Stop Superbugs: (m)Eating Antibiotic-Free in Chicagoland



My friend Jennifer is a Supermom Against Superbugs. In 2006, her son Sam was training for football season and thought eating a chicken Caesar salad was a healthy choice. However, he became terribly sick from an antibiotic-resistant superbug and lost over 30 pounds. Sam made a full recovery, and the experience inspired Jennifer’s family to take part in creating a safer food … Read more

Books & Films On My Mind



For inspiration in 2015, my New Year’s pledge was to read a book each month on issues I care about.  As luck would have it, some compelling thought leaders came out with exceptional books in 2014. Topics ranging from the good food movement and climate stability to creative entrepreneurs and social empowerment especially caught my eye.  Three months in, my book selections … Read more

10 Chicagoland Good Food Shifts to Savor


The local food movement sure is cooking in Chicagoland. While we live in one of the most plentiful food generating regions, it’s estimated a paltry 6% of our produce is grown in Illinois. Soured by food that travels over 1,000 miles to plate and is questionably produced to begin with, consumers are demanding locally sourced, organic food big time. Lagging supply has created tremendous … Read more

12* Powerful Climate Allies that GOP Denier Leaders Can’t Ignore

After my son submitted his college applications a few weeks ago, he confessed not getting into his top choice school would be the “ultimate dreamcrusher.” That aptly sums up the dread I started to feel following last week’s election. After working on climate change solutions for over 8 years, we are finally beginning to take meaningful steps to curb this epic global challenge. I want my kids … Read more

Announcing the Hanley Sustainability Institute

Anyone remember seeing this movie, Wall Street, in the late ‘80s?  I saw it as a junior in college. Back then, my professors didn’t have a clue. About sustainability that is, the word didn’t yet exist. As a business student at Northern Illinois University, I remember watching this movie in a crowded lecture hall. Many of my Reagan-era peers were captivated by the powerful investor Gordon Gecco … Read more

People’s Climate March Signs Speak Volumes


Last Sunday, I had the pleasure of joining around 400,000 people in New York to express the urgent need for meaningful climate action. From my vantage point with the NRDC contingent, the incredibly diverse and festive group had a great deal to say. Since a picture speaks a thousand words, check out this fun slideshow featuring some of my favorite protest signs. Thanks everyone who jammed … Read more

MAYDAY, MAYDAY – Democracy Calling


Last month, my friend Carla Young and I were blown away by the amazing Larry Lessig at the Kellogg Innovation Network’s (KIN) Change @ Scale forum. Another friend Stephanie Wolcott, who’s involved with KIN, had earlier told me his talk was a must-see. She was right. He’s a Harvard professor passionately committed to saving our democracy through Campaign Finance Reform. Clearly, money … Read more

Divestment at Catholic Universities a Climate Gamechanger?


Last week, the University of Dayton (UD) announced they will divest fossil fuels from their $670 million endowment – the first Catholic university in the nation to do so. Carbon Tracker 200 and “Filthy 15″ corporations will be phased out, and investments in sustainable and clean energy firms will increase.


Naysayers claim divestment won’t work. But I’m hopeful, along … Read more

Green Women Get Social


Forty sustainable sisters from across the North Shore socialized, “burgerfied” and discovered Make It Better’s green roots.


Let me back up a bit. After a successful North Shore women’s environmental event in November 2012, I came together with a group of women from Evanston to Highland Park to create North Shore Green Women(NSGW). As a result, we’ve organized several … Read more

12 Ways Chicagoland is Greener & Cleaner Than You Think


(reprinted from 6 Ways Chicagoland is Cleaner & Greener Than You Think Part I and 6 More Ways Part II featured on Amanda Hanley’s Huffington Post blog)



While the new Showtime series Years of Living Dangerously and recent International Panel on Climate Change report spotlight the troubling impacts of climate change –  there is hope!


Right here, … Read more