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Aimée Christensen

Aimée Christensen

Chief Executive Officer, Christensen Global Strategies

Titles

  • Executive Director, Sun Valley Institute
  • Chief Executive Officer, Christensen Global Strategies
  • Member, Board of Directors of the Julie Ann Wrigley Global Institute of Sustainability at ASU
  • Member, Board of Directors, EnerBlue

Biography

Aimée Christensen is the executive director of the Sun Valley Institute, advancing policy leadership, public engagement and targeted investments to ensure economic prosperity, environmental protection and human wellbeing in its home community of Idaho’s Wood River Valley and to serve as a resource for communities everywhere. She is also CEO of Christensen Global Strategies, which she founded in 2005, advising corporations, investors, governments and organizations worldwide. Her clients have included Autodesk, the Clinton Global Initiative, Duke Energy, FEMSA, the Global Ocean Commission, Microsoft, Ogilvy, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Swiss Re, The Elders, the Global Ocean Commission, the United Nations Foundation and Virgin.

She has over two decades’ experience in policy, law, investment, and philanthropy – including with the World Bank, Baker & McKenzie, Google and the U.S. Department of Energy, where she began her career, negotiating the first U.S. bilateral climate change agreement (1994 with Costa Rica) and negotiating and managing the first regional sustainable energy agenda for the Summit of the Americas (1994). At Google, she guided the company’s first climate change initiatives, including a commitment to carbon neutrality, successfully lobbying for passage of California’s climate change legislation, and launching the first climate project for Google.org to accelerate the electrification of transportation.

In 2012, she served as special adviser to the UN Secretary General's high-level group on Sustainable Energy for All. In 2010 and 2011, she was the founding program chair of the World Climate Summit, gathering over 800 business leaders to act on climate. She has advised Virgin Unite in shaping three of Sir Richard Branson’s initiatives: The Elders, The Carbon War Room and The B Team. In 2009 she moved home to Sun Valley, Idaho, for family and to manage their investments, including several solar energy projects and funds. She is a also member of Divest-Invest, aligning her family’s investments with their values. She wrote the first university endowment investment policy on climate change, adopted by the Stanford University Board of Trustees in 1999.

Christensen is often requested to serve as a speaker or moderator, including: at the Milken Institute Global Conference, chairing the “Saving the World From Us: Strategies for Conservation” discussion with Academy Award-winning director and producer Kathryn Bigelow, conservationists David Bonderman, Philippe Cousteau and Thomas Kaplan; speaking on the “Economic Implications of Climate Change” panel with the Ambassador of France to the United States, the CEO of the Nature Conservancy and the Editor-in-Chief of National Geographic; at the Milken Institute Global Conference (April 2015), chairing the “How Fast Can Small Grow? The Case for Solar Power” discussion at the Skoll World Forum in Oxford (April 2015); and in Paris – during the UN COP21 – at the UN Foundation’s Earth to Paris event, chairing a conversation among Paul Bunje, Lead Energy & Environment, XPRIZE, John Woolard, VP of Energy, Google and Adrian Grenier – actor, activist & DELL Social Good Advocate (December 2016).

For her ongoing environmental leadership, in April 2011, the Hillary Institute of International Leadership’s international board chose Christensen as its third global laureate for exceptional leadership on Climate Change Solutions. In 2010, she was awarded an Aspen Institute Catto Environmental Leadership Fellowship. She spoke on energy issues at the Democratic National Convention in Denver in 2008, where she was also named an “emerging leader” by the New Leaders Council. She has a BA from Smith College and a JD from Stanford Law School.

Education

  • JD, Stanford Law School
  • BA, Smith College