What are you doing now that would be interesting to LiS Students?
“I think I’m doing two things that might be interesting: In my position in mortgage servicing, I am preventing foreclosure, maintaining financial stability in communities- watching out for warning signs.
I am also the Co-founder and President of the sustainable magazine, The Burbon Review.”
Tell us about your experience in the fledgling Leaders in Sustainability Program:
“You know I came out of the business background and I tried to bring a business mindset to it…and [LiS] helped me to think about how to do good and do well.”
“And it helped me to think about a given situation from a variety of standpoints. As we talked about development patterns and real estate, other students in my class also brought up issues in public health…people having to get in the car and drive for x number of miles negative environmental as well as health impacts.”
“for me it was a learning lab where I could explore some key concepts and a framework for how to think about how does policy interact with urban planning, interact with business, and then how does that interact with, say, medicine…and along all of those lenses, how should we think about sustainability and…in the end how do you apply that and go out into the world and be a leader in the things you do.”
Tell us what you think leadership in sustainability means?
“Leadership is the art of influencing others either directly or indirectly. And in my case, I’m fortunate, I have a fairly large sandbox to play with in bank of America and so inside bank of America, I’ve had the opportunity to help develop programs that are helping to solve America’s housing crisis. One out of every 6 mortgages is touched by bank of America. And homeowners that are facing disclosure can benefit from a short sale….and so its my job to lead large teams of people that facilitate that transaction…go out and actually try to find people proactively. So, the leaders in sustainability program I think helped me to…to be a multi-dimensional thinker in my field while I’m trying to help people avoid foreclosure [a good thing for banks]….that’s not typically considered a “sustainable” thing, but there’s a unique intersection of benefits, right now, helping people avoid foreclosure, even for the bank and even for the mortgage assessors. And on helping people with this he said: yeah, I totally agree. I can say that as an alumni of Leaders in Sustainability, I apply those frameworks to my work at the bank, where I help people to avoid foreclosure.”
As for my work with The Burbon Review, I started a company that from day one was a social mission. It’s a social entrepreneurship project. And a magazine isn’t typically thought of as a sustainable business practice, but we operate under the pillars of sustainability (both economic and environmental), corporate social responsibility, and philanthropy. Our work is dedicated to supporting and sustaining the Burbon industry and the water and land resources that are essential to making Burbon.”
From their website (The Burbon Review):
“At The Bourbon Review, we believe that business practices impose externalities – both positive and negative – on the world at large. It is our intention to be a constantly improving ethical brand. The first step to being an ethical brand is ensuring transparency and values. The Bourbon Review will publish an annual sustainability report every summer in which we will detail our internal audit of meeting our three pillars of social responsibility: volunteerism, donations, and pro bono advertising. Our authenticity and transparency are genuine and we will prove it to all the stakeholders of the bourbon industry.”
Bob Eidson, MBA, LiS Class of 2009
SVP Mortgage Servicing Executive, for Bank of America Housing