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Profile: It’s Not Easy Bein’ Green

By: Leslie Benson
Posted: March 5, 2008, from the March 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.
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Timothy Kapsner
Senior Research Scientist
Aveda Corporation
www.aveda.com

When Tim Kapsner was developing children’s personal care products for Minnetonka Inc. in the 1980s—themed after Sesame Street characters like Kermit the Frog—he couldn’t have imagined that his introduction to the Muppet known for “Bein’ Green” would bring him full circle more than 20 years later as a senior research scientist for one of the most eco-friendly beauty companies in North America.

Kapsner caught the green thumb in 1993 when he began working for the Aveda Corporation as a formulator at the company’s facility in Blaine, Minnesota, developing the Phomollient and Self Control styling product lines. Now an ingredient developer, Kapsner meets with farmers and suppliers firsthand to find the most sustainable, botanically-based raw material for Aveda’s 600-some products, including professional hair care, skin and body care lines, makeup and fragrances.

“When I came to Aveda, I learned I could be creative and live a vision—that of being more environmentally conscious,” Kapsner says. “We now make all of our products [using]100% wind energy. We’re trying to move toward more sustainable ingredients, green packaging and green in all aspects of the company.”