A Goodbye to an Inspirational Icon: Ray Anderson of Interface Flooring Dies at 77
Average Rating: ( 0 votes)
Ray Anderson died yesterday, August 8, 2011, in his home in Atlanta, GA, surrounded by loved ones. He was 77 years old when he succumbed to cancer. Ray Anderson was the founder and chairman of Interface, which he began in 1973.
The questions that people and companies must face, when attempting the daunting task of becoming an environmentally sustainable company, are where to start and what can one person/company do.
The answers can be found and the example has been set by the late, great, Mr. Ray Anderson and his company, Interface Flooring.
Ray Anderson died yesterday, August 8, 2011, in his home in Atlanta, GA, surrounded by loved ones. He was 77 years old when he succumbed to cancer.
Ray Anderson was the founder and chairman of Interface, which he began in 1973. It has always been an innovative company and produced the first free-lay carpet tiles in America.
Interface has become known for its products: Interface Flor America, Flor, Bentley Prince Street, Interface Flor Europe, Interface Flor Asia-Pacific, Interface Raise and Interface Services.
As time marched on, Ray’s insight to his business dynamic changed. He believed that it is not just a business but a morality issue and that no company should take more from the planet than it gives back.
In 1994, Ray proposed the challenge that Interface would have zero negative effects on the eco-system by 2020. This proposal is now implemented company-wide, and is called Mission Zero.
His goal was stated in interviews as:
“To operate this petroleum-intensive business in a manner that takes from the earth only that which is naturally and rapidly renewable – not one fresh drop of oil – and to do no harm to the biosphere… I see no other long term choice for industry to survive… Each of us has a role in this transformation. We must all learn to make peace with the earth, not to make war on it, or we will lose.”