A duty to environmental stewardship is something Amazon does not take lightly—nor does Mark Tanner ’14, ’17 M.S., the global environmental leader at Amazon Air. He is responsible for all environmental impacts at the company’s air sites, creating programs and processes that better care for ecological resources and fulfilling Amazon’s commitment to sustainability.
In this role, Tanner has realized just how vital an understanding of a product’s lifecycle is.
“I have learned more about waste disposal than I thought was possible in my last six months in this role. I look at the way water drains—and where it ends up—in a way that I never considered before.”
He encourages anyone looking for environmental progress within their company to keep an eye on the end of the lifecycle of the things you consume.
“Be good stewards of the resources we are given. Every item we use today must have an end disposition,” he says.
Tanner’s career began in the U.S. Navy before moving into retail management and regional supply chain management. Then, the hard times of the recession shifted his career and led Tanner to Florida Tech. He credits his degrees—a bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance and a master’s degree in supply chain management—for opening up the opportunities that led to his current role.
“When I realized that my career had stalled, I knew that I needed a catalyst, which proved to be my education from Florida Tech,” Tanner says. “As I have progressed in my career, I realize now that this was an intricate mechanism for my development, and I would not be where I am today if not for my education.”
Tanner advanced through procurement roles of increasing responsibility at Amazon and found his team partnering with the environmental team when the pandemic began, leading the company’s health and safety procurement initiatives. From this, he was offered his current role, leading the environmental team for all Amazon Air sites globally.
Besides his positive ecological impacts, Tanner also takes his responsibility to coach the managers in his charge very seriously. He serves as an emotional intelligence ambassador, creating better work-life harmony within the organization. He also coaches veterans and transitioning military on how to translate their valuable skills to a civilian career.
Early Bird or Night Owl: Night owl
TV Show of the Moment: “Deadliest Catch”
Your Superpower: Parenting
Alternate Career: Business owner
Your Theme Song: Tim McGraw’s “Humble and Kind”
Pets: A dog, Kona, and seven chickens
Usual Weekend Activity: Projects at our 41-year-old house we bought
Your Happy Place: On a run wherever I happen to be
Favorite Florida Tech Memory: Graduation—it was my first time on campus.
This piece was featured in the fall 2021 edition of Florida Tech Magazine.