Darcy Winslow

Senior Lecturer, MIT Leadership Center

Darcy Winslow

Darcy Winslow is a Senior Lecturer in the MIT Leadership Center at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

Winslow has been a pioneer and an active practitioner of sustainability frameworks and principles, exploring and experimenting with the application of these to all aspects of business. She worked at Nike, Inc. for more than 20 years and held several senior management positions within the business.  Most recently, Winslow served as general manager for Nike’s Global Women’s Fitness Business and as senior advisor to the Nike Foundation, which seeks to empower disadvantaged girls, ages 10 to 19 years, through poverty alleviation and creating economic livelihood opportunities. In 1999, Winslow spearheaded a major sustainability initiative at Nike to ensure that the creation of the world’s most recognizable brand of athletic-wear was also the most socially responsible and environmentally friendly. Winslow and her team “inserted sustainability into the heart of what Nike does” with a series of real-world changes that instituted design, engineering, and production changes across the entire value chain.

As one of the foremost hands-on experts on the process of steering a large and successful company toward more environmental and financial sustainability, she speaks with passion about the innovative practices that can turn a company doing business-as-usual into a company that leads the way in corporate social responsibility. In her years at Nike, she led several company-wide initiatives, including a holistic business re-alignment effort within the Nike brand. Her dedicated work in sustainability was in part inspired by her early trips to Nike contract factories around the world, where she learned firsthand about the health of workers and the production practices that could be improved. As a result of her work and setting their 2020 goals in 1999, Nike is striving to eliminate all aspects of waste and harmful substances, and is working to ensure their products and materials are captured in closed loop systems.

A program director for Willamette University’s Executive Development Sustainable Enterprise Program, Winslow’s message is driven by the need to develop and implement more environmentally and socially sustainable business strategies across an organization. She is the founder of Designs for a Sustainable World Collective, LLC, a firm that focuses on the development of practical yet aggressive strategies for organizations to create and adopt more sustainable and ultimately regenerative business practices. Winslow recently participated in the 2009 Inspire Antarctic Expedition, hosted by British Petroleum and led by polar explorer, Robert Swan. She played a vital role in helping to shape the program activities and in bringing depth and experience to the dialogue regarding climate change and the growing vulnerability of natural resources and ecosystems. The expedition created a unique opportunity to engage climate scientists, business leaders, youth leaders, and polar experts to come together in unprecedented collaboration to better understand the roles we play as individual citizens, as members of corporations and universities, and as active community leaders. The lessons, stories, projects and images from this expedition are profound and transformational. She continues to work with Swan and his 2041 team on upcoming expeditions.

Winslow currently serves on the board of advisors for the National Climate Prosperity Board, World Pulse Media/Pulse Wire; Greenopolis; the Cloud Institute for Sustainability Education, and the Council for Responsible Sport. She serves on the board of directors for Ziba Design, Inc., and is an active member of the Society for Organizational Learning and Sustainability Consortium.

Winslow holds a BS in exercise science from Murray State University, an MS in sports medicine from Connecticut State University and an MS in exercise physiology, kinesiology, and biomechanics from Portland State University. She is also a 2003 graduate of the Stanford Executive Program. 

General Expertise: Change management; Climate change; Consumer behavior; Corporate social responsibility; Emissions trading; Environment; Executive education; Experimental design; Future of work; Global warming; Green industries; Leadership; Managing change; Marketing; Non-profits / Nonprofits; Organizational culture; Product development; Sustainability; United States


For more background on this faculty member's research and academic initiatives, please visit the MIT Sloan faculty directory.

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