Deniz Ortac

Senior Policy Officer, Transport for NSW2014 Sydney Fellowship

Deniz Ortac Photo

Leadership is important in building momentum

What was the most valuable thing you got out of CSL?

A fantastic network of passionate people and a lot of inspiration for the future

Why are you passionate about sustainability? What was the moment or event that made you decide to become a 'change maker' in your field?

I am particularly passionate about nature. Not only do I love being in nature, but I also think that nature is at the heart of the sustainability crisis, since ultimately humankind cannot exist without it. I personally see so much beauty to be found on this planet, and to me it is the worthiest pursuit to try to preserve this beauty for future generations, and for nature's own sake. My epiphany moment was when I attended the screening of a short film called "The Coalition of the Willing". It made me realise that the 'good and lasting' kind of change is not driven by those individuals who have the most power, but by motivated and passionate people who feel that something is not quite right with the world, and who work together to make a difference. I was very keen to be part of such a community.

Why is leadership for sustainability is important?

Any movement depends on as many people as possible being part of it. To me personally, leadership is important in building this kind of momentum.

What do you plan to do next on your sustainability journey?

First and foremost, after completing CSL and, earlier, a Master of Environmental Management, I plan to transition into a different career path that is more aligned with my values and passion for sustainability. But I am also determined to work on a sustainability project outside my day-time job. This may either be in the form of volunteering for an organisation that I strongly support, or a real passion project that will be run together with a few other people.

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