Rebecca Mills is an Impact Strategist and Founder of the Transformation Agency, The Lever Room. The Lever Room works at the intersection of innovation and sustainability, actively supporting people, organisations and movements to have positive impact at scale. Their approach has been crafted from over a decade of working at the forefront of regenerative development and the science of impact.
Rebecca is known for her abilities to think holistically to create practical solutions that are win-wins for people, profit and nature. She was a founding team member of Sir Richard Branson’s B Team, Homestar, The Edmund Hilary Fellowship and Te Awaroa: Voice of the River.
Rebecca holds a Certificate in Disruptive Innovation from Harvard Business School (HBX) and a Master of Science and Technology (First Class, First Division) from Waikato University.
Rebecca has worked across scales, countries, and also across government, not-for-profit and business sectors. Through her career, which started as a biosphere scientist, she has come to believe that there is a need to use system thinking (understand the entire system, and interactions between the various components,) to create the most impactful solutions. The depth and breadth of her experience allows her the perspective to identify leverage points, unlocking regenerative, profitable outcomes that match the needs of those she works with.
Rebecca dedicated 2 years to help shape and build the startup which is now known as The B Team. The B Team is a global initiative (founded by Sir Richard Branson and Jochen Zeitz), which ambitiously put, seeks to change the way the world does business. As the first person working full time on the start up, Rebecca worked closely with the global advisory board she helped bring together. Working with fellow advisors she framed initial discussions and thinking that defined areas of focus for the B Team. These focus areas are now communicated as 10 ‘challenges’, which together create the Agenda of Plan B.
Homstar is the world’s first independent tool to rate the sustainability, health and comfort of homes. In the video above Jane Henley (The World Bank Group), gives her insight into both the development of ‘Homestar’ and her personal experience working with Rebecca to build it.
Prior to launching The Lever Room Rebecca led the impact evaluation and sustainable design process for a number of large-scale masterplans across London and South East England during a period of rapid growth in the Thames Gateway region. During this time she played key roles in the regeneration of Greenwich Peninsula, and the development of the Sustainability and Energy strategies for London 2012 Olympics. Rebecca had previously led the assessment of large coastal and renewable energy projects (including geothermal, hydro and wind) in New Zealand.
Rebecca is interested in the idea of New Zealand being a ‘purpose-led innovation nation’ and has played a central role in building bridges to connect world-class talent, impact capital, and high-tech innovation to the New Zealand startup ecosystem.
In 2017 Rebecca was invited to produce the closing workshop for the global experimental knowledge lab 'The Unschool' . She’s acted as a mentor for numerous change making programmes including the renowned ‘Unreasonable Labs’ 5-day accelerators for early-stage entrepreneurs devoted to solving the world's biggest problems.
Her work coaching young people resulted in her being the first person in New Zealand to be selected as a 'Global Shaper' by the World Economic Forum. Once selected she went on to curate and build NZ's first Global Shaper Hub, in Auckland.