Dinner in New York City recognizes innovative leaders of Ford Foundation and Royal DSM; featured speakers President Felipe Calderón, Christiana Figueres and Tony West

WASHINGTON (September 29)—World Resources Institute (WRI) is celebrating 35 years of impact at its biennial Courage to Lead dinner honoring Darren Walker, President, Ford Foundation, and Feike Sijbesma, Chairman and CEO, Royal DSM, on Thursday, October 12 at Cipriani 25 Broadway in New York City. President Felipe Calderón, former President of Mexico, Christiana Figueres, former Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC and one of the vital players in the creation of the Paris Agreement, and Tony West, General Counsel of PepsiCo and former U.S. Associate Attorney General, are featured speakers.

Co-chairs for the event are Stephen M. Ross, Chairman and Founder, Related Companies; Afsaneh M. Beschloss, Founder and CEO, The Rock Creek Group; and James A. Harmon, Chairman, Caravel Management LLC. Andrew Steer, WRI President & CEO, will highlight the transformative solutions the honorees have pioneered to protect the planet and improve people’s lives.

Ford Foundation is one of the world’s leading philanthropies. Under Darren Walker, Ford is putting all its tools to work, including $1 billion from its endowment over the next 10 years toward Mission-Related Investments, including the drivers of inequality. This bold move seeks to spur more foundations to do the same and help the capital markets become accelerators of justice and fairness.

Royal DSM, originally a state-owned coal company, is a Dutch multinational corporation now active in the fields of health, nutrition and materials. Royal DSM ranks #2 on Fortune’s annual Change the World list and its Chairman and CEO Feike Sijbesma is a global leader on climate action and malnutrition. Mr. Sijbesma is Climate Leader for the World Bank and co-chairs the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition. In addition, he co-leads the CEO Climate Alliance of the World Economic Forum of over 60 companies catalyzing corporate action to reduce GHG emissions and help drive the global transition to a low-carbon, climate resilient economy.

WRI’s Courage to Lead events honor leaders and organizations that share WRI’s dedication to tackling today’s urgent global environment and economic development challenges. The dinner will raise funds to advance WRI’s mission of turning big ideas into action on climate change, energy, food, forests, water and sustainable cities.

There will be a photo opportunity at the event.

All media must RSVP to ally.friedman@wri.org

WRI’s Courage to Lead 35th Anniversary Dinner


  • Darren Walker, President, Ford Foundation (honoree)
  • Feike Sijbesma, Chairman and CEO, Royal DSM (honoree)
  • President Felipe Calderón, Former President of Mexico; Honorary Chair, Global Commission on the Economy and Climate; and WRI Board Director (featured speaker)
  • Christiana Figueres, Former Executive Secretary, UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and WRI Board Director (featured speaker)
  • Tony West, General Counsel, PepsiCo and Former Associate Attorney General, U.S. Department of Justice (featured speaker)
  • Afsaneh M. Beschloss, Founder and CEO, The Rock Creek Group and WRI Board Director (co-chair)
  • James A. Harmon, Chairman, Caravel Management LLC and Chairman, WRI Board of Directors (co-chair)
  • Stephen M. Ross, Chairman and Founder, Related Companies and WRI Board Director (co-chair)
  • Andrew Steer, President & CEO, WRI

Thursday, October 12, 2017
6:30 – 9:30 p.m. EDT

25 Broadway
New York, NY 10004

All media must RSVP ahead of time to Ally Friedman, ally.friedman@wri.org, (202) 279-7719