Earth Day is every day for D.C. alum

Who doesn’t want to save the world? Michael Kite does that for a living through World Wildlife Fund.

Michael Kite, class of 2002 As a marketing specialist for one of the world’s leading conservation organizations, Kite and his team of three work to raise more than $5 million each year. The majority of that money comes from licensing partnerships and promotions with the likes of Barnes & Noble, Gap, Hewlett-Packard, Dial and Coinstar.

Retail partnerships help WWF spread its message to the general public and raise funds for its conservation work around the globe. For example, Bank of America contributes $100 for every special Visa account opened and Nabisco is supporting WWF’s “Year of the Tiger” initiative with special packaging and a $100,000 donation. The new CVS Green Bag Tag program rewards reusable bag-toting customers, and generates five cents for WWF for each tag sold.

All support WWF’s mission of protecting the future of nature, down to the finest details, Kite said.

“We like to see that the product is made from recycled material and is recyclable itself, and somehow ties into our mission,” the 2002 SUNY Oswego graduate said. The Green Bag Tag, for instance, is made from a corn-based material and features a 100 percent recycled silicone lanyard.

As a broadcasting major at Oswego, Kite got involved with WRVO-FM and WNYO-FM.

“I think it gave me a lot more confidence in talking to people,” he said. It was an essential part of his early career in broadcast sales and remains an important piece in the message he “sells” today.

“The best part of my job is seeing a product in the store with the WWF logo after months of working with a company to launch it,” said Kite, who joined the organization in 2006. “It’s rewarding to give people a fun, unique way to protect our planet.”

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PHOTO CAPTION: Good job—Michael Kite, a 2002 SUNY Oswego graduate, is a marketing specialist for World Wildlife Fund in Washington, D.C. He started working with the nonprofit in 2006.

(Posted: Apr 21, 2010)

Tags: alumni