A conversation with John Oppermann

A conversation with John Oppermann

Written on 10/07/2019
by Pierre

Name: John Oppermann

City: NYC

Hashtags Bio: #earthdayinitiative #greenrealestate #dojust1thing

Background Facts: John is the Executive Director of Earth Day Initiative as well as a real estate broker focused on green and healthy homes. He graduated with a B.S. in International Politics from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.

Within the organisation of Earth Day Initiative, John manages the breadth of its activities, from its annual Earth Day events to its year-round programs, which include a classroom gardens program and a sustainable food toolkit aimed at high school students.  Prior to joining Earth Day Initiative, John worked in both corporate law and energy and climate change policy. In addition to this, he has also published his work on Latin America’s role in global deforestation talks.

Earth Day dates back to 1970 when a perfect storm of public awareness, political will, and dedicated activism converged to create one of the largest demonstrations in human history.  More than 10,000 events engaged 20 million people across America.  Everyone from housewives to Hollywood actors took part in the first Earth Day events.  Over the years, Earth Day has continued as an annual call to action from classrooms to board rooms.  The inclusiveness of the first Earth Day has only grown as Earth Day events have spread around the world.   

Nowadays, Earth Day is an annual event - each April 22 - celebrated around the world when people take time to appreciate humankind's connection to the Earth and to raise awareness of our environmental challenges.  From workshops to volunteer trips and craft projects to major environmental clean-ups, individuals and organizations of all sizes take part in Earth Day activities.

We are pleased to have John as one of the founding member of Indigo NYC, see what he says.

What does mindfulness mean to you?

Achieving a clarity of mind to identify what is really important to you and what connects you to your own values and priorities in your daily life.


How did you first start your journey to mindfulness?

I think I approached the concept of mindfulness from an oddly scientific angle reading about human evolution and social psychology.Just learning about what makes humans happy.I think I absorbed various things I read about what makes humans happy and then I think about those as ingredients in a recipe for a happy human.Those things include time spent with friends and family, physical activity, sunlight, sleep, etc.


What are you the most proud of, so far?

Being able to craft a life and career that makes me happy. That largely means not getting distracted by things like an overemphasis on money or other factors that ultimately don't make you the happiest human. I do work that I care about with environmental advocacy work and connecting people to green homes, all of which moves us toward a more sustainable future.


What would you like to be remembered for?

That I was kind.


Any recommendations for books?

The Cut on Tuesdays podcast.They have a segment with various women who juggle a lot in their own lives and it's full of various relatable stories about life hacks, ways of prioritizing what is important, etc.


If you were an animal, a plant or anything else than a Human Being ... What would you be?

Some kind of very active animal that gets to run around outdoors a lot?A deer?Or a dog?


Is there anything you want to ask to the Community?

At Earth Day Initiative we have a broad range of ways for people to engage with sustainability and be part of the climate solution.Whether as an individual or as an organization, we have a lot of ways to easily plug in to what we're doing for Earth Day 50.People should get in touch to learn more.


Let’s finish with 3 words. Your own three words...

Happiness, health, sunshine.