University in New York. As the Communication and Events Manager at TE, she will manage all TE events and online platforms, as well as develop cross-functional communication materials.
- Brittany MooreCommunications CoordinatorCheyenne, Wyoming, USABrittany MooreCommunications Coordinator
Upon graduating from the University of Wyoming with a Bachelor’s degree in communications in 2012, Brittany joined Textile Exchange to provide support for the Marketing Communications TEam. In this role, Brittany is responsible for the monthly newsletter, logistical support, and delivery of Textile Exchange’s digital communication.
- Sophia OpperskalskiStrategy & Research SupportBerlin, GermanySophia OpperskalskiStrategy & Research Support
Sophia Opperskalski has almost 10 years of experience in sustainability and textiles. At Textile Exchange, she is part of the fiber and materials team. She supports the development of the market reports and the Preferred Fiber and Materials Benchmark program, amongst other responsibilities. Before joining Textile Exchange, Sophia worked for BSD Consulting where she was involved in projects on sustainability reporting, rankings and strategy. Prior to that, she has developed a B2B online platform to support designers and fashion brands in sourcing sustainable fabrics and was engaged in various further projects related to sustainability and textiles. Sophia is based in Berlin, Germany, and has a M.Sc. in Integrated Natural Resource Management from the Humboldt University in Berlin.
- Stefanie PokorskiIntegrity & Standards CoordinatorOttawa, CanadaStefanie PokorskiIntegrity & Standards Coordinator
Stefanie’s background includes working in communications and graphic design, primarily with non-profit organizations based in the U.S. and abroad. As Integrity and Standards Coordinator at TE, she provides support to the Integrity and Standards team through website management, communications, design, administrative support, and more. Originally from the U.S., Stefanie is currently based in Ottawa, Canada.
- Sharon WhitleyFinancial AdministratorLamesa, Texas, USASharon WhitleyFinancial Administrator
Sharon is knowledgeable in QuickBooks accounting, Peachtree accounting, and Excel programs. Her job for Textile Exchange is primarily bookkeeping - maintaining the accounting records, payroll, preparation of quarterly tax reports, bank accounts and preparations for the yearly audit. Sharon has been involved with organic cotton since 1996 when she started with Organic Essentials, working in all areas for the business. In 2002, she became general manager of Organic Essentials and held that position until the company sold in 2006. As general manager, her job was mainly day-to-day operations. Sharon has been the Financial Administrator for Textile Exchange since 2006.
- Amber YoungFinancial & Program CoordinatorLander, Wyoming, USAAmber YoungFinancial & Program Coordinator
Amber joined TE in 2014 as the Financial & Program Coordinator. She has experience in multiple industries including retail, hospitality, farming and real estate. She has assisted start-ups and worked with all aspects of small businesses. Amber graduated in 2001 from Wyoming University with a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in Finance and a Minor in Economics.
- Stuart AdamsAgricultural Standards AdvisorVancouver, CanadaStuart AdamsAgricultural Standards Advisor
Stuart Adams starting a farming career in the Southwest of Western Australia growing up on a merino sheep farm / grain production operation. In farming, Stuart is known for his pioneering approach to using technology to increase efficiency and lower environmental impacts. In Australia he initiated the development of a sustainable farming program for wool growers, working with Curtin University. Stuart has a strong background in supply chain management, having designed a traceability system to track wool from farm to shelf for the i-merino value chain he created in the late 90’s. As a member of the technical committee for the Responsible Wool Standard, Stuart advises closely on the standard writing, with responsibility for the development of the land management modules. He also takes on the calibration of the auditors, shadowing a number of the audits, and setting qualification criteria.
- Carlotta CataldiSpecial ProjectsBarcelona, SpainCarlotta CataldiSpecial Projects
Carlotta has a Master´s degree in Strategic Leadership towards Sustainability obtained at the Blekinge Institute of Technology of Karlskrona, Sweden. While writing her thesis on Slow Fashion, she acquired different skills and became a professional graphic recorder and a group facilitator. Passionate about spreading awareness and knowledgeable about the best practices in the fashion industry, she also works as an educator in her community and collaborates with companies to help them identify the most efficient and rewarding path towards sustainability.
- Caterina ContiBizconti Inc.New York, NYCaterina ContiBizconti Inc.
Ms. Conti is a private investor and business consultant. She is an accomplished senior executive and counsel with 30 years’ experience in a wide variety of industries. A former member of Board of the AAFA and IAF, Ms. Conti has spearheaded many award-winning initiatives in the areas of operational efficiencies, supply chain transparency, sustainability reporting and communications. During her tenure at Anvil Knitwear, Inc., the company developed TrackMyT.com, ShirtScan(tm) and was awarded Best First Time Report at Ceres-ACCA North American Awards and as a Top Leader of Change in the Sustainability Category by The Foundation for Social Change and UNOP. Anvil’s digital short, Message from Earth: Organic Matters, was shortlisted for the TED Ads Worth Spreading Initiative. Ms. Conti will be consulting for the TE on a part-time basis primarily focusing on consumer engagement.
- Betty Cortina-WeissAmbassadorFlorida and New YorkBetty Cortina-WeissAmbassador
Betty is a South Florida- and New York City-based strategic communications and content expert. She has worked for and managed creative teams and projects at some the country’s top media properties, including People, Entertainment Weekly, O, The Oprah Magazine, Latina, NBC and more. She has created content for print and video platforms, and worked extensively in sustainability and corporate responsibility communications. She worked on the creation of Anvil Knitwear’s award-winning TrackMyT website, a digital tool that traced children’s apparel, from farm all the way to consumer. She developed all of its original content and guided its creative direction. In addition, she was instrumental in the production of Anvil’s award-winning CSR report. She is currently working with Textile Exchange on the development of key strategic marketing and communications messages, and an overall strategic communications plan for 2018 and beyond, including branded content and an editorial calendar. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the University of Florida, and an Associates Degree in Culinary Science from Johnson & Wales.
- Brent CrosslandSustainable Cotton ProgramsValencia, California, USABrent CrosslandSustainable Cotton Programs
Brent has worked in the plant science industry for the past 37 years with experience in crop protection, product development and launch, seed production and the global textile supply chain. He has held past positions with academia, independent consulting, product development and research and sales/marketing in the cotton industry. For the past 15 years, Brent has also been involved with the downstream market development of FiberMax and Stoneville cotton fiber for the apparel and home furnishings industry. A well-known expert on the cotton supply chain, Brent has presented on sustainable initiatives to many world cotton organizations. He is a past recipient of the Bayer CropScience Luminary award for distinguished achievement and the “You Can’t Pick Better” award for initiatives in the cotton seed business. Brent holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Texas A&M University and a Master’s of Agriculture degree in Plant Science from West Texas A&M University.
- Atila ErtemTE Ambassador, TurkeyIzmir, TurkeyAtila ErtemTE Ambassador, Turkey
Atilla has been an Organic Pioneer in Turkey since 1986 and started growing organic cotton in 1989. Since then he has been somewhere in organic cotton & textile as consultant, buyer, and project expert in SEA. Atiala’s path crossed with TE in 2010 and he has been trying to help in the Turkish organic cotton & textile sector on behalf of TE as country ambassador.
- Silvio MoraesAmbassador Latin AmericaPort Alegre, BrazilSilvio MoraesAmbassador Latin America
Silvio studied agronomy at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, acquiring a master's degree in soil science and microbiology. Still in college, he met the pioneer ecologist José Lutzenberger, with whom he began his professional career and has developed numerous projects in the field of sustainability. For over 25 years he develops consulting and audit activities for organic farming projects and environmental management systems for various companies in Latin America.
- Simone SeislSpecial ProjectsFreiburg, GermanySimone SeislSpecial Projects
Simone studied design and textile engineering in Austria and went for a career in the global fashion and sporting goods industry, held various positions in design, product management, marketing and buying departments, also at the headquarter of adidas. In 2008 she decided to only focus on sustainability topics within the industry, first working as a consultant at the Dutch NGO Made-by, then as head of marketing and sales at Remei AG in Switzerland. She has expertise in leading CR initiatives on brand level, in supply chain transformation and integrity, product innovation and best-practise marketing and communication. Based in Freiburg, Germany, she currently works as a consultant for individual as well as multi-stakeholder projects.
- Silvère TovignanAmbassador AfricaAbomey-Calavi, BeninSilvère TovignanAmbassador Africa
Silvère has been the Regional Director in Africa since 2006. Before joining Textile Exchange, he completed his PhD at Giessen University in Germany where he wrote a dissertation on “Gender perspectives in the adoption of organic cotton in Benin: a farm household modeling approach.” In Benin, he has been involved in many socioeconomic research programs tackling issues related to small scale farmers’ income and well-being. He joined OBEPAB (a Beninese NGO promoting organic farming) a member organization of the worldwide Pesticide Action Network (PAN) in 1998 where, for 4 years, he coordinated an information and training program on organic farming.
- Allen YouAmbassador ChinaBeijing, ChinaAllen YouAmbassador China
My name is Allen You. I come from the capital city of China, Beijing. I have more than 8 years of experience working in textile testing and the certification sector with local, international textile and agriculture organizations. He previously worked at Oeko-Tex, based in China, in TESTEX and Hohenstein, aiming at eco-textile idea promotion. During this period, I communicated with all kind of textile companies and buying offices in China and I know the China textile industry well. After that, I joined ECOCERT for organic cotton and the agriculture sector. Through visiting organic cotton farmers, I understand the organic cotton situation in China deeply, and am lucky to have been cooperating with TE from 2012. I am also working in the organic agriculture and textile industry in a local organization in China.
- Valentina ZarewAmbassador, Australia & New ZealandSydney, AustraliaValentina ZarewAmbassador, Australia & New Zealand
A creative entrepreneur with a career background in consumer behavior, marketing communications and sustainability, Valentina is focused on creating collaboration within the industry in the aim of igniting innovation for positive social and environmental change. Her work with Textile Exchange as the local ambassador is focused on industry engagement, education and international collaboration to foster positive transformation within the textile supply chain.