Mark Tercek is president and CEO of The Nature Conservancy, the global conservation organization known for its intense focus on collaboration and getting things done for the benefit of people and nature.
The Nature Conservancy has over 1 million members, and protects more than 120 million acres of land in 69 countries.
He is the author of the Washington Post and Publisher’s Weekly bestselling book Nature’s Fortune: How Business and Society Thrive by Investing in Nature.
Growing up as a city kid in Cleveland, Mark was a late-bloomer to conservation. It was becoming a parent that sparked his passion for nature. “I want to be able to look my kids in the eye,” he says, “and tell them I did all I could to leave the world a better place.”
A former managing director and Partner for Goldman Sachs, where he spent 24 years, Mark brings deep business experience to his role leading the Conservancy. He is a champion of the idea of natural capital — valuing nature for its own sake as well as for the services it provides for people, such as clean air and water, productive soils and a stable climate.
During his time at Goldman Sachs, Mark managed several of the firm’s key units, including Corporate Finance, Equity Capital Markets and Pine Street, the firm’s leadership development program. In 2005, after two decades as an investment banker, Mark was tapped to develop the firm’s environmental strategy and to lead its Environmental Markets Group.
Inspired by the opportunity to help businesses, governments and environmental organizations work together in new, innovative ways, Mark left Goldman Sachs in 2008 to head up The Nature Conservancy.
In 2012, Mark appointed by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to serve on the New York State 2100 Commission, which was created in the wake of Superstorm Sandy to advise the governor and the state on how to make the state’s infrastructure more resilient to future storms. Mark is also a member of several boards and councils, including Resources for the Future, the Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, the advisory board for the Harvard Business School’s Social Enterprise Initiative, board member of SNAPP (science joint-venture with UC Santa Barbara and the Wildlife Conservation Society) and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Drawing on his professional background in the financial sector, Mark is leading TNC’s impact capital initiative and serves as Board Chair of NatureVest. Mark serves on the Williams College Board of Trustees. Mark earned an M.B.A. from Harvard in 1984 and a B.A. from Williams College in 1979, and served on the finance faculty of New York University’s Stern School of Business until 2008.