Social Entrepreneurship in the 21st Century
President & TeaEO
October 19, 2009Watch Seth Goldman.
Listen to Seth Goldman.
Learn more about Honest Tea.
Seth Goldman is President and TeaEO of Honest Tea, the company he co-founded in 1998 with Professor Barry Nalebuff of the Yale School of Management. Over the past eleven years the company has thrived with a 66% annual compound growth rate, as consumers have shifted toward healthier and more sustainable diets. In 2008 The Coca-Cola Company purchased a minority interest in Honest Tea, fueling further growth as Honest becomes the first organic and Fair Trade brand to move into the world's largest beverage distribution system.
An entrepreneur at heart, Seth started with lemonade stands and newspaper routes, and nearly pursued a prize-winning biotechnology idea before he started Honest Tea in his kitchen in 1998. Since then, the company has initiated community-based partnerships with suppliers in India, South Africa and Argentina and has created marketing partnerships with City Year, TerraCycle, Saturn hybrids and Jamis Bikes. The Better World Shopping Guide recently included Honest Tea on its list of the ten "best companies on the planet based on their overall social & environmental record." In 2009, Honest Tea received Greenopia.com's coveted 4-Leaf rating as "the greenest beverage company."
In 2008 Seth co-founded Bethesda Green, a local sustainability initiative in Honest Tea's hometown. In its first year Bethesda Green has installed dozens of recycling bins and helped area restaurants convert their grease waste into biodiesel. Seth also serves on the boards of Pennsylvania Certified Organic, Environmental Leadership Program, Happy Baby, and Net Impact.
Before launching Honest Tea, Seth worked at Calvert Group, managing the marketing and sales efforts for the nation's largest family of socially responsible mutual funds. His previous work includes managing a corporate initiative to combat child labor for the Calvert Foundation, directing an AmeriCorps demonstration project in Baltimore and serving as Senator Lloyd Bentsen's Deputy Press Secretary for two-and-a-half years. Before that, he worked in Beijing and Moscow. He is a graduate of Harvard College (1987) and the Yale School of Management (1995). Seth has been awarded a Crown Fellowship from the Aspen Institute and Ernst & Young's 2008 Entrepreneur of the Year Award for the Greater Washington D.C. area.