Dr. Michael Raß
Since mid-September 2016, Dr.-Ing. Michael Raß has been a partner and managing director of fjol GmbH.
Michael Raß brings extensive first-hand experience from his time as founder and managing partner of the Teutoburger Ölmühle (oil mill) to fjol. His expertise is in the fields of recycling, efficient and resource-conserving production, sustainable procurement in global supply chains and successful sustainability marketing in dialogue with commerce and consumers.
Since 2009 he has also been a member of the ZNU (Center for Sustainable Corporate Leadership) at the University of Witten/Herdecke. As a trained and responsible sustainability manager, in 2012 he introduced the ZNU sustainability standard “Sustainable Economy Food” to the Teutoburger Ölmühle.
Michael Raß had developed the Teutoburger Öhlmühle into the German market leader for cold-pressed rapeseed oils and organic, edible oil specialties until his departure from the company in May 2016. The Teutoburger Ölmühle has received numerous innovation and sustainability awards as a flagship sustainable company in the industry, among others the “German Entrepreneur Award” in 2007.
After completing his schooling and apprenticeship as a general mechanic, he studied for a degree in Energy and Process Engineering at the University of Essen. Subsequently, Michael Raß worked as a research assistant at the University of Essen in the area of food processing technology and did his Ph.D. on the topic “Environmentally Friendly Oilseed Processing”. In 2000, he founded the Teutoburger Öhlmühle (Teutoburg oil mill) as a greenfield investment in Ibbenbüren, North-Rhine Westphalia. Michael Raß is married and has two adult children.
Dr. Axel Kölle
Dr. Axel Kölle, together with Dr. Christian Geßner, is a founder and director of the ZNU Center for Sustainable Corporate Leadership in the Faculty of Economics at the University of Witten/Herdecke.
In addition to managing the institute, Axel Koelle is active in research, teaching, training and consulting. In the summer of 2011, he founded fjol GmbH, together with Christian Geßner, to help companies to implement sustainability in a sound and spirited way.
Dr. rer. pol. Axel Kölle studied Economic Geography (specializing in Environmental Economics and Environmental Law) at the Universities of Münster and Heidelberg and received his Ph.D at the University of Witten/Herdecke (UW/H) in the field of Economics (subject: Risk Management as a Strategic Instrument for Sustainable Management – Illustrated by example of the Food Industry).
Axel Kölle has been involved in further education and consulting since starting his career as a consultant and trainer at the Fresenius Academy, and since 2003, in research and teaching at the University of Witten/Herdecke. Axel Kölle is married and has two sons and one daughter.
Dr. Christian Geßner
Dr. Christian Geßner, together with Dr. Axel Kölle, is founder and director of the ZNU Center for Sustainable Corporate Leadership in the Faculty of Economics at the University of Witten/Herdecke.
Apart from the institute management, Christian Geßner is active in research, teaching, training and consulting. In the summer of 2011, he founded fjol GmbH, together with Axel Kölle, to help companies to implement sustainability in a sound and spirited way.
Dr. Oec. Christian Geßner studied Economics in Münster and Heidelberg and received his Ph.D in Economics in Hohenheim on the topic of “Entrepreneurial Sustainability Strategies”. Christian Geßner is married and has two sons.
Senior Consultant & Head of Marketing
Patricia Kief is senior consultant at fjol since April 2018. She mainly supports FMCG companies in the individual implementation of a sustainability management system. Through her many years of experience with branded companies in the food industry, she knows the challenges companies are facing during the (further) development of sustainable topics. Her focus is on strategic planning and development of sustainability roadmaps, sustainability communication and prevention of crises as well as the analysis and dialogue with stakeholders.
Patricia Kief was working in the food industry for 20 years. At first, she was junior product manager and product manager in the field of Food Service at Dr. Oetker Nahrungsmittel KG. Subsequently, she was trade marketing manager of brands like Uncle Ben´s and Ebly as well as the confectionery brands Mars, Snickers, Twix, Bounty, Milky Way, Balisto and Celebrations. Later, she was marketing and sustainability manager at Ornua Deutschland GmbH and responsible for the umbrella brand communication of the brand Kerrygold in Germany. Within this position she implemented and further developed the ZNU standard – “driving sustainable change” from 2013 onwards.
Patricia Kief studied economics at the University of Paderborn and Université du Maine in France. She specialised in marketing and international management.
Lynn Arabelle Alber
Lynn Arabelle Alber is senior consultant at fjol. She mainly supports FMCG companies in the individual implementation of a sustainability management system ans in the implementation of the ZNU sustainability standard across the entire sustainability path.
Lynn Arabelle Alber studied Business Administration with a focus on logistics (B.A.) in Berlin and gained practical experience in the analysis and optimisation of value chains during her dual bachelor’s degree. She then completed her master’s degree in International Management (M.Sc.) in Bochum and South Africa, focusing on innovation, strategy, circular economy, and sustainability.
Senior Consultant & Coach
Jadwiga Zurad has got over ten years of international experience in the fields of sustainable business and entrepreneurship, development of sustainability strategies, leadership coaching, personal development, facilitation and training. She has been working as a senior consultant and coach for fjol since the beginning of 2016. The focus of her work is the development and implementation of innovative coaching and further training measures on the topics of sustainable corporate management, development of leadership personalities, organizational learning, personnel development and change management. In addition, Jadwiga Zurad assists the clients in developing their company’s corporate values, their vision and the roadmaps to sustainability, thereby supporting a more sustainable corporate culture and more effective strategy implementation.
Since 2006, Jadwiga Zurad has worked in multicultural teams at think tanks such as the ZNU Center for Sustainable Corporate Leadership, the UNEP Collaborating Center on Sustainable Consumption and Production (CSCP), the Center for Systems Solutions (CRS), the Sendzimir Foundation and Zawila Business Park. Jadwiga Zurad studied Environmental Engineering (M.Sc. Eng.), Sustainability and Psychology, has been trained as a professional coach by the CTI – Coaching Training Institute, and has completed many further qualification programs for trainers and facilitators. She has received numerous awards for scientists in the field of sustainability, including the prestigious award of the German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU).
Verena Timmer has been working for fjol since 2014. She assists companies to develop sustainability strategies and stakeholder engagement processes. In this context, she also advises clients on the development of materiality analyses and on the consideration of stakeholder interests (e.g. implementation and evaluation of stakeholder surveys).
Apart from the analysis of customer and supplier interests, stakeholder consideration also includes the interests of employees and the associated company culture.
Furthermore, she supports clients in conducting hot-spot analyses, thereby applying sustainability to the product level and implementing a more sustainable product development.
Verena Timmer studied Home Economics and Nutritional Sciences before moving her focus to sustainability management.
Andrea Rohde is consultant at fjol. Since 2019 she has been supporting companies as a consultant in climate and life cycle assessment as well as in the collection and evaluation of company KPIs in the areas of water, packaging and waste. She has several years of experience in the topics of climate strategy, accounting and neutrality, science-based targets and other environmental indicators in the food trade.
Andrea Rohde graduated in Economics (B.Sc.) from the TU Dortmund University and specialised in sustainability solutions for companies in her Master in Sustainability and Consultancy (M.Sc.) at the University of Southampton.
Markus Laumann has been working for fjol since September 2016 on the topics of climate and life cycle assessment, packaging, water and food waste. Since 2015, he has been working as a research assistant at the ZNU and actively within the research project “LeDaNa” (Food Waste Data for more Sustainability in the Food Industry) sponsored by the Ministry of the Environment of North-Rhine Westphalia. Markus Laumann studied Economics and Philosophy (B.A.) at the University of Osnabrück with a focus on growth theory, overall economic well-being, as well as ethics in economics and management. Subsequently, he completed a Master’s degree in Economics at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, focusing on the topics of international trade theory and sustainable energy and resource economics.
Robin Frank supports companies in the implementation of the ZNU sustainability standard across the entire sustainability path. Furthermore, he works on the topics of climate accounting, food loss measurement, and supply chain due diligence compliance.
Robin Frank studied business administration (B.Sc.) at the Business and Information Technology School in Iserlohn and South Africa and gained in-depth experience in the data-driven optimisation of production and supply chains through practical work in various industrial companies. In his master’s degree in Controlling at the Westfälische-Wilhelms-Universität in Münster, he specialised in the measurement and communication of corporate sustainability performance.
Buket Dumlupinar is consultant since 2019. She supports the team for climate assessments and product life cycle analyses. She studied Sustainable Product Management (B.A.) and focused on Industrial Ecology methods during her master’s degree in Life Cycle and Sustainability (M.Sc.) at Pforzheim University.
Buket Dumlupinar gained experience in the areas of sustainable product development, environmental and energy management systems as well as sustainability reporting during various practical activities. She also worked in the corporate research department of an automobile manufacturer and was involved in the life cycle assessment of alternative materials for interior components.
Philipp Schmitt supports the team as a consultant. He works on the topics of climate and life cycle assessment as well as the implementation of the “ZNU standard – driving sustainable change” across the entire sustainability path.
Philipp Schmitt studied business administration (B.Sc.) at the Westfälische-Wilhelms-Universität (WWU) in Münster and in Chile. In his Master of Science in Business Administration at the WWU in Münster and at the Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, he specialized in management, management consulting and corporate sustainability issues. He gained practical experience in the development of climate protection strategies and balance sheets for ICT, trade, and energy companies, among others.
Anneke Schaardt supports companies in implementing the “ZNU standard – driving sustainable change” across the entire sustainability path since 2020.
Anneke Schaardt studied Environmental Sciences and Business Psychology at Leuphana University Lüneburg and the Master “Sustainability, Society and the Environment” in Kiel. She gained practical experience as an experiential educator, freelance speaker for sustainable development and through her work within the project “Innovation-oriented Network StartUp SH”. Within the network, she supported people in founding social-ecological projects and companies for almost five years.
Lisa Hömmken supports the team as a junior consultant. She works on the implementation of the “ZNU standard – driving sustainable change” across the entire sustainability path. Furthermore, she assists the management of fjol with regard to the strategic further development of sustainability consulting in the FMCG industry.
Lisa Hömmken studied Oecotrophology (B.Sc.) at Münster University of Applied Sciences and Drexel University in Philadelphia. She then focused on the topics of sustainability management, communication, and sustainability assessment in value chains, among others, in her master’s degree in Sustainable Services and Food Management (M.Sc.).
Hannah Henke has been part of our team since 2023. As a junior consultant, she supports companies in implementing the “ZNU standard – driving sustainable change” across the entire sustainability path.
Hannah Henke studied psychology (B.A.) at the Ruhr University Bochum and West Virgina University in the USA. She then completed her Master’s degree in Environmental Psychology (M.Sc.) at Groningen University in the Netherlands, where she conducted research on environmental self-identity and positive spillover effects in pro-environmental behavior.
Franziska Budde supports the team as a junior consultant since 2023. She works on the implementation of the “ZNU standard – driving sustainable change” across the entire sustainability path.
Franziska Budde studied International Business (B.B.A.) at the Hanze International Business School in Groningen and in Cuernavaca, where she researched the constructive application of sustainability performance indicators. In parallel, she gained experience in the field of holistic sustainable development and corporate sustainability performance measurement through practical work in NGOs and industry.