Before stepping into her role at Las Vegas Sands as the global sustainability manager, Barbara Gore studied environmental management at Duke University with a focus on business and sustainability. During her program, Gore held graduate internships with the World Wildlife Fund and the Walt Disney Company. Now, within Sands ECO360, the company’s global sustainability program, she works on the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), and helps facilitate engagement of global properties on strategic sustainability initiatives and best practices.
Previous to her current position in sustainability, Gore had an unlikely career in endangered species conservation and environmental policy. With a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Science, Gore found herself at the forefront of the environmental issues, managing sea turtle conservation projects in South Carolina and the Cayman Islands. Gore worked with researchers and community members to share valuable information with government officials to improve species conservation management and policies.
Gore enjoyed the time spent working to protect endangered sea turtles, but management tactics were very niche amongst all environmental issues and were handled through regulatory initiatives and policies rather than leveraging the power of the private sector to influence change.
“Going from a niche focus to a bigger picture was incredibly important for me, it’s why I decided to go back to school to study sustainability,” Gore said. “The landscape of how we do business is changing, companies recognize the relationship between sustainability and business opportunity. Las Vegas Sands is the perfect example of that, with properties all around the world, changes to energy or water policies create a meaningful impact on a global scale.”
She interned for The Walt Disney Company, working with their sustainability team to help them understand their electricity consumption on a more granular level. She created an excel model that quantified 150,000+ Information Technology (IT) devices, primarily computers and computer monitors, to pilot and grasp the concept.
Gore completed her second graduate internship with World Wildlife Fund working on a partnership with Hilton Hotels that focused on developing a project around food waste. This experience allowed her to get hands-on experience discovering all of the different opportunities and challenges of food waste and report back to WWF and Hilton to further develop a program and strengthen the partnership.
“WWF was an amazing experience for me and having that internship is what led me to want to work in hospitality sustainability,” she said.
Currently as the global sustainability manager, Gore is responsible for CDP and GRI reporting, where she will collect data and discover ways for Sands ECO360 to measure and manage the information collected and any issues that may arise. As a four-year A-lister on the national CDP list in climate change, it’s important for Las Vegas Sands to be aware of CO2 emissions, how it is managed and how the company aims to reduce those emissions overall. To provide an exemplary, high quality report, Gore collects and validates the data, and from there, reviews policies and strategies to input into CDP. Reporting for the GRI is just as important, standing as both a framework for sustainability reporting, and a management tool.
“Sands ECO360 recently aligned all of our global sustainability goals with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which is the UN’s plan for the planet. Organizations, companies, and governments are all trying to follow the SDGs in a lot of different ways. It’s inspiring to be all united under a shared vision for how we want the world to work,” she said.