The Portland Sports & Sustainability Symposium at the Portland Trail Blazers’ Moda Center will convene regional professional and collegiate sports teams and venues, concessionaires, business and public leaders, and athletes to explore how the industry can make plays to advance healthier, more sustainable communities.

Programming will focus on five of our key program areas: Venues, Food, Waste, Water, and Procurement. The content will highlight expert speaker panels, with ample time for networking and engaging with event attendees. The event will feature an intimate ‘Vendor Showcase’ highlighting select services and products from event sponsors.

Speakers are being confirmed on a daily basis, check back regularly to see our newest additions!

Kevin Wilhelm | CEO, Sustainable Business Consulting

Kevin Wilhelm is the CEO of Sustainable Business Consulting and is one of the world’s pre-eminent business consultants in the field of sustainability and climate change.Kevin has worked with over 150+ companies including Amazon, Nordstrom, REI, Expedia, Alaska Airlines, Whole Foods, and the Seattle Sounders of MLS. Kevin is also thought leader in the is field, having written multiple acclaimed books in this field including: Return on Sustainability: How Business Can Increase Profitability & Address Climate Change and the guide to successful implementation in Making Sustainability Stick. He understands the unique challenges of implementing sustainability in sports, as prior to trying to save the planet, Kevin’s sports career included stops at the Seattle Mariners and as a general manager of the Minnesota Thunder – now MN United of MLS.

Elaine Aye | Regional Manager, RWDI

Elaine is a widely respected sustainability consultant and strategist focused on building performance, wellness, equity and resiliency. Her passion is to move organizations towards a more sustainable future, helping achieve,performance and social responsibility goals. She listens to diverse stakeholder groups with an intuitive ear, discerns challenges, facilitates corporate visioning sessions, and develops plans and protocols to implement strategies for desired outcomes. A strategic thinker and engaging communicator, Elaine’s approach to facilitating project teams results in long-term client success – whether that means achieving certification, educating staff, or enhancing building performance through materials, water and energy efficiency. Driven by a desire to protect the environment, Elaine addresses critical issues facing the built environment – helping achieve sustainability and equity one building or organization at a time.

Keoki Kakigi | Sustainability Operations Manager, Portland Trail Blazers

Keoki Kakigi is the Sustainability Operations Manager for the Portland Trail Blazers at The Rose Quarter. He is dedicated to improving the day-to-day operational efficiency across energy, water, waste, transportation, and food for the campus as well assisting in sustainability CSR and business operations. Prior to joining Rip City, Keoki worked in the Environmental Assessments team at the Walt Disney Company, performing greenhouse gas, water, and waste inventories for over 500 facilities on a quarterly basis via data analytics and corporate communication. Originally born and raised on the island of Guam, Keoki is dedicated to utilizing the power of entertainment and sports to promote environmental activism that prevents sea-level rises from climate change so his island doesn’t go underwater in a few centuries!

Lyle Peters | Vice President of Sales, GreenDrop

Lyle is Vice President of Sales for GreenDrop which creates and markets recycling stations that empower employees and guests to accurately self-sort waste streams to reduce landfill waste.

GreenDrop is revolutionizing waste stream diversion and making a difference in the future of our planet by promoting the use of the GreenDrop Recycling Stations as the proven cornerstone for every facility’s waste diversion initiative with 88-gallon capacity recycling stations made from recycled content and durable stations that are 100% recyclable at end-of-life.

Kevin Scribner | Salmon Safe & Slow Food Nation

Kevin Scribner has extensive experience in natural resource planning and management, community cultural development, alternative food systems, ecological restoration and commercial fishing. Kevin commercially fished for salmon in the Pacific Northwest and Bristol Bay, Alaska from 1976 to 1996. He is developing Forever Wild Seafood, an e-commerce seafood business, and its companion non-profit, the Forever Wild Fund. Kevin is a volunteer with the nation-wide Slow Fish USA movement, and serves on the Slow Food USA Policy Steering Committee and the Slow Food Equity, Inclusion and Justice (EIJ) Working Group, which developed the EIJ Manifesto. Kevin serves on the Policy Council of the Marine Fish Conservation Network, and works with Salmon-Safe, a third-party certifier of fish-supporting land management practices. Kevin represents Salmon-Safe on the Columbia Basin Partnership Task Force, serving alongside representatives from many Pacific Northwest Tribes. Kevin calls Walla Walla, Washington, home.

Bob Akers | Enterprise Director, e-Stewards

In the role of e-Stewards Enterprise Director, Bob works with corporations, organizations, government and Certified e-Steward recyclers to develop opportunity. Previously, he worked in the electronics recycling industry for 13 years, most recently as executive director of the not-for-profit Surplus Exchange in Kansas City, Mo., where he guided his team to become an early pledged e-Stewards company, and successfully completed a total of eight e-Stewards certification audits. He served on the e-Stewards Leadership Council from its inception. Bob is proud to have signed the City of Kansas City, Mo., as an e-Stewards Enterprise in 2015 and has worked with the city to develop their “ConnectHome” program, which provides refurbished computers and internet access to residents in public housing. Bob is married with two grown kids, and holds a degree from the University of Kansas.

Christa Stout | VP of Social Responsibility, Portland Trail Blazers & Executive Director, Trail Blazers Foundation

Christa Stout, Vice President of Social Responsibility and Executive Director of the Trail Blazers Foundation, oversees the Trail Blazers’ social and environmental impact, fan development, and diversity, equity and inclusion work for the Trail Blazers. Last year, Stout was selected to the Portland Business Journal 2018 Forty Under 40 list for her achievements in leading the Trail Blazers’ Social Responsibility efforts and was invited to speak at the South by Southwest Conference on the company’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. Prior to joining the Trail Blazers in February of 2014, Stout led the Portland Timbers Community Relations department starting in 2011. Stout gained international development experience in sport and social change in South Africa, Australia, Central and South America, and Europe prior to moving back to her hometown, Portland, in 2011. Stout holds an MBA in international business from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey and is also a graduate of Connecticut College with a Bachelor of Arts degree. She serves on the Latino Network board and in her free time enjoys listening to audio books, learning new skills (currently: boxing and ukulele) and going on adventures with her husband and two daughters.

Roger McClendon | Executive Director, Green Sports Alliance

Roger is a results-driven executive with deep global experience in the development and deployment of engineering innovation and sustainability/supply-chain management strategies for domestic and international operations. As the first-ever Chief Sustainability Officer for Yum! Brands, Inc., Roger created corporate social responsibility strategies, global environmental policies and restaurant sustainability development standards and implemented them company-wide, making the company the second largest developer of green restaurants in the world. Earlier at Yum!, Roger was Senior Director YUM Global Engineering and Facilities, Restaurant Excellence for Yum Restaurants Global – A&W, KFC, Long John Silvers, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, responsible for developing the standards, strategies and tactics to ensure global quality standards, engineering standards and operational standards. Roger holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer & Electrical Engineering from the University of Cincinnati.

Garrett Wong | Member Services Manager, Green Sports Alliance

A sustainability change maker and sports aficionado, Garrett Wong joins the Green Sports Alliance assuming the role of Member Services Manager with a bright mind and optimistic personality. Growing up in the heart of the Bay Area, he was able to witness firsthand the positive impact that sustainable action can have on a community.

After graduating from Arizona State University’s School of Sustainability, he led the Sustainability Committee for the 2017 Final Four in achieving the Council of Responsible Sport’s Evergreen Certification. Between training for his next marathon and improving upon his amateur photography skills, Garrett can be found volunteering his time at the local community garden or attending an art show with his colleagues. He is beyond ecstatic to begin working alongside our members to bolster their sustainability programs and push their brand to new heights.

Jessica Barnes Helms | Senior Executive Chef, RoseQuarter and Providence Park

Jessica joined Levy Restaurants as Executive Chef at the RoseQuarter in November of 2014. Jessica has two culinary degrees from the Culinary Institute of America, one in the culinary arts and one in baking and pastry.  She is originally from Napa Valley, California and is classically French trained.  Jessica began her culinary career in Dublin, Ireland at the Four Seasons Hotel in Ballsbridge. From Ireland, Jessica moved to London, England to continue her career with the Four Seasons. After returning to California to become the Executive Sous Chef for Bettina Rouas, at Angele Restaurant and Bar, Jessica began a seven year employment with Delaware North Companies. In her DNC career, Jessica has been the Premium Club Chef at The Great American Ballpark, home of the Cincinnati Reds, the Executive Chef at Busch Stadium, home of the 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals, and Executive Sous Chef at CenturyLink Stadium, home of the 2014 Superbowl Champion Seattle Seahawks. Jessica also appeared on Season 11 of Chopped on the Food Network. Jessica’s husband Jeff is a talented Ice Carver, and they have a 5-year-old son named Kevin. In her free time, she enjoys spending time on their acre farm in Newberg, Oregon.

Evan Ramsey | Senior Director, Renewable Energy Group, Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF)

Evan is a specialist in renewable energy systems and leads the project development and management activities for the Renewable Energy Group, which advances renewables in the Northwest with innovative and creative solutions. Evan has managed hundreds of small scale renewable projects for a wide array of clients, from Fortune 500 businesses to public universities. At BEF, Evan leads the planning, management and development activities for the Renewable Energy Group. Work includes low-income solar, community shared solar, career connected clean energy education,  low-impact hydro, renewable hydrogen, voluntary green power programs and utility consulting. Evan is an accredited solar installation professional certified by the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners.”

Emma Riley | Director of Strategic Partnerships, Lonely Whale

Emma Riley is the director of strategic partnerships of award-winning Lonely Whale, an incubator for courageous ideas that drive impactful, market-based change on behalf of our ocean. In her role, Emma serves as a brand strategist focused on building cross-industry and cross-culture partnerships and spearheading radically collaborative efforts that strengthen Lonely Whale’s global presence and impact.

Her pivotal role in the development and implementation of Lonely Whale’s Strawless Ocean, a campaign that takes action against plastic pollution starting with the plastic straw, triggered both traditional and social media amplification that catapulted the campaign to a worldwide movement. Strawless in Seattle, a sub-campaign of Strawless Ocean, resulted in the permanent removal of more than 2.5 million plastic straws in Seattle in just one month while also ushering in policy change in Seattle that gave rise to a global policy movement against single-use plastic straws. Emma continues to expand and drive the Strawless Ocean initiative for Lonely Whale by working with brands such as Live Nation, AEG, Major League Baseball, The Edition Hotels, Soho House Global, Bacardi Limited and more.

Anne Pernick | Reducing Consumption Coordinator, Environmental Paper Network

Anne joined the EPN team in 2017. Anne works closely with staff and member organizations on efforts to achieve reductions in the consumption of wasteful, unwelcome and high volume paper products.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Yale University and a master’s degree in biology from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Sara Hoversten | Director of Corporate Partnerships, Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF)

Sara cultivates, maintains and expands partnerships that help advance the impact of BEF’s mission. Her role is focused on partnerships and stakeholder engagement on partnerships and stakeholder engagement around corporate environmental water stewardship and clean energy career-connected education programming. Prior to joining BEF, Sara was the Director of Operations at the Green Sports Alliance. In this role, she maintained external and internal facing responsibilities ranging from business development, program strategy and project management to business operations and human resources, and produced the annual Green Sports Alliance Summit. Throughout her career, Sara has served in different capacities in community development, impact investing, sustainability and marketing strategy consulting. She received her M.B.A. in Sustainable Business Practices from the University of Oregon, and graduated summa cum laude from the University of Wyoming with a B.S. in Marketing.

How to contact us


Office mailing address:
421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 450
Portland, OR 97204

Phone number: