Noting significant changes in corporate culture and work processes that ultimately helped lead the company to meet or exceed all customer service standards, the Edison Electric Institute today named Green Mountain Power Corporation as a finalist for the power sector’s highest honor, the Edison Award.Given annually by the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), the prestigious award honors the U.S. shareholder-owned and international members for outstanding contributions and advancement of the industry. A committee of national industry trade publication editors and a panel of past and current EEI chairmen select the finalists and ultimate winners. This year’s award, the 45th, will be announced June 8 at EEI’s annual convention in Orlando, Fla.”These companies embody the spirit of innovation that forms the cornerstone of our industry,” said EEI President Thomas R. Kuhn in announcing the finalists. “The strong, bold leadership they exhibit today, coupled with the ability to chart a course into tomorrow, are what set them apart. In Green Mountain Power’s case, it was the transformation of the corporate culture and work processes that resulted in it being named a finalist.”Green Mountain set out on a mission to transform itself into a company characterized by financial strength, zealous concentration on customer service, and investor and regulatory confidence. Over the past several years, the company analyzed each position and its benefit to customers. This effort resulted in a radically modified workforce and work processes, with the company now serving 460 customers per employee compared with the national average of 337.This major shift in the company’ s corporate culture included a new work environment that facilitates communication and teamwork, and pushes down responsibility and decision-making. Private offices are non-existent, and all employees—including senior executives—work in cubicles or open spaces of the same size.In addition, Green Mountain Power awarded all permanent employees stock options, which has increased employee interest in the financial health of the company. The financial performance of the company has improved to where Business Week ranked them 25th among The Small-Cap Top 50 in its national index of small-cap companies.Perhaps most important, Green Mountain Power meets or exceeds all customer service standards, has reduced outages to below the national median, and offers a money-back service guarantee.The other U.S. finalists for the 2004 Edison Award are MidAmerican Energy, Public Service Enterprise Group and We Energies.
GBA wins national awardNational American Institute of Architects Green Award for Waterfront Housing on Lake StreetGossens Bachman Architects won a National Design Award in the AIA “Show Youre Green” Awards Program for Waterfront Housing, located on the new Lake Street Extension on the Burlington Waterfront. The American Institute of Architects has launched a major initiative to demonstrate excellence in affordable green housing design and a commitment to the Green Movement. Projects were invited from around the nation. Selected projects will be showcased to demonstrate the diverse ways in which green practices are being used in excellent affordable housing design. This will also demonstrate how regional, geographic, climatic, or cultural influences generate different responses to unique needs.The project will be recognized at the AIA Housing Awards Reception at the AIA National Convention in Las Vegas this June. The Waterfront Housing project will also be highlighted on the Design Advisor website, www.designadvisor.org(link is external) as an exemplary affordable green project.The project was co-developed by the Burlington Community Land Trust and Housing Vermont.
Williston, VT – Child Care Resource of Williston was recently awarded full accreditation by the Quality Assurance Program (QAP) of the National Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (NACCRRA). The Chittenden County agency was recognized at a regional NACCRRA meeting in Albany, NY and again in Washington, DC. QAP is a national, voluntary, quality assurance system for community child care resource and referral programs. The program is designed to ensure that families across the country have access to consistent, high-quality consumer education and referral services. Kathie Mercia, Director of Subsidy, Resource and Referral, headed up the two-year accreditation process.Child Care Resource is a nonprofit agency founded in 1984. It serves the needs of Chittenden County families who need help searching and/or paying for child care, as well as offering workshops and trainings throughout the year for child care professionals. To learn more, visit www.childcareresource.org(link is external).
IBEW LOCAL 300 JOINS SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE TRADE GROUPSouth Burlington, Vt. — (March 6, 2008) — The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 300 recently joined Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR).Chartered in 1939, IBEW Local 300 represents 1,200 working Vermonters. Local 300 employers — including Ben and Jerry’s, Brown Electric, Burlington Electric Department, Central Vermont Public Service, Entergy-Vermont Yankee, E.S Boulos, Green Mountain Power, Peck Electric, Sherwin Electric, Vermont Gas and Washington Electric Cooperative — are among the most successful enterprises in the state. They all pay a living wage and offer solid healthcare and retirement packages to union employees.”The labor movement’s objectives are not that different than those of socially responsible businesses, as we all have an unwavering commitment to the common good,” said Local 300 Business Manager George Clain. “Like VBSR, the IBEW wholeheartedly believes that fair stewardship of workers, communities and the environment is just as important as financial success.”The oldest and largest values-led trade association in the country, VBSR promotes a socially conscious business ethic that encourages protecting the natural, human and economic surroundings of citizens. In addition to providing extensive educational and networking opportunities to its 650 members, VBSR is very active in influencing Vermont public policy. The organization is stationed in downtown Burlington.”We are pleased to have our first labor organization as a member,” said VBSR Executive Director Will Patten. “This membership represents the notion that the goals of labor and the goals of business do not have to run contrary to one another. In fact, we can craft a shared vision for the state and our economic development together.”ABOUT THE IBEW LOCAL 300Based in South Burlington, the IBEW Local 300 serves 1,200-plus laborers throughout Vermont. The organization is part of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), which is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and represents approximately 750,000 members who work in a wide variety of fields, including utilities, construction, telecommunications, broadcasting, manufacturing, railroads and government. The IBEW has members in both the United States and Canada and stands out among the American unions in the AFL-CIO because of its size and highly skilled constituency.For more information, contact Marketing and Business Development Director Matt Lash at (802) 864-5864, MLash@ibewlocal300.org(link sends e-mail) or www.ibewlocal300.org(link is external).
Twincraft Continues Their Commitment to Minimize Environmental ImpactWINOOSKI, VT – Twincraft Soap invested over $20,000 to replace the manufacturing facilities’ metal halide fixtures and older technology fluorescent fixtures with energy-efficient high performance fluorescent fixtures and lamps. The investment will save Twincraft an estimated $10,000 per year in electricity costs.”This is definitely a worthwhile investment,” said Brian Towle, Senior Maintenance and Engineering Manager. “It was clear from the start this investment would pay itself off in the next few years. More importantly, we’re continuing down the path we started on over a year ago in terms of looking for ways to operate more efficiently and with less environmental impact.”In order to more fully drive the point home, Twincraft will be “celebrating” the company’s new lighting by combining efforts with Efficiency Vermont. On June 19th, representatives from Efficiency Vermont will be at Twincraft passing out literature with energy saving tips for the home. They will also have energy-efficient compact fluorescents (CFLs) available at a discounted price. Twincraft will match each employee’s purchase with an additional free bulb.”Twincraft is a model. They’re showing their employees that with an initial investment, they too can save energy, have less environmental impact and even better-see a return on that investment,” said Rick Thibodeau, Efficiency Vermont Account Manager. “This is the perfect time to educate Twincraft employees. By replacing a regular bulb with a CFL, the average household saves $42 over the lifetime of the bulb in electricity and maintenance.”With consultative and economic assistance from Efficiency Vermont, Twincraft has been able to reduce their yearly energy consumption by 3.7%, saving over a quarter of a million kilowatt hours per year and a net reduction of over 163,000 lbs of greenhouse gas emissions. This was accomplished by modifying existing production equipment with higher efficiency motors, installing new pump controls, implementing fans with programmable thermostats, and installing energy-efficient lighting technologies with occupancy sensors.”Efficiency Vermont has been a great partner. They have helped us realize potential cost savings in a number of areas,” said Peter Asch, President/CEO of Twincraft. “Their financial incentives certainly make a number of these initiatives attainable, and they helped us tremendously in calculating the return on investment as well.”Twincraft Soap is a world-class private label soap manufacturer. The company produces quality and innovative specialty bar soap products for a diverse customer base. Twincraft has been in operation since 1971 and has facilities in Winooski and Essex, Vermont. Twincraft employs 230 people.###
$100K FOOD TO HELP FEED HUNGRY VERMONTERS-Bove’s donates product to Vermont Foodbank-BURLINGTON, VT- When most Vermonters are wrestling with how they can afford to both eat and heat their homes this winter, the Bove Family will donate over $100K of food to Vermont Foodbank. “Dinner and Dessert” will be in the form of Bove’s award winning sauce and SweetZas (Bove’s sweet flatbread desserts).Governor Jim Douglas will be receiving the donation on Friday (October 31) at noon in front of Bove’s Café in Burlington. Vermont Foodbank will also be on hand to receive the donation.”Bove’s Café has been part of the Burlington community for over 65 years and it has been in our mission since it’s inception to help those in need,” explained Mark Bove, President of Bove’s of Vermont, Inc. “We want to be sure that the children of Vermont are not going to bed hungry. By donating food, we hope to lighten the burden of those families falling on hard times throughout Vermont this upcoming winter.”Earlier this week the Vermont Attorney General released a statement announcing that Bove’s of Vermont, Inc. was in violation of CF 120 and would be fined with a $5,000 civil penalty and would need to make a $50,000 donation to Vermont Foodbank. The Bove family has always been supportive of the Vermont Foodbank, and this year recognized the need to increase their support beyond the level required by the fine. Bove’s of Vermont, Inc. is now in full compliance.Christine Foster, Interim Co-Chief Executive Officer said, “With a tenuous economy and a tough winter ahead, the Vermont Foodbank is seeing a substantial spike in demand for charitable food. With a greater number of families and seniors accessing food assistance, the Vermont Foodbank is grateful for businesses like Bove’s. The donation of SweetZas and pasta sauce will be distributed statewide to Vermonters in need.”For more information on Bove’s of Vermont, Inc. visit http://www.boves.com(link is external) . For more information on Vermont Food Bank visit http://www.vtfoodbank.org(link is external)
In honor of Earth Day, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters has announced winners of its challenege to find potential soucltions to climate change. More than 100 nonprofit organizations submitted proposals to address climate change in four specific areas: threats to coffee-growing cummunites, transportation-related emissions, building political will, and empowering individual action. The four winning nonprofits will each receive a $200,000 grant, payable over five years.The contest site on JustMeans.com received more than one million page hits, over 100,000 unique visitors, and created an online social network of nearly 30,000 stakeholders interested in Changing Climate Change.Threats to coffee-growing communities: The International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) and Catholic Relief Services (CRS) will use the grant to map forecasts of the impacts of climate change in coffee-growing communities and help smallholder coffee farmers identify, evaluate and implement adaptation strategies.Transportation-related emissions: New England Transportation Institute, in partnership with the University of Vermont Transportation Research Center, will conduct an in-depth analysis of transportation patterns in the rural Northeast to help inform policy-makers on the likely adoption and ultimate effect of different transportation strategies on greenhouse gas emissions levels.Building political will: Ceres will mobilize its business and investor partners to make the economic case for bold U.S. climate and energy legislation in 2009. These leaders will take their message to legislators and the media.Empowering individual action: The National Parks Conservation Association will encourage and empower national park visitors to Do Your Part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Outreach will include dozens of national parks and their local communities, the web, and hundreds of schools.The grants are part of Changing Climate Change, GMCR s company-wide initiative that also includes operational initiatives, employee incentives to reduce carbon emissions, and the purchase of carbon offsets. Working to protect the environment is one of our core company values, says Michael Dupee, Vice President of Corporate Social Responsibility for Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. Long-term solutions to climate change will come from the combined efforts of all of us nonprofits, for-profits, the government, and individuals. We re very excited by the potential these organizations and projects have to create positive change on this issue globally, as well as in our own operations.Details of the winning proposals can be found on GMCR s web site at www.BrewingABetterWorld.com(link is external)About Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (GMCR)As a leader in the specialty coffee industry, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (NASDAQ: GMCR) is recognized for its award-winning coffees, innovative brewing technology, and socially responsible business practices. GMCR s operations are managed through two business units. The Specialty Coffee business unit produces coffee, tea and hot cocoa from its family of brands, including Tully s Coffee®, Green Mountain Coffee® and Newman s Own® Organics coffee. The Keurig business unit is a pioneer and leading manufacturer of gourmet single-cup brewing systems. K-Cup® portion packs for Keurig® Single-Cup Brewers are produced by a variety of licensed roasters, including Green Mountain Coffee and Tully s Coffee. GMCR supports local and global communities by offsetting 100% of its direct greenhouse gas emissions, investing in Fair Trade Certified ¢ coffee, and donating at least five percent of its pre-tax profits to social and environmental projects. Visit www.GreenMountainCoffee.com(link is external) and www.Keurig.com(link is external) for more information.Source: WATERBURY, Vt.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–
Northwestern Medical Center has received a generous estate gift, courtesy of the late Dr Martin Wennar. Dr. Wennar gifted $100,000 to the fund that bears his name, the Martin H Wennar, MD Health Education Scholarship Fund. Dr Wennar, a retired general surgeon, passed away in August of 2009 following a battle with pancreatic cancer. “Marty always felt that it was a privilege to care for patients,” says his widow, Carol Streeter Wennar. “He hoped the Scholarship Fund would help others to make an impact on people’s lives.”Dr. Wennar helped establish NMC’s Health Professions Scholarship Program in 1987. In 2003, the scholarship fund was renamed and dedicated to Dr. Wennar, in honor of his long-standing commitment to encouraging health professions through scholarships. In recent years, the need to ensure the long term viability of the program has become even clearer, as health professions have faced shortages nationwide. Dr. Wennar’s gift will help achieve sustainability for the fund. On the value of pursuing a health career in a rural community, Dr. Wennar once said, “I want to see kids go into health care because it’s a wonderful career. It’s very rewarding to be able to help people. And, Franklin County is a wonderful setting for someone to work in—it truly affords you an opportunity to make an impact on people’s lives.”For more information about the Martin H. Wennar, MD, Health Education Scholarship Fund, please visit our website at: http://bit.ly/bL3Hxs(link is external).Source: NMC. 7.19.2010
Hunger Mountain Coop in Montpelier is extending its search for a possible second location in Waterbury. While its research showed that moving The Coop into the current RJ’s Friendly Market under the proposed plan poses too great a financial risk, the studies also indicated the potential for adding a Waterbury store remains feasible. As a result, The Coop will continue to explore options for an optimal storefront, though no final decision is anticipated in the near future.“We’ve heard from a lot of people who live and work around Waterbury that The Coop would be a welcome addition to this vibrant area”, explains Coop General Manager Kari Bradley. “But, we have to find the right fit before bringing this to a vote of our Member-Owners. They have raised a lot of questions during this process that will need to be addressed.”A new store and new market share would help The Coop advance its mission to sell more healthy and local food, serve more Members, increase sales for local vendors, create more jobs and cooperative commerce and deliver greater economic, social and environmental returns.For more information about The Coop, visit www.hungermountain.com(link is external), contact Krystal or Robyn at 223-8000 ext. 202, or sign up to be on The Coop’s e-news list by sending an email to email@example.com(link sends e-mail).Source: Hunger Mountain Coop. 8.19.2010Hunger Mountain Coop, located in Montpelier, Vermont is a community-owned natural market & café committed to building a dynamic community of healthy individuals, sustainable local food systems and thriving cooperative commerce. The Coop celebrated its 38th anniversary in 2010.
Draker Labs, a provider of high performance turnkey monitoring systems for large commercial and utility ‘ scale solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, recently completed a new round of equity funding. Harbor Light Capital Partners, a private investment firm based in Keene, NH, led the $3 million round. Other major participants included existing Draker investors FreshTracks Capital and Campbell Scientific. In addition to the equity investment, Draker has secured a new $1.5 million credit facility to help the company manage its working capital requirements.As part of the new equity round, Todd Warden, Managing Partner at Harbor Light, was elected to Draker’s Board of Directors.Commenting on his company’s decision to invest in Draker, Warden said ‘We are very excited to add Draker to our portfolio of growth–‐stage companies. The company’s reputation for high quality, turnkey solutions and its focus on the commercial end of the PV market have distinguished it from the competition and driven extraordinary growth over the past 18 months. We look forward to working with the management team to help Draker solidify its position as the leading provider of monitoring solutions for the rapidly growing commercial and utility–‐scale solar PV market.’Draker CEO, Charles ‘Chach’ Curtis, said that the equity funding is being invested in new technology development focused on scaling Draker’s current products and services to meet the needs of the rapidly emerging utility–‐scale market. The equity funding will also be used to add engineers, project managers, and field services and customer support personnel to effectively manage the rapidly growing fleet of solar projects that Draker has under management.In 2010, a 1MW solar PV project was considered to be a fairly large project by commercial standards. Contrast that with the 18MW project that we’re currently commissioning and you can see how far we’ve come as a company and why we need to continue to invest in R&D in order to remain at the leading edge of this rapidly developing industry. With the new funding, we can maintain our technological advantage and have sufficient boots on the ground to help our customers monitor and manage the large systems they’re currently developing.’About DrakerDraker Laboratories provides highly accurate and reliable monitoring solutions that help owners and operators of commercial and utility — scale PV systems maximize the efficiency and profitability of their solar assets. As a supplier of end–‐to–‐end monitoring solutions, Draker’s turnkey systems combine proven field instrumentation with an intuitive web–‐based data management system and unmatched customer support. www.drakerlabs.com(link is external) About Harbor Light Harbor Light Capital Partners is a private investment firm investing in early and growth stage companies located in the Northeast. The firm focuses on the technology, healthcare, and energy sectors and makes equity investments in the $1M to $5M range. Harbor Light Capital Partners provides the commitment, capital, and collaboration to build successful and sustainable businesses that are leaders in their industry. www.hlcp.com(link is external).Burlington, VT ‘ June 28, 2011) Draker Labs