Board Spotlight: Zem Spire Joaquin
Sitting down with Global Green USA Board of Directors Secretary, Zem Spire Joaquin, Entrepreneur & Activist.
10 years ago, you joined the Board of Global Green USA. What inspired you to get involved?
I had two children suffering from severe asthma, and after trying everything else, I set out to a healthy home for them. I found Global Green to be the best resource and wanted to help other families get access to better materials and information, especially if they couldn’t afford to hire someone to assist them. I was impressed with the work Matt Petersen and his dedicated team were doing at Global Green USA, and was also in awe of the vision President Gorbachev and Diane Mayer Simon had for Green Cross International.
As the founder of Ecofabulous.com and now Editor-at-Large of Home & Lifestyle for the Huffington Post, you know "eco-chic!" How do you define that concept, or way of life?
Jordan Harris, the same board member that recruited me to join Global Green, was the genius who introduced me to the term “eco-chic,” but I own the URL. Many years ago I was the eco-editor of House and Garden Magazine, which had the tagline, “for the well-lived life.” The magazine was my visual muse, but a life surrounded by gorgeous things that could be making you and the planet sick just didn’t seem well-lived to me. Eco-chic is about really living well! It is about true luxury. Examples are the Tesla, Jennifer Dawes recycled gold jewelry, Stella McCartney dresses, Tatcha skincare, Simon + Krull bags, Kenneth Cobonpue furniture, and the new Mercedes Electric B-Class vehicle, which I have just signed on to be the spokesperson for! Ecofabulous is more inclusive, though. A toothbrush can be considered fabulous but is unlikely to be considered chic (there are exceptions, of course).
In addition to joining the board, you also began hosting the Gorgeous & Green Gala, one of Global Green USA's four title events. How has the event evolved over the years?
The first year I just set out to introduce Global Green’s work to San Francisco and many of my amazing friends there. It was met with open arms, wallets and minds. I realized that the event could also be a platform to showcase the wonderful products that I was writing about on Ecofabulous. I wanted people to see that a healthy lifestyle did not have to be devoid of…well, style! Nadine Weil and Christopher Bently then stepped up to help what would become one of the most revered eco-events in the country. Lily Achatz produces a fashion show to rival Paris, if Paris was conscious (I hope that it will be in the future!).
What is in store for guests at the 10-year celebration of Gorgeous & Green this year?
There are so many things to look forward to at our anniversary Gorgeous & Green Gala this year! We have themed the “green tie” event Emerald City, with a guest performance from Broadway star Shoshana Bean, most known for playing Elphaba in Wicked. There will be a delicious -course meal by celebrity chefs Dominique Creen (Atelier Crenn), Parke Ulrich (Epic Roast House and Waterbar), and Ethan Howard (Cavallo Point). The auction will feature many phenomenal items, including a painting by renowned artist Zio Ziegler, and guests will have access to an exclusive gifting suite. You don’t want to miss Gorgeous & Green this year!
For more Gorgeous & Green Gala information, and to purchase tickets, click here!