ForeverMissed
Hazel Henderson, a world-renowned futurist, evolutionary economist, a worldwide syndicated columnist, consultant on sustainable development, and an inspiration to millions of economists, investment advisors, politicians and ecologists about ethical markets, a love-based economy and Golden Rule societies, died peacefully in her home with her daughter, Alexandra Leslie Camille Henderson, at her side. She was 89 years old.
Henderson was the author of The Axiom and Nautilus award-winning book Ethical Markets: Growing the Green Economy (2006) and eight other books. She co-edited, with Harlan Cleveland and Inge Kaul, The UN: Policy and Financing Alternatives, Elsevier Scientific, UK 1995 (US edition, 1996).Henderson,

Born on March 27, 1933 in Bristol, Somerset, United Kingdom, Henderson was the daughter of Kenneth and Dorothy May (Jesseman) Mustard. She came to the United States, 1957, naturalized, 1962.

She advised the US Office of Technology Assessment and the National Science Foundation from 1974 to 1980.

In 2005, Henderson started Ethical Markets Media, LLC, to disseminate information on green investing, socially responsible investing, green business, green energy, business ethics news, environmentally friendly technology, good corporate citizenship and sustainable development by making available reports, articles, newsletters and video gathered from around the world.

In 2007, Henderson started EthicalMarkets.TV to showcase video of people and organizations around the world with socially responsible endeavors.

Her editorials appear in 27 languages and in 200 newspapers syndicated by InterPress Service, Rome, New York, and Washington DC. Her articles have appeared in over 250 journals, including (in USA) Harvard Business ReviewNew York TimesChristian Science Monitor; and Challenge, Mainichi (Japan), El Diario (Venezuela), World Economic Herald (China), LeMonde Diplomatique (France) and Australian Financial Review. Her books are translated into German, Spanish, Japanese, Dutch, Swedish, Korean, Portuguese and Chinese. She sits on several editorial boards, including Futures Research QuarterlyThe State of the Future Report, and E/The Environmental Magazine (USA), Resurgence and Foresight and Futures (UK).
For more about Hazel's innumerable contributions, you can read her website: https://hazelhenderson.com/


Posted by Joan Anderson on June 30, 2022
Dearest Hazel, 
It has taken me a while to be able to put my feelings about your "going virtual" into words. You have been such a precious mentor to me in so many ways. I first encountered your work through the writings of Fritjof Capra, another great teacher for me, in May 1997, when I had completed a few days of a Buddhist peace walk in Cambodia. The timing was somehow very significant, and when I moved to Japan later that year to work for the SGI Buddhist group, I was overjoyed to hear that you would be coming to Japan and meeting with Daisaku Ikeda, our international president.

Over the next few years, I had the great joy of meeting you several times on your visits to Japan, and your connection with SGI and Mr. Ikeda deepened to the point that you coauthored the wonderful dialogue "Planetary Citizenship." Several times, I had the pleasure of interviewing you for the SGI Quarterly magazine over the phone - pre zoom days! 

Every time I encountered you, my mind was left buzzing and my spirit lifted by your clear-sighted courage, your brilliance and your incisive criticism of the financial and social status quo. I had an unvoiced and unfulfilled dream of writing your biography, as I felt that more people should know about your incredible contributions to environmental activism, ways of thinking about the great casino of the financial system and the love economy etc. etc. I was glad we could introduce you in the Seeds of Hope exhibition as a peerless example of an empowered individual.

The happiest time I spent with you was when I seized the chance to join you for a profound discussion on the future of democracy at your home at the end of 2018. I was so grateful to be able to spend those days with you and other brilliant minds, and then to stay on for a couple of days to see the beauty of St. Augustine, and talk much more - and go with you to the local gym, the beach and the craft market. Those days are really precious memories. 

I loved how you were always so happy to always encourage young women who were embarking on their own journeys. And how you read everything - and remembered it!!

I miss you, and I salute you, and I believe you will continue to shape my life even beyond this particular journey. You are always in my prayers and heart. Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

With deepest love and thanks,
Joanxxxx
Posted by Mike Sandler on June 5, 2022
I read some of Hazel's writings in college while trying to extract myself from conventional economics and trying to figure out what ecological economics was. Thank goodness for her foresight! I was also very impressed how she defined her own career path and struck out on her own as a sustainability futurist. We need more of those! I only met her briefly at a conference in 2001, but I still remember Hazel vividly, she had a real presence. She was so influential and on all the right topics and we are walking in her footsteps and standing on her shoulders.
Posted by Curtis Michelson on June 4, 2022
In 1990, the movie MindWalk arrived, and there was a showing of the film in Miami, coinciding with Miami-Dade county's kickoff of the Biscayne Bay restoration project and some other fledgling green initiatives. I grew up in Miami and was still living there at the time. Now I'm in Orlando.

Hazel and Fritjof Kapra (author of The Tao of Physics) were invited to keynote and spur discussion around the movie and what it means for Cities like Miami. And they sure did.

I was there, in the audience that day. I had recently read Tao of Physics and was a fan of Kapra's work. But I had no idea who Henderson was. She stepped up to a podium and I can recall her saying almost right away, "economics is a profession, not a science" and I fell in love.

I had just graduated with a BA in Philosophy from Florida International University, my college sweetheart had just dumped me, and now I was falling hard for Hazel. in Love with with her ideas, her beautiful British accent, her piercing blue eyes, and her humble wit. I bought her book Politics of the Solar Age on the spot, and had her sign the copy. Alas, somewhere in my many travels, I lost that book. But I do remember asking Hazel as she was signing my copy, "how do I become a Futurist?", and she looked at me with a smile, not really an answer.

I can't recall all the details of that day, but I do remember that both presenters made powerful impressions on me and the audience. They were different each in their own way. Kapra was a scientist, a systems thinker. Henderson a futurist, trained by Bucky Fuller. He offered a European view, rooted in the Green party movement. He said "not left, not right, but forward". She talked very practically about 'earth accounting' and quantifiably valuing earth resources along with labor, capital and the rest. She had an eco-feminist sensibility too. She wanted all the free labor of women caring for families to be accounted for too.

Something that day shifted where I would go with my life. I could have pursued endless academia. But I moved to Nicaragua and learned Spanish and became for a short time a 'Sandalista'. (Birkenstok wearing Sandinista fan boy). Certain people open wormholes to your potential, to where you can go. Hazel I'm sure did that for me. I didn't know what a Futurist really was, but something about it, was for me. She spurred me to apply knowledge, make connections, and to change things.

My only personal regret, besides losing my signed copy of her book, is that I didn't pay a personal visit to Hazel Henderson. She only lived a few hours up the road from me in St. Augustine, Florida. Maybe I could have even been mentored as she was mentored by Buckminster. We enneagram Fours are full of melancholy. But my sweet loss is tempered by the joy of knowing she will be remembered as the canary who sang sweetly in the coal mine. Hopefully the world will listen.

Coda:
The Miami-Dade county commissioner, wish I could remember his name, who paid for Henderson and Kapra to be there was a brave lone voice in Miami back then. Miami politics would continue to be dominated by drugs and corruption and environmental issues took a long back seat. Only now in the past 5 years has South Florida started to really honestly wrestle with the seawater washing up onto its skyline. The flood has come. And all of us who didn't hear or heed the words of folks like Henderson and Kapra back then, are paying and will pay a steep price for it.
Posted by Junko Kanzaki on June 1, 2022
I first read Planetary Citizenship when I was in high school. It greatly impressed me and sparked in me a desire to want to meet Hazel. Having learned that Hazel sometimes wrote letters to the authors of books which had been meaningful for her, one day I decided to write a letter to Hazel. To my surprise, after about a month, I received a reply back from her. I was so happy! But my dream of meeting Hazel in person would have to wait a few more years, until 2018, when I was able to visit St. Augustine, Florida.
She welcomed my sister and I so warmly, calling out to her assistant, “LaRae, Junko is definitely one of us!” We were only there two days, but she treated us like family from start to finish. I was deeply touched that she even helped me write my résumé.
One of my favorite things about Hazel is that she always tries to think about what is best for our common future and the planet, rather than getting trapped in the concepts and polarization that often characterizes our present-day reality. I truly admire her intelligence, conscientious attitude toward life and great foresight.

Dear Hazel,

It took some time for me to fully accept that you had really passed away. Though we are saddened, I appreciate that you said that you would “go virtual”. Your legacy will always live on, as your books, articles, webinars and radio broadcasts will continue to shine a light for many generations to come. I am so proud that I could have met you even once in my lifetime.
Though some people still don’t understand the value of your work, fast forward a century and I am convinced that history will prove your visionary ideas are correct.

With deepest thanks,
Junko
Posted by Ed Mayo on May 29, 2022
If ever anyone was able to bring the future forward, it was Hazel. To call herself a futurist suggested that she inhabited the future, whereas she was energetically and insistently always present too, with columns and opinions and writing shaped to the contours of now while always also looking forward too. I am so very grateful for her enormous contribution to new economic thought and practice, her generosity of engagement and her tireless inspiration.

I remember early on, when I was CEO of the UK based New Economics Foundation, pressing against the growth orthodoxy of the day, she would encourage me by repeating her view that ‘you don’t argue with economists… you hire economists’.

She was encouraging of others in the field and as an example this showed up so often in the references to her cake and icing model of wealth - a sustainable food metaphor before, thanks to Kate Raworth, we discovered the donut.

I was lucky to be able to commission Hazel to write what turned into one of her most powerful short books, Beyond Globalisation. In this, she ended with a reference to Pierre teilhard de chardin that if ever humanity discovered the true power of love, it would be as profound a change in our social condition as the discovery of fire.

Hazel, here we were always proud of your Bristol roots, always inspired by your engagement and will, now that you have rest, always be grateful for your full, rich and generous life.
Posted by Alison Goldwyn on May 28, 2022
When iconic powerhouses like Hazel "go virtual" there's an inevitable sense of loss from the limiting yet comfortingly familiar physical form. Yet more and more it seems we're being called upon to expand our understanding of who and what a "Hazel" is. I believe the potent, undiluted version of Hazel is now dispersing into the ether in order to further touch the many, given that her immense legacy could not be more needed at this impactful global moment.

I interviewed Hazel as our first guest on Ervin Laszlo & Fred Tsao's "Dawn of an Era of Wellbeing" podcast series. It felt like riding on the back of a comet, lol - the tail light of which continues to shine bright as an Interstellar Party Planner on Synchronistory.com (a future Party for the Planet celebrating Every Living Being, broadcast live worldwide!).

As her dear friend Jean Houston might say ... Hazel was made for these times. As Synchronistory® would say, here's to your effervescent party presence ... and to the miraculoUs. VirtuALL blessings dear Hazel. And wishes to the family and other of her beloveds.
Posted by Arlene Hopkins on May 27, 2022
Hazel's books first caught my eye circa 1980 when her book Creating Alternative Futures seemed to jump from the shelf into my eager hands in a long-gone bookstore on the 2400 block of Telegraph Avenue, Berkeley. Her books, like Hazel herself, were always at the most interesting forward intersections of ideas and culture infused with love. Missing her now ... 
Posted by Fritjof Capra on May 27, 2022
Hazel was an influential colleague and close friend of mine for over forty years, during which she decisively shaped my thinking about the intersections of economics, ecology, systems thinking, and feminism. We collaborated on numerous projects, including two books, and coauthored several articles. The memory of her great wisdom, tremendous energy, and irreverent wit will be with me forever.
An independent futurist, environmentalist, and economic iconoclast, she argued that the conceptual framework underlying the discipline of economics has become so narrow that it has driven economists into an impasse. Most economic concepts and models are no longer adequate to understand economic phenomena in a fundamentally interdependent world, and current economic policies can no longer solve our economic problems.
In nine books, numerous essays, and countless editorials, Hazel drove home this point for over four decades with an intensity, brilliance, and originality that are still unmatched today. She challenged the world's foremost economists, politicians, and corporate leaders with her well-founded critique of their fundamental concepts and values. Because of her special talent for presenting her radical ideas in a disarming, nonthreatening manner her voice was heard and respected in government and corporate circles; she held an impressive number of advisory positions and cofounded and directed numerous organizations, in which her new ways of thinking have been elaborated and applied.
In her early work, Hazel was inspired by her friend E.F. Schumacher, author of the pioneering book Small is Beautiful, and prophet of the ecology movement. She helped arrange for his first lectures in the United States, and he wrote the Foreword to her first book. Like Schumacher, Henderson criticized the fragmentation in current economic thinking, the absence of values, the obsession of economists with unqualified economic growth, and their failure to take into account our dependence on the natural world. Like Schumacher, she extended her critique to modern technology and advocated a profound reorientation of our economic and technological systems, based on the use of renewable resources and attention to the human scale.
But Hazel went beyond Schumacher both in her critique and in her outline of alternatives. Her writings offer a rich mixture of theory and activism. Each point of her critique is substantiated by numerous illustrations and statistical data; each suggestion for alternative futures is accompanied by countless concrete examples and references to books, articles, manifestos, projects, and activities of grass-roots organizations. Her focus was not limited to economics and technology but deliberately included politics. In fact, in one of her celebrated aphorisms she asserted that "economics is merely politics in disguise."
Hazel's style of speaking and writing was unique. In her efforts to create new maps of economic, social, and ecological interdependence, she constantly sought to break out of the linear mode of thinking. She did so with great verbal virtuosity, showing a distinct flair for catchy phrases and deliberately outrageous statements. Academic economics, for Hazel, was "a form of brain damage;" Wall Street was chasing "funny money," and Washington was engaged in "the politics of the Last Hurrah," while her own efforts were directed toward "defrocking the economic priesthood," announcing "the end of flat-earth economics," and promoting a "politics of reconceptualization."
In her new ecological framework, Hazel did not limit herself to the conceptual aspects. She emphasized throughout her work that the reexamination of economic concepts and models needs to deal, at the deepest level, with the underlying value system. Many of the current social and economic problems, she argued, will then be seen to have their roots in the painful adjustments of individuals and institutions to the changing values of our time. For Hazel, these new but also ancient values were the values of deep ecology — ultimately, the values of an Earth-oriented spirituality.
In her reflections on technology, Hazel pointed out that the masculine consciousness that dominates our culture has found its fulfillment in a certain "macho" technology, a technology bent on manipulation and control rather than cooperation, suitable for central management rather than regional and local applications by individuals and small groups. As a result, Hazel observed, most technologies today have become profoundly anti-ecological, unhealthy, and inhuman. They need to be replaced by new forms of technology, she affirmed, technologies that incorporate ecological principles and values.
Hazel dedicated the last two decades of her life to documenting the emergence of green, ethical, and just technologies, economies, financial investments, and lifestyles. Her work and life always embodied a unique blend of theory and activism. As she would have put it herself, she walked her talk.
Posted by Elisabet Sahtouris on May 27, 2022
Just coming out of my grief fog enough to write here. How can I even begin to put words to my everlasting awe of my dear sister Hazel? In 1991 I was her first "scholar in residence" giving us ample time for long beach walks and bike rides over several months. No friend has ever been so utterly dedicated to our Earth Mother, so brilliantly and tirelessly productive in showing humanity the way forward in harmony with Her, up to her very last breath. So many long and fruitful conversations since those bonding beach walks, so many other cherished memories! She has earned her wings now with the highest honors and while I wish her restful yet joyous peace and amazing grace, I suspect she is already busy continuing her amazing work on all our behalf.
Posted by Byron Kennard on May 27, 2022
FROM BYRON KENNARD

Hazel Henderson is not the sort of person who dies. She is the sort of person who lives forever. I assume that’ll be the case.

I remember what great fun she had exposing the underbelly of economics. That’s a contribution to civilization that should insure her immortality.

Lawyers are hired guns and everybody knows it, including the lawyers. Economists are hired guns too, but few people knew it until Hazel came along to broadcast the fact — boldly, at every opportunity, and with devastating wit.

Economists have never forgiven her.

Economists like to pose as impartial scientists engaged in the search for truth. The truth, however, is that many of them are on the receiving end of fat consulting fees from special interests.

“Economics is not a science,” Hazel shouted from the rooftops! “There’s nothing scientific about it!”  

She knew that the true function of economics is to provide an intellectual smokescreen to disguise the grasping of the greedy.

Economics is a handy excuse for not doing the right thing.

Hazel knew that economics does not and cannot value the truly important things in life, such as the nurturing of children, the loving care of aging parents, or unpaid, voluntary service to the community. 

One more thing. Hazel never went to college and it showed. Her capacious mind was not packed with “academic” junk which was necessary later to discard. She saw everything clearly and cleanly from the word go.
Posted by Riane Eisler on May 26, 2022
Hazel was my good friend and sister in the work of building a better future, and I will miss her terribly! She was amazingly bright and knowledgeable, and her influence on creating a caring economics was enormous. in my book The Real Wealth of Nations she is extensively credited for her influence on me and the book. She leaves a great legacy, from her practical ideas about moving beyond fossil fuels, corruption, and other ills to her groundbreaking work on what she called the love economy: the caring work done in households, primarily by women, which must be recognized and rewarded in ways that put food on the table and a roof over a family's head. Hazel was fun, I loved her humor. She was also such a generous person, who recognized the importance of the work of others, like of my husband, David Loye, who wrote about the real Darwin and moral sensitivity, and predeceased Hazel by just a few months. He and I spoke with Hazel shortly before his death, and it is still hard for me to believe she is too is now gone. But I know her legacy will live on!
Posted by Jacques Chirazi on May 26, 2022
Hazel was a wonderful teacher, role model, guide and friend. She will be terribly missed but loved always, she made a difference in so many people's lives and her legacy and immense contributions will continue to shape and influence current and future generations.

Hazel devotion, energy, spirit, legacy, and generosity will be with us forever.

With love and gratitude,
Posted by Monica Sharma on May 26, 2022
Hazel's immense and significant contribution to our aching world will continue to influence our thinking and actions to presence equity. I will miss our regular conversations -- Hazel, a dear friend, an influential colleague. We shared our views on so many issues--personal and professional. And beyond our professional connection-- I dare to say publicly -- that I know she cherished my interactions with her; and I love and admire Hazel. A beautiful and rare relationship! Her humanity, her humor and fearless engagement to address structural inequities touched thousands of lives directly and millions indirectly. Hazel's creativity is profound and impactful!
Posted by Ravi Chaudhry on May 26, 2022

Words can never express the sorrow and the sense of personal loss I feel. Hazel was an esteemed friend, an outstanding mentor, and certainly one of the finest humanists that lived during the last five decades.

Her achievements and the rich legacy of knowledge and wisdom she leaves for posterity will certainly be long cherished and continue to be the guiding lighthouses in every domain of human endeavour. She always aimed for the best - nothing but the best that could possibly be conceived.

Working closely with her was one of the cherished privileges of my life and I shall forever recall her selflessness, amazing energy, and love for the entire human race and all forms of life on this planet. She enriched every life she touched - with her simplicity, humility and most of all - her readiness to offer whatever unconditional help she could - to every worthy cause and every noble person.

People like her are rare, and all of us who knew her, and worked with her, are truly blessed.

Rest in peace - Dearest Hazel.

The glow of the fires you lit in peoples' hearts will never abate till the goals you aspired for - have been fully achieved!

We will miss you, Hazel
But you shall forever be with us.
Posted by John Fullerton on May 25, 2022
I recall going to St Augustine, like going to see the wise sage, early in my own awakening. What a force of insight, wisdom, and courage - only possible in an "uneducated" woman warrior like Hazel! Bankers seeking re-education, reinvention (and redemption) were not exactly Hazel's "target audience", but I will be forever indebted to her sharp mind, her sharp tongue, and mostly her courage to respond to the universe's unique calling for her. It has been a privilege to be in her orbit and witness a true force of nature. Travel well dear Hazel. And thank you. 
Posted by Thomas Kolster on May 25, 2022
I met Hazel Anderson through the EthicsMark Awards. Always giving and thoughtful. She's been a driving force for good in the advertising and marketing industry shining a light on what can be achieved when you pour your heart into it. A true lighthouse, you'll be missed.
Posted by Peter Matthies on May 25, 2022
Hazel, what an inspiration you've been for so many . An unwavering and determined tour de force for creating a better world, and a woman with an enormous heart. You've been an example for the female leadership that would transform our world. Always present to make a positive dent in the universe, always ready to support others.
When I reached out to you as the first person to be informed about the Conscious Business Institute, you jumped right in, ready to show up and help.
I will miss your brilliance, your power, your heart, your advice, and your soul (actually, your soul probably remaining very much present).
I imagine your new experience with your dear friend, Barbara, and look forward to the time way down the road when we all reconnect. Thank you, Hazel, for being you.
Posted by Marc LUYCKX GHISI on May 25, 2022
Tribute to Hazel Henderson

Hazel Henderson is a giant of thought. She accurately predicted the current mutation that is transforming the entire world.

With Harlan Cleveland, former Vice Secretary of State of John Kennedy, she proposed, in 1990, to completely change the world security system by abolishing obsolete and costly national armies and installing a new type of World Security Agency.

I remember inviting her to Brussels in 1997, to speak to the officials of the European Commission (European Executive Power). She was so brilliant and simple at the same time, that she shook the certainties of the "best" "classical" economists of the European Commission.
She was several levels above the European intellectuals in the executive.

I had the privilege to have been chosen by her as a judge for the evaluations of "Ethical Markets". And I have excellent and inspiring memories of this job.

Dear Hazel, a great intellectual of global dimensions and 50 years ahead of the times, I thank you with all my heart for your pioneering and visionary work.
You have announced the world that is coming today.

Thank you and have a good journey in the divine light

Marc LUYCKX GHISI, PhD.
Former Member of the « Forward Sudies Unit” of the European Commission in Brussels.
Posted by Marie Stafford on May 25, 2022
I met Hazel in recent years when I began working on trends in the sustainability space. What a genuine inspiration and force of nature! Such a brilliant mind combined with unstoppable energy. She will be very sadly missed.
Posted by John Elkington on May 25, 2022
What a profound privilege - and delight - to have known and worked alongside Hazel. I first met her in the Eighties: once met, never forgotten. It is well known that she was described as the most dangerous woman in the United States at one point by those she was campaigning to civilize, and, failing that, shut down. In that sense, at least, she was one of the most dangerous people in the world for those pursuing degenerative policies and business models. Her spirit will continue to agitate for decades and generations, even if now "virtual". Love to all who miss her from this corner of the Hazelverse.
Posted by Doug Miller on May 25, 2022
Our Dear Hazel is ‘going virtual’ after an inspiring life of contribution. Her wisdom and impact will live forever in me, and us, and all.

Doug Miller
Founder
GlobeScan
Posted by Steve Schueth on May 25, 2022
A deep bow and flourish to the beautiful Hazel Henderson. A force of nature. Loving light. Friend, colleague, rabble rouser extraordinaire. Positive investing thought and action leader for 35 years. Rest in peace and relish the fruits of your labors during this most recent lifetime. And one more time, if I may: Thank you for who you are and all you do! [LinkedIn post, 05/25/2022)
Posted by Vicki Robin on May 24, 2022
Hazel called me 2 weeks ago to say goodbye. I wrote this the day after:

Hazel Henderson, wonder woman of green, science-based investing, the love economy, and the golden rule society, went virtual (her term for died) on May 22, 2022, at home, and very much at peace.

She was/is my dear friend, inspiration, goad, mentor and cheerleader.

Two weeks before she died, Ralph Nader convinced her to one more time sing every song in her intellectual repertoire – about money, finance, the non-sense of even “green” mutual funds, an economy run on the sun and everything other idea she developed over her 60+ year career. Here it is and I highly recommend you listen to clear out any cobwebs about what we are up against and fighting for.

Here‘s the official notice of her death.

If you want to write a tribute, we’ve set up this site which we imagine will be populated by thousands of people who loved her, who basked in her love.

And here’s the story I wrote two weeks ago after she called me to say goodbye:

Hazel called yesterday to say good-bye. The long forever good-bye. It was raining in Marysville and I was sitting in my car in the dealership lot after it had an EV battery transplant. I was eager to get to the ferry, as the lines these days are long, especially after 3 PM. My phone rings. It’s Hazel.

“Got a minute?”

“Literally a minute,” and I told her where I was

“I’m calling to say good-bye. You know, I never wanted to live until I was 90. I have wonderful people here with me. You know, Ms. X came, and she is running her business from here and it’s actually better for her because her main clients are in Europe so she is staying and will stay after I am gone, isn’t that marvelous, she’s launching her product now in Europe so I’m fine dear, Hospice will be here soon and they’ll give me morphine and I’ll drift away.”

So Hazel, framing every horror in the world as progress towards a civilization based on love, with evidence everywhere that we are on the brink. Her beat for sixty years has been the economy. As she and I said in one webinar: it’s the golden calf or the golden rule. She’s never been one to fuss with any evidence that all is not well, but she is no light headed fool. She is just unwavering from the truth of an abundant world if we heed the golden rule, and has books, articles, interviews to substantiate, with her British accent and contralto voice, her claims. She is a self-taught economist who has keynoted an infinite number of conferences of highly placed economists, financial advisors, government officials, activists.

“I just did an hour and a half webinar with Ralph Nader, my dear. It was wonderful. He just let me bang on. I just blasted everyone with the truth of the golden rule. Gave a keynote to a group of portfolio managers. Told them their sustainability EFTs were rubbish, a marketing ploy, as bad as the rest and with more fees. I’m having so much fun. Just blasting the truth. That’s the thing, my dear. Just tell the truth and enjoy yourself.”

By now I’m sobbing.

“I’m sorry Hazel, I can’t help it. I can’t believe I will never hear your voice again.”

“Of course you will, my dear, oh I love you so much! I just did an interview with Ralph Nader, you can listen to that. Listen, it’s all arranged. I never meant to last until I’m 90. I’ve always planned to go virtual. I’m going to join my dear sister Barbara out there.”

“I mean your voice. Talking.” I think she was crying a bit even though she meant to stay firm in her celebration that all was well, she’d left everything tidy, in good hands, all her books, her articles, her lectures and webinars. Barbara is Barbara Marx Hubbard, a prolific visionary who spoke of our transformation into a new self, a new humanity. Hazel said they’d joke that Barbara was focused on the cosmos and Hazel was the Earth Mother.

The movie of Hazel in my life was now running.

“You have given me so much. You have been such an inspiration.”

My mind presents me with the image the first time I met hazel, a tall, vibrant blonde in a brilliantly colored sheath, who rose when called to the stage, grabbed an overhead slide, slapped it on the projector and then unpacked the visual of the layer cake economy. She used this overhead every time she spoke. For years. And years. Never tiring of explaining it because it was both the truth of the matter and an incantation from a good witch, a spell to wake us from the trance of scarcity.

Fifty percent of the economy rests of the unpaid work of women and families and communities, she would say referring to the lower two layers of the cake. This is the unrecognized wealth, unacknowledged, and devalued, but the world would not work without this 50% which isn’t even calculated in the economy. The financial system is like the icing, but we think it’s all there is.

Boom. With that she’d bust the illusion of a clockwork economy that is a cornucopia of goods for those who play by its rules. In other words, the story fed to every one of us, the mother’s milk of our society taught in schools, universities, media, books, so universal that we can’t recognize the simple truth that we would bang on in Your Money or Your Life. You are primary. Your life energy. Money is secondary, something you choose to trade your life energy for. Wake up. Wake up.

I saw that layer cake and the picture clicked in. I’d never studied economics, I was just passionate about not destroying the earth, and consumerism was the windmill I tilted and Hazel in that moment showed me the wool the financial system pulls over our eyes.

I loved her immediately and revered her for her certainty, her beauty, her fearless slapping an old transparency on an overhead projector and stepping to the podium to speak with no script, no outline, no funny story at the beginning and 3 main points and a call to action, just the truth, spoken with such good humor, to a workshop at a conference I attended, and over the years to vast halls of experts.

And there I was, with my speech all prepared, but aspiring to be such a truth teller.

The movie of Hazel in my life kept running as I sobbed and she comforted me that really her voice was everywhere, and she would be with her friend Barbara and would never really leave us.

I convened a group of the simpler living authors and activists I most admired to form something like a “trade association” – to work together as a team to lift up the humble lifeways of simplicity in the face of the tsunami of consumerism. And there was Hazel in opening circle of 20 or so and when her turn came, she said, “Vicki invited me and I always say yes to Vicki.” How can it be that you are your heroine’s heroine?

Many years passed. I’d gone on to other issues, including personal issues having nothing to do with changing anything other than my prospects for being alive. Hazel stayed true to her defrocking the financial system’s lie. Eventually I circled back to the money theme, having updated my book and discovered an entire nerdy cult of early retirement devotees for whom my book was one of the bibles. A conference invitation put me close to where Hazel lives in Florida so I invited myself to visit her. She was over the moon delighted as if I were her daughter or best friend or long-lost cousin. We spent days together, walking the beach, lounging by her pool, sharing stories – mostly Hazel sharing hers. The big fish she was spearing were cultured gems to disable the gem mining industry, and salt water agriculture to disable the grip of industrial agriculture on feeding the world. She always had a spear out, to catch one industry after another in their weak flank, always protecting the life of this earth.

I remember sitting in her Florida sun room where she’d hosted gathering after gathering of world changers and realizing I’d forgotten entirely that I was one of those. I decided that no matter what I was doing, it was, somehow, going to be about addressing climate change, whether the people listening to me liked it or not. I wanted to get at least half way back to how Hazel saw me.

In the four years since, she’s included me in the inner circles of her life, invited me to do webinars with her, and always saw us as sisters in the big work of making the golden rule, not the golden calf, the OS for society. We’ve talked monthly in a small sisterhood. I do my local work not thinking of it as world changing at all, just doing what I can where I am, and Hazel always whooped with enthusiasm and found value in every scrap.

Truth is, I never felt as amazing as Hazel believed I was but drank in her belief and perhaps it was like an elevator elevating my work to the level she saw it.

These movies ran as she matter-of-factly said her goodbyes on the phone in my car in the rain in a car dealership in an industrial section of Marysville.

“It’s going to be a shit show for the next 5 years. Tell the truth and enjoy doing it.”

“I love you so much, Hazel. You have been my teacher, mentor, friend. I would have done none of it without your inspiration.”

“I love you my dear. I’ve always loved you. You have always been the real deal, the Golden Rule.”

And we hung up because she was repeating herself and I needed to let loose and those really were the best final words. I cried big heaving gulps of grief and gave myself space to do so until I was ready to drive on.

It seems now, a day later, that this is her final gift, to step graciously towards death as it comes for her, thrilled about her life, knowing we didn’t stop the harm we sought to stop and a shit show was coming but no regrets and all encouragement to speak truth and enjoy my life.

“Don’t worry dear. I’ll have hospice. They’ll give me morphine and off I’ll go to my sister Barbara. I’m very happy. I love you.”

And thus, she taught me what to do and how to live and how to exit and that if there is another there, we’ll be there together.

Finally, here’s Hazel’s mantra, taped to her fridge and other places in her sprawling St Augustine home:

Each Day I recommit myself to the
almighty power of universal
love and the evolutionary life
force of which I am a small part.
I will always be guided by this
source of my eternal being and
will walk in faith and hope for
life on this earth and always
seek those who share this knowing
as my companions in love and
light. I balance my energy in joy and serving my highest purpose — my universal self.

Posted by Peter Harnik on May 24, 2022
Hazel was a great influence on me as I was becoming an environmental activist in the early 1970s, first with Environmental Action and then with National Sun Day in 1977. She showed me how important economics is to all environmental policies, and also how wrongly economics is being used by our policy-makers when confronting environmental problems. Her brilliance and her rhetorical pyrotechnics were breathtaking -- when she got involved in an issue it truly felt like God was on our side, or Goddess really. A particular high point for me was a triumvirate enterprise with Hazel and Byron Kennard to conceptualize and launch Environmentalists for Full Employment. Of course, it was Hazel's initial brainstorm: if the media was claiming that "environmentalists were killing jobs," we would show that we are actually creating jobs. This is somewhat commonplace by now, but it was a shockingly unique idea back then -- a tribute to Hazel's creativity. A few years later, I worked with her husband, Carter, on another insightful, contrarian campaign that he and Hazel conceptualized -- the idea that gas rationing coupons should be given to all citizens, not just car drivers, enabling non-drivers to sell their coupons and be rewarded for being bicyclists, walkers and other non-polluters. (The gasoline crisis eased before rationing was instituted, but the U.S. Energy Department's Tina Hobson was so intrigued that she held hearings on the topic around the country.) I didn't know Hazel when she was in New York, but visiting her handsome home in Princeton, N.J. was always a real intellectual and hospitable treat, and my wife and I still treasure the beautiful large blue Dansk casserole pot that she regifted us for our wedding. Hazel's intellect will be missed, but her vast output of ideas and analysis will continue to inspire and educate us for years to come.

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Joan Anderson on June 30, 2022
Dearest Hazel, 
It has taken me a while to be able to put my feelings about your "going virtual" into words. You have been such a precious mentor to me in so many ways. I first encountered your work through the writings of Fritjof Capra, another great teacher for me, in May 1997, when I had completed a few days of a Buddhist peace walk in Cambodia. The timing was somehow very significant, and when I moved to Japan later that year to work for the SGI Buddhist group, I was overjoyed to hear that you would be coming to Japan and meeting with Daisaku Ikeda, our international president.

Over the next few years, I had the great joy of meeting you several times on your visits to Japan, and your connection with SGI and Mr. Ikeda deepened to the point that you coauthored the wonderful dialogue "Planetary Citizenship." Several times, I had the pleasure of interviewing you for the SGI Quarterly magazine over the phone - pre zoom days! 

Every time I encountered you, my mind was left buzzing and my spirit lifted by your clear-sighted courage, your brilliance and your incisive criticism of the financial and social status quo. I had an unvoiced and unfulfilled dream of writing your biography, as I felt that more people should know about your incredible contributions to environmental activism, ways of thinking about the great casino of the financial system and the love economy etc. etc. I was glad we could introduce you in the Seeds of Hope exhibition as a peerless example of an empowered individual.

The happiest time I spent with you was when I seized the chance to join you for a profound discussion on the future of democracy at your home at the end of 2018. I was so grateful to be able to spend those days with you and other brilliant minds, and then to stay on for a couple of days to see the beauty of St. Augustine, and talk much more - and go with you to the local gym, the beach and the craft market. Those days are really precious memories. 

I loved how you were always so happy to always encourage young women who were embarking on their own journeys. And how you read everything - and remembered it!!

I miss you, and I salute you, and I believe you will continue to shape my life even beyond this particular journey. You are always in my prayers and heart. Nam-myoho-renge-kyo!

With deepest love and thanks,
Joanxxxx
Posted by Mike Sandler on June 5, 2022
I read some of Hazel's writings in college while trying to extract myself from conventional economics and trying to figure out what ecological economics was. Thank goodness for her foresight! I was also very impressed how she defined her own career path and struck out on her own as a sustainability futurist. We need more of those! I only met her briefly at a conference in 2001, but I still remember Hazel vividly, she had a real presence. She was so influential and on all the right topics and we are walking in her footsteps and standing on her shoulders.
Posted by Curtis Michelson on June 4, 2022
In 1990, the movie MindWalk arrived, and there was a showing of the film in Miami, coinciding with Miami-Dade county's kickoff of the Biscayne Bay restoration project and some other fledgling green initiatives. I grew up in Miami and was still living there at the time. Now I'm in Orlando.

Hazel and Fritjof Kapra (author of The Tao of Physics) were invited to keynote and spur discussion around the movie and what it means for Cities like Miami. And they sure did.

I was there, in the audience that day. I had recently read Tao of Physics and was a fan of Kapra's work. But I had no idea who Henderson was. She stepped up to a podium and I can recall her saying almost right away, "economics is a profession, not a science" and I fell in love.

I had just graduated with a BA in Philosophy from Florida International University, my college sweetheart had just dumped me, and now I was falling hard for Hazel. in Love with with her ideas, her beautiful British accent, her piercing blue eyes, and her humble wit. I bought her book Politics of the Solar Age on the spot, and had her sign the copy. Alas, somewhere in my many travels, I lost that book. But I do remember asking Hazel as she was signing my copy, "how do I become a Futurist?", and she looked at me with a smile, not really an answer.

I can't recall all the details of that day, but I do remember that both presenters made powerful impressions on me and the audience. They were different each in their own way. Kapra was a scientist, a systems thinker. Henderson a futurist, trained by Bucky Fuller. He offered a European view, rooted in the Green party movement. He said "not left, not right, but forward". She talked very practically about 'earth accounting' and quantifiably valuing earth resources along with labor, capital and the rest. She had an eco-feminist sensibility too. She wanted all the free labor of women caring for families to be accounted for too.

Something that day shifted where I would go with my life. I could have pursued endless academia. But I moved to Nicaragua and learned Spanish and became for a short time a 'Sandalista'. (Birkenstok wearing Sandinista fan boy). Certain people open wormholes to your potential, to where you can go. Hazel I'm sure did that for me. I didn't know what a Futurist really was, but something about it, was for me. She spurred me to apply knowledge, make connections, and to change things.

My only personal regret, besides losing my signed copy of her book, is that I didn't pay a personal visit to Hazel Henderson. She only lived a few hours up the road from me in St. Augustine, Florida. Maybe I could have even been mentored as she was mentored by Buckminster. We enneagram Fours are full of melancholy. But my sweet loss is tempered by the joy of knowing she will be remembered as the canary who sang sweetly in the coal mine. Hopefully the world will listen.

Coda:
The Miami-Dade county commissioner, wish I could remember his name, who paid for Henderson and Kapra to be there was a brave lone voice in Miami back then. Miami politics would continue to be dominated by drugs and corruption and environmental issues took a long back seat. Only now in the past 5 years has South Florida started to really honestly wrestle with the seawater washing up onto its skyline. The flood has come. And all of us who didn't hear or heed the words of folks like Henderson and Kapra back then, are paying and will pay a steep price for it.
Recent stories

ASBN Honors the Life and Legacy of Hazel Henderson

Shared by Aleta Edwards on May 25, 2022
The American Sustainable Business Network is deeply saddened by the news of Hazel Henderson’s passing. Hazel was a longtime collaborator, partner, and member of ASBN whose impact was felt throughout the organization. 

“Hazel was pioneer that helped catalyzed a new understanding of how we can be in the world – how we can build a safer, healthier, greener sustainable economy,” said David Levine, president and co-founder of ASBN. “Working with her for 40 years has been a tremendous gift and privilege.” 

A bold visionary, world-renowned futurist, evolutionary economist, worldwide syndicated columnist, consultant on sustainable development, and award-winning author, Hazel dedicated her life to campaigning for social change in a world that did not make it easy for women economists.

In 2004, Hazel founded Ethical Markets Media, a media company that strives to promote a global economy that is sustainable, green, ethical, and just.

Once called “the most dangerous woman in America” by the Public Relations Society of America for her pioneering work, Hazel was known for challenging economic norms in favor of more ethical standards that benefit all. 

“Hazel was the preeminent triple-bottom-line economist of the era,” said Mark Donohue, founder of LifeGuides. “She brought intellectual rigor, a powerful and prolific pen, and a magnetic personality of authentic caring for all. Hazel was a warrior for creating a humane, just, and regenerative economic system.”

For more on Hazel’s extraordinary life and accomplishments, visit Ethical Markets.