Putting green values into action
Driven by her passion for the planet, Alice Madolciu (BA ’07) inspires her workplace and society to go green.
Driven by her passion for the planet, Alice Madolciu (BA ’07) inspires her workplace and society to go green.By Megan Vander Woude Office of Advancement
Alice Madolciu (BA ’07) is one of 17 chartered professional accountants (CPAs) recognized as Emerging Leaders by CPA Ontario.
The award identifies young CPAs who make a positive impact in their workplace and community. Alice’s commitment to environmental advocacy made her a natural choice for the award. In an interview with Waterloo, she tells us how she puts her values into action.
These days we often look at our career as what defines us, but I don’t think we should be limited to that.
Even as a Waterloo student, Alice was passionate about our planet. “I have always been cognizant of environmental issues and tried to do my part in minimizing my footprint,” she explains. “After university, I felt I needed to get more involved. While I think it’s just as important that each person do what they can in their own little way, there’s only so much of an impact that can make.”
That’s when she started searching for volunteer opportunities. Alice donated her time to a number of organizations, including Greenpeace Canada and the Water Docs Film Festival. “I tried several different avenues to see how I could make an impact,” she says.
Three years ago, she took the volunteering plunge and now holds leadership roles on the boards of two environmental organizations. She uses her education as the treasurer of both Planet in Focus and GreenPAC, helping to build the accounting functions of the latter organization from the ground up.
When her employer started the process to go paperless, Alice took that opportunity to make a difference in her workplace too. After years working in a corporate office, she was aware of how much paper could be wasted, and championed the process. “You see people’s mindsets, and how they think their individual actions aren’t going to make an impact on society at large,” says Alice. “I try to change those mindsets by showing people that being friendly to the environment isn’t a burden on how you live your life, and making small changes in your routine can be beneficial for a multitude of reasons — not just the environment.”
In the end, Alice’s actions helped the company go paperless faster. Today, they rely primarily on hardware and software to complete their work, which has environmental and financial benefits, among others.
Alice hopes that the Emerging Leader Awards, and her own story, will inspire others to bring meaningful change to the world. “I hope it will encourage people to get out there and do exceptional things that will make a positive impact on whatever area of society they hold affinity to,” she says. “These days we often look at our career as what defines us, but I don’t think we should be limited to that. We have all kinds of interests and do all kinds of things with our time, and all of those things can lead to positive change.”