Nov 16, 2012

Winners of the 2012 Sustainability Leadership Awards

Mayor McGinn joined us!
What a night! Yesterday evening, Thursday, November 15th, we held our annual awards dinner and fundraiser for a sold-out crowd! Over 250 people gathered at Daybreak Star in Discovery Park to recognize the eight  businesses and organizations and one individual that won a Sustainability Leadership Award for their accomplishments in leadership, innovation and commitments to sustainability.

"It's an honor to be Mayor to people like you," said Mayor Mike McGinn to the crowd. McGinn joined the dinner and gave a heart-warming welcome. He spoke highly of the social and environmental leaders of our city, many of which were in the room.
Mayor McGinn also praised those working to change business for good in the environment while helping boost our economy. He even joked about his own work in guiding Seattle to become a healthier, more environmentally friendly place. He said it's ironic he's promoting bicycle use because when the Seattle Center and the Space Needle were built 50 years ago, that mayor wanted jet packs and to be the reason we were recognized as "The City of the Future". My seat friend for the night, Carlo Voli, a nominee for his work at The Edmonds Community Solar Cooperative, told me how happy and supportive it feels to have a mayor like McGinn who understands the urgency for change. The feeling in the room was most definitely mutual. We are a city doing great work in sustainability, and the future sure does look reassuring when our policy makers get this too.

Attendees also included Councilmember Mike O'Brien and Keynote speaker Chris Rogers, co-founder and CEO of Point32, who spoke about his real-estate development firm's project, the Bullitt Center, working towards meeting the Living Building Challenge to make it the greenest commercial building in the world. We blogged about it a few weeks ago, click here to learn more about the self-sufficient building is net-zero water and energy. Also in attendance were leaders,  founders and members of the thirty-eight local businesses, organizations and individuals that were nominated. Check out the full list and bios here.
Our Executive Director,Terri Bulter, welcomes all.

Two winners were announced in the categories of Change Agent, Vitalizing Local Sustainable Economies, Stewards of Healthy Ecologies, Human and Livable Urban Communities, one for larger and one for smaller entities. And one winner was announced as Sustainable Hero. The winners are as follows:

Change Agent

Vitalizing Local Sustainable Economies
Fresh Bucks (Office of Sustainability and Environment and Neighborhood Farmers Market Alliance
Stewards of Healthy Ecologies and Humans
Alaska Airlines Green Team
Livable Urban Communities

Sustainable Hero 
Diana Vergis Vinh, the founding spirit behind launching of Community Kitchens in Seattle.

Winners were chosen by an esteemed group of judges, with expertise in areas including green built environment, sustainable business and biotechnology among many others. All of the nominees were community nominated and judges used the following criteria:

Change Agent: During the past year, helped change the conversation among businesses and/or communities about a sustainable future, through direct actions, leadership, or encouragement of others.  Can include work in any field including (but not limited to): community, social equity, environmental justice, natural environment, built environment, economic, education, environmental health, or spiritual.

Vitalizing Local Sustainable Economies: During the past year, helped forge the path towards a sustainable local economy, through direct actions, leadership, or through encouragement of others.

Stewards of Healthy Ecologies and Humans: During the past year, helped restore or preserve the health of the natural environment and/or of human health (environmental health), through direct actions, leadership, or through encouragement of others.

Livable Urban Communities: During the past year, helped create a healthier urban built environment, transportation innovation, or positive community resource through direct actions, leadership, or through encouragement of others.

Sustainable Hero: During the past year, made impressive progress for sustainability, through direct actions, leadership, or through encouragement of others.  Can be in any field or sector. 

Sustainable Seattle initiated the annual awards celebration in 2001, formerly known as the Sustainable Community Outstanding Leadership and Innovation Awards, to recognize those making the Puget Sound a more sustainable and livable place. To see the full program visit our events page.

We hope you can all make it next year! Looks like we'll need a bigger room, and that's a win-win for Seattle's environmental community! We'll have photos of all the winners and guests up on our Facebook page soon. Again, thank you to all who made this event a success. This was a night for you, the people of "Sustainable Seattle".

My table, a gorgeous centerpiece and wine!

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