Patrick Struebi is a social entrepreneur, thought leader, and the founder and CEO of Fairtrasa, a global social enterprise that empowers small-scale farmers to lift themselves out of poverty through sustainable agriculture and fair trade.
I founded Fairtrasa in Mexico in 2005 after a personal epiphany inspired me to leave a successful corporate career in Switzerland and devote myself to impactful business. The company pioneered an innovative model for helping farmers improve incomes, increase know-how, and develop into self-sufficient entrepreneurs and exporters, a model we scaled to several countries in Latin America.
Around 2009, the company expanded to form a vertically integrated supply chain with sales offices in Europe and North America. Fairtrasa has directly impacted over 40,000 lives (including farmers and their families) and is one of the top suppliers of Organic and Fairtrade fruit from Latin America.
For my work with Fairtrasa, I have been selected an Ashoka Fellow, an Endeavor Entrepreneur, a Yale World Fellow, a Gabelli Fellow, and a Schwab Fellow, and was named Social Entrepreneur of the Year by the Schwab Foundation, the abc* Foundation, Univision, and Visionaris. In 2014, I was named a New Champion by the World Economic Forum.
I was Social Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Yale University for several years and currently teach social entrepreneurship as an Adjunct Professor of Practice at Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business. I lecture frequently on social entrepreneurship in the U.S., Europe, and Latin America, and write essays on social entrepreneurship at HuffPost and elsewhere.