Nicola J. Acutt, Ph.D., is Vice President, Sustainability Strategy, in the Office of the CTO at VMware. Nicola is a change maker, thought leader and strategist whose leadership experience spans business, government and nonprofits. Responsible for sustainability across operations, product and people, Nicola is passionate about a business focused approach to corporate sustainability strategy. Hired in 2010 to launch the VMware Foundation, Nicola implemented a novel approach that calls upon the company's 18,000-plus global employees as “citizen philanthropists” to shape the direction of VMware’s corporate giving. In 2014, she assumed additional responsibility as Vice President for Global Community Affairs, chartered with leading an effort to revitalize the company’s values and employee experience. This work culminated in VMware being named one of the Fortune’s “100 Best Companies to Work For” for the first time in 2015. Nicola now leads VMware’s Sustainability Strategy focusing on the company's product impact as well as stronger operational efficiency and performance. Prior to joining VMware, Nicola was a faculty member of the Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco, where she led Curriculum Development and rose to rank of Associate Dean. Earlier in her career, she worked as a consultant to the South African Government on natural resource policy and, as a Ph.D. candidate, undertook research at the Center for Social and Economic Research on the Global Environment in the UK. Originally from South Africa, Nicola received a Commonwealth Scholarship to complete her Ph.D. at the University of East Anglia in the UK, and has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California, Berkeley.