Creating a world with exceptional quality of life where communities thrive in a healthy environment and work together to build a vibrant, resilient economy.
To inspire and empower sustainability leadership in our communities that is well understood, measured and credible.
We operate with integrity in the work we produce, transparency in how we do it, global alignment with industry standards & best practices and ensure inclusivity in all we do.
We work with communities to help them evaluate their actions, produce quantifiable impacts and communicate credible results.
We connect community groups and businesses to foster knowledge sharing, generate collaborative opportunities and empower leadership.
Inspiring the development of future leaders by engaging youth and the community.
Sustainability Leadership was originally launched as Sustainable Hamilton in June 2011 by Sandi Stride with the help of a Founding Board of Directors and small team of volunteers. One of the first actions was to recruit a cross-sectoral advisory committee to gain input from sustainability experts in academia, municipal & provincial government, NGOs, and businesses large & small.
We created and launched a membership based program called the Sustainable Hamilton Report Initiative, helping local businesses measure their Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions and develop Sustainability Reports. To develop these Sustainability Reports, we use the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), the world standard in corporate sustainability reporting known for its world-wide acceptance and suitability for a wide range of organisations and sectors.
By the end of 2014 it had become evident that there was a growing interest in Burlington as well, so the decision was made to re-brand as Sustainable Hamilton Burlington (SHB).
In January of 2016, our organisation joined Green Economy Canada which gave us access to extensive capacity-building resources and networking while retaining our own unique value proposition. Within a few months, we also added B Lab and Waste reductions measurement streams to our program. This offered diverse opportunities for businesses to begin their sustainability journey. To reflect these changes, the Sustainable Hamilton Report Initiative became known as the Sustainable Business Initiative (SBI).
In 2017, our founder Sandi Stride moved on from her role with SHB to take over as the inaugural Executive Director of the Centre for Climate Change Management (CCCM) at Mohawk College. A collaboration between Mohawk College, the City of Hamilton, the City of Burlington and Sustainable Hamilton Burlington, the CCCM was designed to support action on carbon emissions reduction and accelerate transformation to a low carbon economy.
In 2018, in partnership with the City of Hamilton, we developed the Business Climate Action Toolkit (BCAT), a free online resource-hub, equipping businesses with sector-specific resources, case studies, tools and support services to facilitate action on climate change opportunities and risks.
When the Covid-19 pandemic hit in early 2020, newly appointed Executive Director Rafiq Dhanji led the development of a new strategy to evolve the Sustainable Business Initiative and address the social distancing restrictions required by the pandemic. Drawing upon research and conversations with members and the community, we launched the Sustainability Leadership Program (SLP) in September 2020. The launch was supported by a new brand, Sustainability Leadership, and a new website. The transition to an entirely virtual operating model offered more accessibility to sustainability resources, support and events for our network in the recently changing social climate. The organisation consequently expanded into the Halton and Niagara regions. As of 2022, Sustainability Leadership further expanded to service the areas of Peel, Brant and Brantford.
The need for climate action is more clear than ever – and businesses can, should, and need to be part of that action if we are to get to the sustainable future we all want to see. Sustainability Leadership is part of a network of Green Economy Hubs across Canada supporting networks of businesses to set and achieve sustainability targets. Together, we’re demonstrating a more sustainable economy is possible.