STRATHAM, NH: The Timberland Company has appointed Mark Newton, formerly of Dell, as VP of corporate social responsibility.
Newton will lead the footwear and apparel company's global CSR team, focusing on the environment, human rights, community engagement, and transparency and reporting. In his new position, he will report to Carrie Teffner, Timberland's chief financial officer.
According to Teffner, the company conducted a "thorough search" of candidates before settling on Newton. He replaces Gordon Peterson, the former VP of CSR, who has since become the VP of change management business transformation at Timberland.
"What's most exciting about working at Timberland for me is that here CSR is integral to the culture, doesn't need to be sold and, as a result, is authentically reflected in the brand," Newton said. "Here the paradox that 'doing well and doing good are mutually exclusive' has been debunked."
Newton joins from Dell, Inc., where he served as executive director of global sustainability. He has also previously led environmental technology programs at Apple and Motorola and served as a principal scientist for DEKA Research and Development Corp.
Under Newton, the global CSR team will be responsible for supporting Timberland's long-term branding efforts, including demonstrating environmental leadership; reducing the company's ecological impact; ensuring all employees, vendors, and suppliers adhere to human rights standards; and bolstering community service efforts.
"We are expert bootmakers but are not experts in the emerging disciplines of cradle-to-cradle manufacturing, climate science, green chemistry, geopolitics, etc.," Newton explained. "It's critical that we have meaningful and frequent regular conversation with issue experts, customers, industry partners, suppliers, and all others along the value chain — especially those with innovative or opposing views to help us shape effective policy and supporting strategies."
VF Corp., whose brands including Wrangler and Nautica, in June agreed to purchase Timberland for approximately $2 billion, expanding its outdoor and sports offerings.