Chouinard is founder of outdoor wear maker Patagonia, based in Ventura, California. An avid climber, Chouinard taught himself blacksmithing in 1957 to make reusable climbing tools that wouldn't pollute the environment.
His apparel business took off in the 1970s when Chouinard imported rugby shirts from England and sold them to climbers. Since 1985, Patagonia has set aside 1% of sales to finance grassroots environmental groups in the U.S. and abroad. Revenues hit $750 million in 2015.