by Justin Barber, Highwoods
We were very pleased to see many new and seasoned GTC of IFMA members and their guests at our March Member Committee Orientation and the March Monthly Meeting to hear Leigh-Kathryn Bonner, the 25-year old founder and CEO of Bee Downtown. As a fourth generation beekeeper, she and her “buzzing” startup are setting the standard for corporate sustainability and employee engagement by installing and maintaining beehives on the campuses of many of the United States’ largest and most well-known companies.
Founded in North Carolina, she has recently expanded the business to Atlanta where she is working directly with CEOs and other senior leaders to improve and implement the Bee Downtown program for some of the largest companies in the world. Delta, AT&T, Chick-fil-A, Georgia Power, and Invesco are among the 50 companies with over 200 hives in total that are using the Bee Downtown program to bring awareness to sustainability and offer the oneof-a-kind “hive mindset” leadership experience to their employees.
In just three short years, Leigh-Kathryn’s innovative approach to sustainability and introducing agriculture back into cities has won the young entrepreneur the distinction of 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30, 2018 INC Magazine-30 Under 30 Rising Star, 2017 Southern Living-Southerner of the Year, Bitter Southerner-Queen Bee and more.