True Nature with Paul Hawken

Discover radical new ways to do business that align with your values
Learn how to engage in regenerative business with author Paul Hawken
Unite in positive action to restore our ecology
Tap-in to nature’s wisdom


Our speakers

(See bios below)

Our vision

Our True Nature is to embrace and learn from the natural world.


True Nature is an event for social entrepreneurs, corporate leaders, stewards and creators who are shaping a different kind of future, one that embraces and learns from the natural world. This day of learning and inspiration is an opportunity to connect and remind ourselves of WHY regenerative business matters.

During this sweltering summer, the hottest in modern human history, it’s hard to ignore the impacts of climate change and the sheer power of nature. We are dealing with the extremes of flash flooding, scorching droughts and forest fires. Meanwhile, each of us struggles with what we can do in our personal and professional lives to mitigate and reverse the effects of climate change on our societies and ecosystems.

What is called for is a radical change in the way we live, do business and interact with each other and the Earth. The good news is that in a very important way this change is natural and easy. Mother nature contains at her very essence the ability to heal and regenerate. What if she was a the model for all human activity? What if we listened to her teachings and expressed them in the way we live, act, conduct business and organize society? What kind of world would we create?

Our intention with True Nature is to create a clearing for rich conversations that will inspire us into new ways of living and acting. We are bringing together some of the most forward thinking business leaders, scientists and visionaries as a catalyst for those conversations. But ultimately this event is about YOU and what you want to share and create with your community. Please join us for this special event and tap into Nature’s Wisdom. 


When: Thursday September 12th, 1 – 7pm

Where: Fernbank Museum Auditorium, 767 Clifton Road, Atlanta

Tickets $123.50

The event will be held at the spectacular Fernbank Museum and Forest.

What’s included

Welcome and Opening with Cathy Key from World Tree

Wisdom of the Forest Workshop with Elaine Dinos from Kindred Lane

Nature Based Thinking with Nicole Miller, Managing Director, Biomimicry 3.8

Always a Better Way Trailer & Talk with Nathan Havey, Havey Pro

Playing a Bigger Game: An Inclusive Conversation About the Environment, Ovie Mughelli

Eco – Speakeasy: Storytelling & Inspiring Ideas with Robby Astrove, Christina Gibson and Yvonne Druyeh Dodd 

The Way of the Empress, with Wendy Burton, World Tree and Steve Distante, Vanderbilt Financial Group

Drawdown KEYNOTE with Paul Hawken 

Conversation & Cocktails on the Terrace

Speaker biographies

Paul Hawken

Paul Hawken is an environmentalist, entrepreneur, author and activist who has dedicated his life to environmental sustainability and changing the relationship between business and the environment. He is one of the environmental movement’s leading voices, and a pioneering architect of corporate reform with respect to ecological practices. His work includes founding successful, ecologically conscious businesses, writing about the impacts of commerce on living systems, and consulting with heads of state and CEOs on economic development, industrial ecology, and environmental policy.

Paul is Founder of Project Drawdown, a non-profit dedicated to researching when and how global warming can be reversed.  Paul’s book, Drawdown, opened our eyes to ways for aligning business, finance and values to reverse climate change. He inspired a new wave of entrepreneurs and change makers with his practical, down-to-earth model for rebuilding our soils, our forests and our societies.

Paul is one of the best and most highly recognized speakers on the environmental, globally. He has presented to governments and universities all around the world and his style is authentic, entertaining and deeply rooted in science. He has served on the board of many environmental organizations including Point Foundation (publisher of the Whole Earth Catalogs), Center for Plant Conservation, Conservation International, Trust for Public Land, Friends of the Earth, and National Audubon Society.

Paul has received six honorary doctorates. In 2019, the National Council for Science and the Environment granted him a Lifetime Achievement Award on Science, Service, and Leadership.

Wendy Burton

Founder and CEO of World Tree, Wendy is unabashed in her commitment to the three P’s: Planet, People and Profit. Otherwise known as “The Tree Lady” Wendy has spent the last 18 years promoting the economic and environmental benefits of the Empress Splendor Tree.

Wendy, a self-confessed tree-hugger, is living proof that it is possible to combine business savvy with a passion for improving the environment. She believes that everyone can make a difference and that one of the most powerful ways to do that is through investing. The World Tree Eco Tree Program makes it possible for people use their investment dollars to both clean up the air and generate wealth though the planting of the Empress Splendor Tree.

The Empress Splendor, recorded in the Guinness Book of World Records as “officially amazing”, is the fastest growing hardwood tree in the world. It reaches maturity in just 10 years when it can be harvested for lumber. It also sequesters 11 TIMES more carbon than any other tree, making it a highly effective in reducing carbon in the atmosphere.

Wendy has appeared on Oprah, the Connie Sellaca show and Morley Safer’s American Environmental Review. 

Ovie Mughelli

During his nine seasons playing in the National Football League (NFL), Ovie was considered one of the best fullbacks in the NFL, was the first Pro Bowl Fullback in the history of the Atlanta Falcons, and earned All Pro honors twice (Atlanta Falcons and Baltimore Ravens). Ovie is also leading the way in the NFL on sustainability, as the league’s first Eco-Athlete. His uses sports to get people excited about the environment.

Ovie was deeply inspired to use his platform and influence as a professional athlete to address environmental issues when the health of his own children was put at risk by poor air quality. Since then he’s been focused on making sure every voice is at the table when it comes to solving the world’s environmental challenges.

Ovie created the first black environmental hero with the launch of his Hermes Creative Award-winning comic book Gridiron Green in partnership with UNICEF and Comics Uniting Nations.  The comic shows kids from all walks of life that they can be Eco Super-Heroes, and, along the way, they have fun learning about the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and learning key STEM concepts.

The Ovie Mughelli Foundation invites people to team-up with Ovie Mughelli to educate, engage, and inspire a new generation of environmental leaders through sports, entertainment and technology. www.OMFgreen.org 

Elaine Dinos

Elaine Dinos is the Founder of Kindred Lane LLC, a collaborative that sparks healthy growth in people and organizations. Kindred Lane guides clients in purpose advisory, spark coaching and awakening experiences that pave the way for sustainable healthy growth and maximum positive impact. Through Wisdom of the Forest, Elaine shares experiences that cultivate resilience, connection and community. In this work, she looks to the forest for wisdom in how we strengthen our interconnected human root system.

Elaine spent most of her career as a leadership advisor and executive recruiter at Korn Ferry, where she was a Principal in the firm’s Global Consumer Market. Guided by her passion for the conscious business movement, Elaine created Korn Ferry’s Purpose Community which grew to over 200 employees who collaborated in bringing purpose and conscious business practices to clients and the firm. Her research study, People on a Mission (Korn Ferry Institute 2016) is recognized as a groundbreaking study in how authentic purpose inside a company enables business success.

Her three young sons are her greatest teachers and inspiration for living from her roots and remembering to soak up the sun.  

Nicole Miller

Nicole Miller serves as the managing director of Biomimicry 3.8, a certified BCorp and social enterprise dedicated to helping change-makers create a more sustainable world by emulating nature’s designs and core principles. 

Biomimicry methodology and training programs are now employed around the world by designers, engineers, business leaders, architects, and other innovators. Nicole works with a diverse set of clients, professional learners, and partner organizations to share the power of biomimicry. 

As Managing director, Nicole’s primary goal for Biomimicry 3.8 is to create a 100-year company. She works closely with key strategic partners and clients to get biomimicry into the hands of the designers, innovators, and changemakers that shape our world. This has included work with Google, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Target, Interface, Estee Lauder and other leading Fortune 100 innovators and sustainability leaders.

Nicole holds a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Montana. She is a Fellow of Columbia University’s American Assembly Next Generation Project—a review of U.S. Global Policy and the Future of International Institutions. Nicole has been included in feature stories in The Wall Street Journal and Time Magazine, as well as profiled in Digital IQ Magazine. She has received the Utah Business “30 under 30” Award for her work at Overstock.com and was recently awarded “20 under 40” by the Missoulian for her work at Biomimicry 3.8.

Nathan Havey

Nathan believes that powerful stories are our best tool to shift the consciousness of people and the priorities of society.  That’s why he is producing a major documentary feature on the story of Interface, a global public carpet company that rose from one of the dirtiest industries in the world, to become a north star, guiding us toward a sustainable global economy, and teaching us how to get there.  

Nathan is the co-creator of Sum and Substance, a storytelling event about purpose at work, he is a frequent contributor to Conscious Company Magazine, and he was tapped by Conscious Capitalism Inc. to co-create the first-ever certification and conscious capitalism consulting.  In his private consulting he helps to bring people into the movement and bring the four pillars of conscious capitalism alive inside of companies like $100 million coffee franchise, BIGGBY COFFEE.  

Stephen Distante

Stephen Distante shares his unique message of entrepreneurship with purpose as an engaging keynote speaker, a filmmaker, an ambassador to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals, and through the online educational platform he founded, Impact U. As an influencer in the impact space, Steve is dedicated to increasing the reach and importance of impactful business. His recently released documentary film “Igniting Impact” sheds light on how purposeful entrepreneurship can help improve the world’s greatest challenges.

As a life-long entrepreneur, Steve is dedicated to elevating the global entrepreneurial community. Steve is the President of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) NY Long Island chapter and has previously served as President for the NYC chapter. EO is the world’s most influential group of founding entrepreneurs, with over 13,500+ members across 186 chapters in 58 countries. Named as the United Nations’ Global Ambassador of EO, Steve represents entrepreneurs working across the globe on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a collection of 17 global goals set to transform the world by the year 2030. Steve champions the SDGs in EO and Impact U as a tool to foster conversation and collective action towards a better world.

Presenting partners:

With gratitude to our alliance partners

In kind sponsors:

Contact us with questions, sponsorship requests or ideas

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