Philip Sansone

philip sansonePhilip is the President and Executive Director of Whole Planet Foundation, overseeing operations, programmatic direction and financial management. Philip brings over 44 years of expertise and experience to the mission and operations of the Foundation. His diverse and far ranging background focuses on three distinct arenas in international development: entrepreneurship, subsistence agricultural cooperatives and microfinance in developing countries.

As an entrepreneur in Austin, Texas, Philip founded Book People – one of the largest independent bookstores in the country, where he continues to serve on the Book People Board of Directors. Philip was also the director of Multimedia, a business unit of Whole Foods Market’s Wholepeople.com and importer of indigenous arts and crafts from the developing world. In the international development arena, Philip managed community development projects in Latin America for the Peace Corps and USAID and in Afghanistan for a non-governmental organization.

In the 1970’s as a subsistence agricultural cooperative specialist, Philip worked for seven years with small subsistence farmers in Latin America and more recently in Afghanistan to encourage farmers to choose alternatives to the opium poppy cultivation. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Honduras where he worked with the Misquito Indians for almost three years on the Patuca River in La Mosquitia, and in Paraguay for four years helping to start agricultural cooperatives.

Philip has a BBA from Texas Tech University, is conversant in Spanish and can exchange basic pleasantries in Guarani and Misquito. Philip is a firm believer in the power of free markets, honest yet limited government and “conscious capitalism” to create prosperity and individual dignity. Philip also serves as chairman of the UK and Canada Boards of Directors for Whole Planet Foundation.