April 22 marks this year’s World Earth Day - a reminder of the importance of environmental conservation and sustainability, and a chance for us to come together and take action for a healthier planet and brighter future.

Throughout the week, we’ll be shining a spotlight on our stellar roster of judges for the Impact League’s third focus-area, Climate Action: Innovating for a Low Carbon Future. As the teams await the results of this third, integral stage of the race to the podium for the planet, we get to know the creative minds behind the judging panel - who inspires them, what’s driving them, and how we can learn from one another in our collective efforts for championing better sport, and a better planet.

Season 4// Guest Impact League Judge Sam Sutaria

Sam Sutaria is the CEO of WaterBear, a purpose-driven streaming platform that uses storytelling to drive global impact. Sam is a passionate conservationist, photographer and deeply committed to transforming systems across the media industry.

Here, he reflects on what brought him into the industry, his ambitions for cultural collaboration, and the best advice he was given in his youth:

“I am a nature nerd at heart, I studied biology and worked in conservation in my twenties. I have spent a lot of my life outdoors exploring - from hosting travel experiences in Romania to Belize to the US - and, post a Masters in Film + Documentary, took my camera with me everywhere. It all started in the Madagascan jungle on a research project when I was 19. I will never forget that…

Our biggest issue as society right now is that we have lost our connection to the natural world, and we are in desperate need of a values shift. Our massive belief at WaterBear is that everyone can be a change maker, they might just not know it yet. Activating that inner imperfect activist is a huge driver for me. Witnessing those moments never gets old. I once took a group of young offenders up to Scotland to experience nature for the first time - it changed my life forever, and hopefully theirs in some way too. If you think about one thing: how you can use what you enjoy - or are good at - to help others find their path.

Like SailGP, a big ambition is to build cultural collaborations that broaden the base community around our work. Sport is of course a huge area of interest - but we are also massive music fans. If Björk was up for a chat, we would do something very cool - she’s been on our hit list for a while!

I am not so good at looking backwards, I think I need to change that. I was always told to slow down as a child; I think that is good advice. We like to think of our work as a slower media movement, with a new definition of what success is. I massively admire ambitious and impactful leaders who wrap their success up in kindness and compassion - I have so much to learn!”