Environmental Studies graduate makes a big impact on corporate sustainability.
Megan Bloomer ’06 has made a career out of helping companies become more sustainable.
Whether you are pouring ketchup on a sandwich in the Grand Canyon or savoring a slice of Oreo Dream Extreme from The Cheesecake Factory, your meal is more environmentally friendly thanks to Megan Bloomer ’06.
Bloomer has made a career out of helping companies become more sustainable. She has been successful because she demonstrates that sustainability is much more than a recycling program. “I can tell you what goes into which recycling bin,” Bloomer said, “but let’s go talk about how we can save $20 million on energy.”
Bloomer discovered her passion for sustainability thanks to basketball practice ending a little late on class registration night during her first semester at the College. The chemistry lab that she had planned to take was full. She opted instead for an environmental studies class.
“The rest is history,” Bloomer said. “I loved the content, and it came really easy to me.”
After becoming one of the College’s first environmental studies graduates, Bloomer took a job as the director of sustainability for Grand Canyon National Park.
There, she led a project that replaced the disposable ketchup packets with reusable bottles in the park’s restaurants. “We reduced almost half a ton of waste every year that would have had to be brought back out of the canyon,” she said.
That project demonstrates a principle she applies every chance she gets. “Very small things can add up to a very big impact,” she said.
Bloomer later spent more than four years as director of sustainability for Davita, Inc., the world’s largest dialysis provider. This summer, The Cheesecake Factory, a Fortune 500 restaurant known for its signature desserts, hired her as its first sustainability director.
She stands out in the sustainability field because of her ability to help everyone in a company understand the importance of sustainability. “Megan has a very impressive track record of starting a sustainability program from scratch and then taking that program to scale in a way that delivers tangible and measurable business value,” said Hunter Lovins, the president of Natural Capitalism Solutions, a consulting firm that helped The Cheesecake Factory recruit Bloomer.
In addition to making business sustainable, Bloomer enjoys helping current Randolph College students connect their liberal arts and science backgrounds to careers. She visits campus occasionally to meet with students, but she also often corresponds with them to offer advice on resumes and jobs.
“I believe no one got where they are in life without someone else helping them along the way,” Bloomer said. “The success that I have today in my professional life is due to a lot of people who walk around on that campus. The ability to spend an hour of my time helping current undergrads have that same kind of experience is really important to me.”