"Defeatism achieves nothing!""There isn't a company in the world that can put a sign on the door saying 'Closed for reasons of sustainability'""Let's join forces and make sustainable construction the ...
"Defeatism achieves nothing!"
"There isn't a company in the world that can put a sign on the door saying 'Closed for reasons of sustainability'"
"Let's join forces and make sustainable construction the Dutch export product par excellence"
These are unmistakable slogans of Anne-Marie Rakhorst. Entrepreneur, author, owner-director of the various Search companies and in-demand speaker. She has not been idle after being voted Business Woman of the year 2000; quite the contrary, she has grown into one of the most remarkable sustainability-oriented trendsetters in the Netherlands. Famous for her decisiveness, sharp one-liners, but especially her crystal clear vision, which she promotes with powerful examples and a great sense of humour.
She draws topical examples from the daily practice of the Search companies she runs. Having founded Search in 1994, Anne-Marie managed over twenty years to expand the company into an engineering agency, a training institute, a laboratory and a consultancy firm, with a wide range of services in the areas of (sustainable) construction, high-quality recycling (demolition), environmental surveys, spatial planning, energy, safety and water.
Her companies work under a single flag worldwide. They comprise 285 employees working as a team, that together continue to contribute to the good name and reputation of the operating companies both in the Netherlands and abroad.
Anne-Marie further wrote the bestsellers 'Sustainable Development… a Global Opportunity' and 'Sustainable Building, Sustainable Profits' and initiated the Dutch translation of 'Cradle to Cradle, Remaking the Way we Make Things', the sustainability promoting bestseller by Michael Braungart and William MacDonough. Books for which she received the help of sustainability experts like Wubbo Ockels, renowned architects like Thomas Rau, top officials like the Dutch Minister of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment, Jacqueline Cramer, and the crème de la crème of the business community. In this way she attempts, in her books as in actual practice, to inspire experts, government and businesses to join forces and make sustainable profits. Multifaceted profits. Profits for humans at large, profits for the environment, and certainly also profits for the Dutch business community. Because sustainability and financial success are not mutually exclusive, indeed, she is firmly convinced that they go hand in hand.
In addition to her activities as an inspiring entrepreneur, Anne-Marie Rakhorst holds a number of administrative positions that are in keeping with her vision of corporate social responsibility. These positions include memberships of Urgenda (a Dutch sustainability organisation), the Climate Council, the Club of Rome and ACTAL. She is furthermore on a committee, chaired by Mr. Klaas Knot, president of De Nederlandsche Bank N.V. (the Dutch central bank), that selects the winner of the prestigious Koning Willem I award every year.
In short, an inspiring speaker with a clear vision and a pragmatic approach. An approach that she is more than happy to share, based on the belief that we can achieve this vision if we all work together. Because – to end with a quote by Anne-Marie – "If we can't do it in the Netherlands, it can't be done anywhere!"