The Robert F. Kennedy Ripple of Hope Award has honored exemplary leaders across government, business, advocacy, and entertainment who have demonstrated an unwavering commitment to social change and worked to protect and advance equity, justice, and human rights. At the helm of the largest private renewable energy company in North America, Polsky was selected in recognition of his ongoing efforts to accelerate the clean energy transition.
“My father was a strong believer in the importance of stewardship and protecting our environment for the generations to come,” said Kerry Kennedy, president of Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights. “Michael’s work is a tangible representation of that mission, providing the framework we need to build a more sustainable future.”
Driven by Polsky’s entrepreneurial vision, Invenergy has led the clean energy revolution, expanding from thermal generation to wind and solar, and is now paving the way for innovative technologies including energy storage, offshore wind, transmission, and clean water. In 2022, the company’s 2,000 employees celebrated 30-gigawatts of clean energy projects developed across 30 U.S. states and four continents since Invenergy's inception 21 years ago.
“Robert F. Kennedy’s vision of a better world spanned all areas and industries – he understood that advancing human rights and social justice requires investment in everything from education to energy and the environment,” said Polsky. “I’m honored to receive this award and look forward to growing Invenergy’s impact as we fulfill our mission as innovators building a sustainable world.”
Shaped by Polsky’s philanthropic values, Invenergy invests heavily in project communities through an impact program. His humble roots ignited a commitment by him and his family to giving back to many causes including education, entrepreneurship, climate and sustainability, healthcare, women’s rights, immigration, veterans, and arts and culture. Most recently, Polsky’s philanthropic efforts have been focused on his native Ukraine to ensure the well-being of Ukraine’s people, the nation’s victory, and ultimate reconstruction.
The Ripple of Hope Award is inspired by Robert F. Kennedy’s most famous speech, the 1966 Day of Affirmation address he gave in South Africa at the height of apartheid: “Each time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring those ripples to build a current which can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
Previous winners of the Ripple of Hope Award include Stacey Abrams, former Vice President Joe Biden, Bono, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, former President Bill Clinton, George Clooney, Tim Cook, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Amanda Gorman, Vice President Kamala Harris, Dolores Huerta, Colin Kaepernick, late Congressman John Lewis, former President Barack Obama, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Desmond Tutu.
Learn more about RFK Human Rights and its annual Ripple of Hope Award at RFKHumanRights.org/Awards.
Invenergy drives innovation in energy. Invenergy and its affiliated companies develop, own, and operate large-scale renewable and other clean energy generation and storage facilities in the Americas, Europe and Asia.
About Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights
We are a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization that has worked to realize Robert F. Kennedy's dream of a more just and peaceful world since 1968. In partnership with local activists, we advocate for key human rights issues — championing change-makers and pursuing strategic litigation at home and around the world. And to ensure change that lasts, we foster a social-good approach to business and investment and educate millions of students about human rights and social justice.
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