Bill Shireman

Bill Shireman is a serial social entrepreneur, policy innovator, and conflict mediator who brings together capitalists, activists, conservatives, progressives, and other unusual bedfellows to overcome challenges that often divide them. 

In 2023-2024, Bill acted as co-curator of EarthX2024, bringing together the world’s foremost environmentalists, conservationists, scientists, political thought leaders, advocates, and academics in the environmental space.   

To tackle political polarization and help revitalize democracy, Shireman chairs the Leadership Circle and its citizen recruitment initiative, In This Together.  He helps philanthropists use best-in-class proprietary data, analytics, deliberative polling, and communication tools to mobilize pragmatic “solution citizens” behind practical policies that work.   

As President of the non-profit Future 500, he invites Greenpeace, ExxonMobil, Rainforest Action Network (RAN), Mitsubishi and other corporate and environmental leaders to work together.  He brokered agreements to create the world’s first corporate supply chain standards for sustainable forestry (between Mitsubishi, RAN, and then 400 other companies), the most effective beverage container recycling program (the California CRV deposit system and its progeny), and the 2008 agreement by both Greenpeace and Exxon-Mobil to support precisely the same federal tax on carbon, which went absolutely nowhere. 

So others can take up where he eventually leaves off, he teaches leadership and negotiations at the UC Berkeley Haas Business School, and serves as chairman and a surrogate founding father of BridgeUSA, where young progressives, conservatives, libertarians, and independents all register to decline-to-hate, and engage in democracy by listening, speaking, learning, teaching, and then solving problems together. 

Professor Shireman is the author of 7 books. His latest, In This Together: How Republicans, Democrats, Capitalists, and Activists are uniting to tackle climate change and more, can be found on Amazon and in leading bookstores. 

When he’s not traveling around the country engaging and inspiring corporate, academic and NGO audiences, he lives in San Francisco with his wife and children. Bill has a soft spot for green tea lattes and meeting people from faraway places who stay at his Airbnb.