Following SLF’s growth and engagement over the last 18 months, the Foundation is delighted to announce the appointment of our new Technical Director, Katie Kutskill MSc, effective from 4th April 2022.

Katie joins us from Pangea (formerly GST Autoleather) where she was the Global Executive Director for Product Development and Sustainability Officer. SLF have been liaising with Katie and Pangea since December last year to ensure a smooth transition and handover could take place. 

Katie’s background and experience will bring heightened value to the work of SLF, with Katie having gained her Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Policy from the University of Michigan and her Master of Science (MSc) in Leather Technology from Northampton University. In addition, Katie has worked for Eagle Ottowa-Lear before moving on to Pangea in her most recent role, and therefore understands the unique challenges from both a product and a sustainability perspective.

Katie Kutskill, Technical Director – “I am honoured to start my next chapter as the Technical Director at the Sustainable Leather Foundation (SLF). The time is right for our industry to make tangible, impactful change that showcases leather’s inherent sustainable qualities. SLF is dedicated to this mission, and I am humbled to be a part of this great team!”

Deborah Taylor, SLF’s Managing Director “With the unprecedented growth that SLF have experienced in our first 18 months, we know that Katie’s ability to understand our industry from a technology perspective and also the wider environmental, social and governance challenges that are so important for the future, means that we can confidently assure our continued vision to fully support our leather industry of the future.  Katie has believed in SLF’s approach since we launched in January 2021, having been the Chair of our Advisory Board since November 2020 and playing an active role in our strategic direction as a Foundation.  Her leadership of our technical programme and the technical team is the next step in our growth, and we are extremely excited to start working with Katie full time in order to realise our vision for the leather value chain.” 

The Sustainable Leather Foundation’s vision is to enable collective improvement and education globally, for more sustainable practices in leather manufacture and production. SLF is concerned with all aspects of sustainability – Environmental, Social and Governance. As a not-for-profit organisation, the Foundation provides a transparent and inclusive approach to demonstrating sustainable good practice throughout the value chain. Coupled with this, the Foundation is committed to ensuring that consumers have a clear

mechanism to see and understand the sustainable attributes of leather as a material, and the work that the industry does to ensure good practice.

The Foundation’s objective is to bring together all leather value chain stakeholders to unite in ensuring a sustainable future for the leather industry by shining a spotlight on innovation and best practice, providing a mechanism for improvement and education, while also preserving the social and economic wellbeing of communities in less advanced regions.   

At the heart of the Foundation is an integrated Transparency Dashboard™ and certification standard that utilises an accessible, inclusive and modular (A.I.M.) approach to certification.  This ensures the alleviation of duplication of effort and puts the emphasis on improvement and partnership to meet the standards and performance necessary to support a sustainable leather industry of the future.