Timberland releases responsibility report

The Timberland Company yesterday released its fourth Corporate Social Responsibility Report, outlining the Stratham-based company’s focus on global human rights, environmental stewardship, community involvement and employee engagement.

In a preceding letter, Timberland President and CEO Jeffrey Swartz talks of the success and failures experienced by the company and its employees as they work to “step outside their comfort zone” when addressing some of these issues and urges other corporate leaders to do the same.

“In the pages of this report, you’ll hear Timberland’s voice, including information about some of the ways we’re working to take greater risks and make a greater impact in our social responsibility efforts.”

In his letter, Swartz also warns corporate leaders to avoid complacency while being “good corporate citizens.”

“While we are busy being comfortable and complacent, the world is spinning by us at full throttle with issues that aren’t addressed,” Swartz writes. “And so, where it was once a great risk for business to step up and engage in matters of social justice, environmental stewardship and global human rights, it’s time to take a greater risk – to step outside our comfort zone and work to make our impact in these areas in ways that are stronger, deeper, more powerful and more thoughtful.”

New to this year’s report is a “Voice of Challenge” section, in which other corporate leaders — from companies including Patagonia, The Home Depot, Seventh Generation, Levi Strauss and Harlem Children’s Zoo — comment on Timberland’s efforts.

“I have long admired the risks Jeff Swartz has taken in seeking to link commerce and justice,” said Theresa Fay-Bustillos, vice president of community affairs and executive director of the Levi Strauss Foundation.

This year’s report can be found in its entirety at timberland.com. — TRACIE STONE

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