After serving at the helm of Patagonia and helping to establish new standards in corporate responsibility, Kristine Tompkins undertook a bigger challenge: establishing 14.7 million acres of national parks in South America.

Why you should listen

Kristine Tompkins worked with Yvon Chouinard from Patagonia's early days, eventually serving as CEO for 16 years. The prototypical "anti-corporation," Patagonia has donated large sums toward conservation and became a pioneer in mitigating environmental impacts at scale.

In 1993, she joined Doug Tompkins in Chile to acquire land to create national parks. Through Tompkins Conservation, she has helped to establish 11 new national parks and two marine parks in Chile and Argentina and works to recover healthy populations of native species crucial to large-scale ecological recovery. Her rewilding initiative is considered the most ambitious of its kind in the Americas.

Kristine Tompkins’ TED talk