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Good Corporate Citizen/The Power of Youth

Ralph welcomes good corporate citizen, Gero Leson, to discuss his book “Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey to a Clean, Green and Ethical Supply Chain.” And progressive wunderkind, Calla Walsh, tells us about her own foray into organizing and influencing Massachusetts politics at the ripe old age of… sixteen.

Gero Leson is Vice President of Special Operations at Dr. Bronner’s. Since 2005, he has been responsible for Dr. Bronner’s sourcing of major ingredients from certified fair trade and organic projects. He is the author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain.

“[The Bronner family] decided they have to look beyond just the operation in the United States. They need to look at where the raw materials that are used for all-natural soaps, where they come from. Now those are mostly tropical oils… and then the thought was ‘We can’t just call ourselves a responsible company without knowing how those materials are grown and processed. And that they hopefully have a beneficial impact on the ground.’”

Gero Leson, author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain

“We’re very strategic about the partners we pick in philanthropy. And that’s just like how we run the business, too. Which is very efficient, in many respects.”

Gero Leson, author of Honor Thy Label: Dr. Bronner’s Unconventional Journey To A Clean, Green, And Ethical Supply Chain  


One figure, listeners, that really stunned me– you know, most companies, they give 1% of their pre-tax profits, which is deductible. They brag about it. If they give 3%, they boast about it big time. What you say in this book… is that you (Dr. Bronner’s) give 47% to charitable and educational, environmental, safety, and health projects outside your company.”

Ralph Nader

Calla Walsh is a political organizer from Cambridge, Massachusetts. She has worked on electoral and advocacy campaigns at the federal, state, and local levels, and she is currently teaching a course on winning the youth vote at Movement School NYC Campus.

“For so long, the establishment has held the tools that you need to gain power. But really their tools aren’t starting to work anymore. We saw that with the Markey campaign. Where young people took a really unprecedented approach to digital organizing and using social media to relationally organize our peers, and to turn out voters, and to get people to sign up to volunteer and donate. And now, a ton of people are asking us ‘Hey! How did you do that?’ But… none of these strategies work if you don’t actually have a progressive policy platform.”

Calla Walsh, political activist


“I consider school more of a side job and that organizing and activism takes up a much bigger part of my life. And I just think it’s a lot more important to me. And hopefully [my teachers] understand why school might not be my biggest priority, because there are things that I’m more passionate about outside of school.”

Calla Walsh, political activist and junior in high school

Ralph Nader Radio Hour Ep 378 Transcript (Right click to download)


  1. Linda says:

    Love you Ralph. Please edit your videos to shorter more digestible time slots, you will get so many more listeners

  2. stan moore says:

    There you go Ralph with a more dynamic “unstoppable”, your wisdom and experience with the energy and idealism of the youth. Thank you for bringing Calla on your show. Looking forward to hearing more from your and her combined projects.

  3. Adriana Avila says:

    I just wanted to thank you and the guests for this episode. I have been pretty discouraged lately, the news are enraging and depressing at the same time, the Biden administration seems to be giving up on all the things they purport to support and that would help people, the parties are pretty much only one, the foreign policy of this administration is just a continuation of the previous ones, the climate destruction continues. Listening to this episode made me a little more hopeful and I am so grateful for the guests.

  4. Wendyyona says:


  5. Kate Harris says:

    Thank you for raising awareness of Gero’s book about Dr. Bronner’s remarkable business practices. I’ve asked my library to purchase a copy. At least one of the green magazines you likely sent a copy to ran a very brief review:

  6. Peter says:

    I listen to every show, I LOVE IT
    This episode was REALLY inspiring!

  7. Peter m Stema says:

    I think I am going to donate copes of this book to SEVERAL libraries in my area