IonE NorthStar Initiative names new associate director

Linhoff brings experience, expertise in strategic marketing, operations and sustainability

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Mary Hoff, Institute on the Environment,, (612) 626-2670

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (6/6/11) – Michelle Linhoff has been named associate director of the Institute on the Environment’s NorthStar Initiative for Sustainable Enterprise.

The North Star Initiative, a program of the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment, brings together companies, government, NGOs and academic institutions to address global sustainability challenges. In her new position, Linhoff is responsible for building relationships with NorthStar Initiative partners, coordinating NorthStar Initiative research efforts, managing day-to-day operations of the program and managing strategic communications.

“The University of Minnesota has amazing resources and capacity to bring about systemic change that benefits society. This position offers me an opportunity to bring together my business acumen and passion for sustainability,” Linhoff said. “It’s a rare opportunity, and I am honored to be working at NorthStar Initiative within the Institute on the Environment contributing in a purposeful manor to this field of corporate sustainability.”

An MBA graduate of the Carlson School of Management, Linhoff also holds a B.S. degree from St. Catherine University, where she studied marketing and management and received a minor in economics. She worked previously in holistic health care for 15 years and most recently the Dean’s Office at the Carlson School. She is pursuing a Ph.D. in the University of Minnesota’s College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences with emphasis on corporate sustainability. 

“We couldn’t be more excited to have Michelle on board,” said NorthStar director Tim Smith. “Her balance of intellectual rigor and ‘can-do’ approach will significantly help take the initiative to a new level.”

The North Star Initiative provides world-leading companies, government, NGOs and academic institutions an opportunity to move beyond marginal greening efforts to more meaningful, systemic change. Through a collaborative stakeholder-driven research approach, the program facilitates the exchange of new ideas and solutions among academic, business and nonprofit participants. Its mission is to deliver research outcomes as identified through this collaboration.  For more information, see