Our mission is to foster a business ethic in Vermont that recognizes the opportunity and responsibility of the business community to set a high standard for protecting the natural, human, and economic environments of our citizens.
VSECU to Host Networking Get-Together in Bennington
As VBSR continues to celebrate 25 years of changemaking, our friends at VSECU have plenty to celebrate too! The statewide credit union for everyone in Vermont recently opened a new branch in Bennington! Join us as we "get-together" with VBSR members and friends on July 30th from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. Guests will check out the new space, enjoy food and drink provided by our hosts, and learn about socially responsible initiatives VSECU is engaged in, including hosting "The Lightning Jar". As downtown Bennington’s first proposed co-working space, The Lightning Jar will serve entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses, students, remote workers and other professionals in Southern Vermont and neighboring states.
This Networking Get-Together is free to attend and open to anyone interested in the triple-bottom-line approach to business... bring a friend! Learn more here.
Members can sponsor this event for $175. In addition to supporting VBSR, sponsors receive:
- 60 seconds to speak at event
- logo and 75-100 word company description with link to sponsor's website on VBSR event webpage
- logo with weblink on email invitations to VBSR's database of businesses in and around the host county
- logo on mailed post-card invite to around 700 businesses and on displays at event
- social media thank you's and promotion
VBSR Releases 2015 Public Policy Summary
How VBSR advocated for YOU in Montpelier this past session.
The 2015 legislative session opened with some VBSR priority areas carrying over from the 2014 session, in particular legislation on earned paid leave made it through the House. Other issues such as Clean Water and Rent-to-Own legislation gained new momentum this session and VBSR worked closely to influence these policies.
We received tremendous support from our members this year, working to advance VBSR's legislative agenda and making positive change for Vermonters. We want to extend our gratitude to the many members who either spent time writing to legislators, testifying in committee hearings or simply taking time away from their daily responsibilities to support advocacy that truly makes an impact in promoting socially responsible business practices and policies in Vermont.
Click here to read a few of VBSR’s successful policy efforts from the last session; if you have questions or comments about any of this information, we invite you to contact our Public Policy Manager, Daniel Barlow.
125+ Gather in Waitsfield for Celebratory Get-Together
Continuing the celebration of 25 years of changemaking in action, the VBSR Board of Directors hosted a special networking Get-Together at Lareau Farm in Waitsfield on June 25th. New members mingled with founding members, dignitaries talked policy with forward-thinking business owners, and new partnerships were made on a beautiful evening in the valley. Guests also were given a chance to recognize past and present board members, weigh in on their thoughts for the direction of the organization and toast to the future of VBSR. Thank you to the 125+ like-minded individuals who joined us for networking, celebration and, of course, flatbread!!!
The Vermont Conversation with David Goodman:
VBSR: A Quarter Century of Socially Responsible Business in Vermont
This week on The Vermont Conversation, we celebrate the 25th anniversary of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility. From early efforts by business people who dubbed themselves “socialists for capitalism,” Vermont has been at the forefront of the socially responsible business movement. VBSR is now the largest statewide socially business association in the country. As home to iconic socially responsible brands such as Ben & Jerry’s, Gardener’s Supply and Seventh Generation, Vermont businesses have pioneered the idea of businesses with a “triple bottom line:” measuring success in terms of people, profits and the environment. We speak with Vermont business leaders who have nurtured this movement since its inception:
Dave Barash, co-founder of VBSR, longtime social entrepreneur who worked for Ben & Jerry’s, currently Director of New Ventures for Vermont Energy Investment Corp.
Allison Hooper, co-founder of Vermont Creamery, early VBSR board member and on the original board of the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund
Bruce Seifer, VBSR founding member, appointed by Burlington Mayor Bernie Sanders to lead the City of Burlington’s economic development efforts, which he did for three decades
Julie Lineberger, former VBSR board chair, co-owner with her husband of LineSync, an architectural firm
Will Patten, former VBSR executive director, co-owner of Hinesburgh Public House, a socially responsible restaurant
Duane Peterson to Receive VBSR’s Terry Ehrich Award September 16
Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR) is pleased to announce Duane Peterson, Founder and Co-President of SunCommon, as the 2015 recipient of the Terry Ehrich Award for Excellence in Socially Responsible Business. Named for the late owner of Hemmings Motor News and a founding member of VBSR, the award is given to a VBSR member who best exemplifies Terry Ehrich’s commitment to the environment, workplace, progressive public policy, and community.
Fellow VBSR members proposed Peterson for the award through an open nomination process and VBSR’s Nominating Committee suggested the board of directors honor Peterson with the award. The official announcement was made to a crowd of 325 members and friends at VBSR’s 25th Annual Spring Conference on May 13. Peterson will be honored at the 2015 Terry Ehrich Award Ceremony and Dinner on September 16.
25 Years of Changemaking in Action
Holy cow what an amazing day! Thank you to the more than 325 folks who attended our 25th Annual Spring Conference! We laughed, cried, networked, and learned how to better implement CSR strategies into our operations during the day-long event. Attendees loved hearing Ben & Jerry's CEO Jostein Solheim's Keynote, enjoyed locally sourced menu thanks to Black River Produce, visited with more than 40 exhibitors, and chose from 15 different workshops ranging from solar financing to accessing leadership strengths (which could be heard all the way down the hall!). We spent time networking with like-minded businesses and saying goodbye to Andrea Cohen, our executive director who is about to embark on the next stage of her professional journey.
Thank you again for helping us help you advance corporate social responsibility in Vermont... and beyond!!! Click here to check out the photos of the day... feel free to share, like, and tag your friends. See you next year!
25 years ago, a group of business leaders got together to form a business association which better reflected their values. Today Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility has over 760 members.
Why is VBSR still relevant today?
Why are business leaders still excited about VBSR?
Why is being a member of VBSR valuable?
Six leaders in sustainable business answer "Why VBSR?" in less than 90 seconds.
Go ahead, click play.