New Chapter Ahead for IISD President and CEO Richard Florizone

January 19, 2023

The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) and its Board of Directors announce today that Richard Florizone, IISD's President and CEO, will be leaving the organization in the second quarter of 2023 and taking up an advisory role with World Energy GH2, developing Canada's first commercial green hydrogen production.

Over the past 3 years, Richard has helped IISD navigate the uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, and the ongoing global economic and energy crises. He has led the organization as it's influenced global agreements and sustainability policy in over 50 countries, doubled its media impact, and grown revenue by over 60%. 

While we are sad to see him go, the Board and staff would like to extend their gratitude for his work in ensuring that IISD is in an even stronger position to respond to an ever-changing global landscape.

“On behalf of the entire Board, I would like to give our deepest thanks to Richard for his steadfast commitment to ensuring that IISD can continue to do what it does best: crafting evidence-based solutions for a stable climate, sustainable resources, and fair economies,” said Michelle Edkins, Chair of IISD's Board of Directors. “We wish Richard all the best as he continues to pursue his passion for supporting the clean energy transition.”

Richard has been instrumental in providing new strategic direction for IISD, bringing the team together during a period of strong growth to focus more than ever on making an impact in line with our mission, vision, and theory of change.

He has also strengthened the institute's financial position, helping secure new funding for the IISD-Experimental Lakes Area and for the secretariat of the NAP Global Network. Under his leadership, IISD has also been able to hire staff all over the world through a new, award-winning hiring model, while taking steps to foreground diversity, equity, and inclusion considerations. 

“I am immensely proud of our IISD team, whose unparalleled dedication to achieving a better world, even during times of global upheaval and uncertainty, has been an inspiration to witness these past 3 years,” Richard said. “I am excited to see what IISD achieves in the years to come and grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this impressive organization.”

As Board Chair, Michelle will lead the succession planning process, with further details to be announced in due course.

“We thank Richard for his thoughtful leadership during a defining period in IISD's history, ensuring the institute is positioned to achieve even greater impact in the years to come,” said Michelle. “We wish him the very best as he undertakes his new role and look forward to further collaboration in the future.”