Second Nature, Inc.

Commitment. Action. Innovation.

aka Second Nature   |   Boston, MA   |  www.secondnature.org

Mission

Mission Second Nature is committed to accelerating climate action in, and through, higher education. We do this by mobilizing a diverse array of higher education institutions to act on bold climate commitments, to scale campus climate initiatives, and to create innovative climate solutions. We align, amplify, and bridge the sector’s efforts with other global leaders to advance urgent climate priorities.

Ruling year info

1993

President

Dr. Timothy Carter

Main address

18 Tremont Street, Suite 608

Boston, MA 02108 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

04-3195772

NTEE code info

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (B01)

Management & Technical Assistance (C02)

Management & Technical Assistance (U02)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

We envision humanity thriving through healthy, just, and sustainable living within a dynamically changing earth system. We see higher education playing a prominent leadership role in shaping research, learning, and communities that inspire and operationalize this positive future. Second Nature serves as a critical driver for leaders in higher education that commit to this responsibility.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

The Climate Leadership Commitments

Second Nature works to proactively build a sustainable and positive global future through initiating bold commitments, scaling successful actions, and accelerating innovative solutions among leadership networks in higher education. The Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments are a signature program of Second Nature and include a Carbon Commitment (focused on reducing greenhouse gas emissions), a Resilience Commitment (focused on climate adaptation and building community capacity), and a Climate Commitment that integrates both. The Climate Leadership Network comprises more than 600 colleges and universities in every state and the District of Columbia who have committed to take action on climate and prepare students through research and education to solve the challenges of the 21st century.
This work is primarily funded by dues that we receive from participating campuses.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Academics

Our educational programming is primarily targeted at presidents and other senior administrators and professional staff in higher education, including Chief Financial Officers, and senior executives for sustainability, facilities, and/or energy. The Annual Summit attracts about 450 people, including 75 presidents and their designees. Monthly webinars and other programs provide opportunities to share and learn. Some programs are sponsored by corporations and/or non-profit partners.
We are also engaging and educating leaders in business and government on climate policy and the implications of political, regulatory, and economic decisions. This work is funded by registration fees and grants.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Academics

Through the Climate Resilience initiative, Second Nature began working directly with six campuses and their community partners in three cities in the western United States (Los Angeles, Phoenix, and Portland) to evaluate the action on Climate Commitments.
The CRUX project goals were to (1) Facilitate implementation of a nationally-scalable strategy to develop climate resilience with campuses and communities, and (2) Learn with and from these clusters as they complete benchmarks. The benchmarks are to (1) Create a campus/community task force or introduce the resilience planning framework into an existing campus/community structure, and (2) Complete a resilience capacity assessment including preliminary progress indicators. The initial cohort is now sharing learning among the campuses and with Second Nature's Climate Leadership Network to further accelerate resilience progress across the country.
As leading research institutions, members of the University Climate Change Coalition (UC3) are committed to leveraging their institutional strengths to foster a robust exchange of best practices and lessons learned in pursuit of accelerating local climate solutions that reduce greenhouse emissions and build community resilience. UC3 members span the North American continent, and their collaboration is a replicable model for multi-party action on climate. This work was launched with a grant from the Kresge Foundation and now has several sponsors.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Academics

Where we work

Awards

Leadership Award - NGO Sector 2009

U.S. Green Building Council

40 Media Winner 2010

Creativity International Award

Environmental Merit Award 2013

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Innovative Partnerships / Climate Leadership Award 2015

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of program/model/intervention innovations

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

The Climate Leadership Commitments

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric refers to the number of active grants, partnerships, and programs that generated $25K or more in direct revenues from a specific partner in a given fiscal year.

Number of participants attending course/session/workshop

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number of registrations for our Annual Summit and our Online Webinars.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Second Nature is committed to accelerating climate action in, and through, higher education.
We do this by mobilizing a diverse array of higher education institutions to act on bold climate commitments, to scale campus climate initiatives, and to create innovative climate solutions. We align, amplify, and bridge the sector’s efforts with other global leaders to advance urgent climate priorities.

Since its founding in 1993, Second Nature has played a critical role in mobilizing higher education to move the needle towards the goal of a sustainable society. We created and oversee the largest voluntary carbon neutrality commitment in any sector in the United States. Millions of students have passed through these schools and this history has placed Second Nature in a key leadership position working with higher education to advance sustainability.

As a network of institutions of higher education and as a trusted advisor to senior leaders in higher education, Second Nature seeks to:

1. Strengthen Second Nature’s leadership network through enhancing, leveraging, and suppporting climate action through a program originally known as the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) and now known as the Climate Leadership Commitments.
2. Diversify and integrate Second Nature’s core commitments with robust supporting activities.
3. Catalyze collaborative partnerships across institutions and sectors.
4. Lead the creation of a cross-sector sustainability data and information exchange.

Our strategic plan is designed to get us closer to our vision of seeing higher education as a key catalyst for positive global change. This future is one that we shared with many in other sectors of society. We know that the collective action needed for significant social change takes leadership of the leaders in higher education and with help from partners, we think this change can be significantly realized in this critical moment in history.

Our custom-designed programs influence
* Carbon Neutral Campuses & University Network Climate Performance Analysis
* Renewable Energy & Financing of Climate Programming
* Climate Resilience
* Collaboration among Research Universities
* Advocacy at the Global Level
* National and State-level Policy Initiatives
* Knowledge Exchange via an Annual Higher Ed Climate Leadership Summit

Second Nature’s Climate Leadership Network engages with national and state policy issues and contributes to climate action conversations on the global stage. Leveraging the resources and reach of the higher education sector mobilizes action at the state, national, and international level, through partnerships and events.

In order to further support climate action goals, our non-partisan Network is poised to support on-campus research and infrastructure improvements as well as broader policy and legislation on topics such as grid modernization, energy efficiency, clean transportation, and renewable energy. Drawing together the Network on key issues magnifies our impact for the future.

Financials

Second Nature, Inc.
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Second Nature, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 5/25/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Judith Ramaly

President Emerita, Winona State University

Term: 2020 -

Tim Carter

President, Second Nature

Laurie Fowler

Associate Dean for Administrative and Strategic Affairs, Odum School of Ecology, University of Georgia

Dianne Harrison

President, California State University, Northridge and Chair, Climate Leadership Steering Committee

Judith Ramaley

President Emerita, Winona State University

Nancy Sutley

Chief Sustainability and Economic Development Officer, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power

Valerie Smith

President, Swarthmore College

Scott Miller

President, Virginia Wesleyan University

Wim Wiewel

President, Lewis and Clark College

Christine Nelson

Chair of the Board of Laspau, a Harvard Affiliate

Ed Johnson

President, University Growth Solutions LLC

Steven Knapp

President and CEO, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh

Jim Buzier

Founding Director, Arizona Institutes for Resilience, University of Arizona

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 05/11/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 10/07/2020

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.