VBSR to Honor Beth Sachs with Lifetime Achievement Award
Organization will also Award Benjamin Adler, Milk Money, SunCommon on September 14th
Burlington, VT – Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR) is proud to announce the awardees of the 2017 VBSR Awards, which will be given out at the organization’s 16th Annual Awards Ceremony and Dinner on September 14 at Basin Harbor in Vergennes. This year, Beth Sachs, cofounder and director emerita of Vermont Energy Investment Cooperation (VEIC), will receive VBSR’s Terry Ehrich Award for Lifetime Achievement. Additionally, Benjamin Adler, founder/owner of Skinny Pancake, Inc., will receive the organization’s Young Changemaker Award, and Milk Money and SunCommon will be recognized with VBSR’s Innovation and Inspiration Award in the categories of Small and Large VBSR Member, respectively. Registration, sponsorship information, and details on discounted event-night lodging can be found at vbsr.org/events. “We are so pleased with this year’s group of award winners,” said Jane Campbell, VBSR’s executive director. “Beth Sach’s contribution to our state’s focus on the reduction of fossil fuel consumption and the importance of workplace equality and flexibility cannot be understated. Benjamin Adler’s focus on a secure local food system has sent positive ripples throughout the state’s agricultural economy, and Milk Money and SunCommon continue to innovate, bringing Vermonters products to regular Vermonters that were once considered too expensive or elitist. Vermont is a better place because of these people, their values, and their organizations.” Campbell noted that both the Young Changemaker Award and the Innovation and Inspiration Awards will be given out for the first time at this year’s award ceremony. She expects the event to draw nearly 200 attendees because of the location of the event, networking opportunities, and the caliber of awardees. About the Awardees The VBSR Terry Ehrich Award for Lifetime Achievement (formerly the Terry Ehrich Award for Excellence in Socially Responsible Business) honors an outstanding individual in honor of Terry Ehrich, late owner of Hemmings Motor News, founder of the First Day Foundation and a founding board member of VBSR. The award is given annually to a person exemplifying Terry’s commitment to community, the environment, progressive public policy, and the workplace. Beth Sachs co-founded VEIC in 1986 with partner Blair Hamilton, and served as its executive director for 22 years, remaining on staff in the role of founder until this spring. She now continues to foster stewardship of the mission, values, and goals that are the foundation of VEIC and to further VEIC’s energy justice goals as a member of their board of directors. As a leader in energy efficiency and passive solar work for more than forty years (a career spanning several oil embargoes, a couple of wars fought at least partly over natural resources, and increasingly cataclysmic weather events), Beth has made it her life’s work to combat climate change, advocate for social justice, and create a progressive and flexible workplace. She serves on the board of the Vermont Energy Education Program and is secretary of the VEIC Board. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Antioch College. VBSR Awards, Page 2 The VBSR Innovation and Inspiration Award recognizes VBSR member organizations who have accomplished innovative and/or inspirational achievement in the following areas within the past three years: Planet (Environmental Impact), People (Social Impact) and Prosperity (Economic Impact). Milk Money L3C (Small VBSR Member Awardee) was launched in July 2015 with a vision to connect “Main St.” as well as accredited Vermont investors with Vermont entrepreneurs to fill a gap in the early stage capital market. Based in Charlotte, the organization is Vermont’s first registered thirdparty portal for administering investment campaigns using the Vermont Small Business Offering (VSBO) exemption. Founded by two seasoned entrepreneurs, Milk Money’s mission is to put the means for creating new businesses, a strong local economy, and personal wealth within the reach of all Vermonters. VBSR’s Nominating Committee chose to recognize Milk Money for their work to bring investment opportunities to regular Vermonters, while strengthening the local economy. SunCommon (Large VBSR Member Awardee) starts from the belief that everyone has the right to a healthy environment and brighter future – and renewable energy is where it starts: Energy from the sun can power our lives and build vibrant communities. Organized as one of Vermont’s pioneering Benefit Corporations, SunCommon’s mission is to tear down barriers to clean energy and use business as a force for good, with a commitment to the triple-bottom-line of people, planet and profit. Just five years old, SunCommon’s market-solution to climate change is Vermont’s largest provider of residential and community solar, having already doubled the number of solar homes in our beloved state. In addition to being recognized as a top employer (Vermont’s Best Places to Work), SunCommon was selected for VBSR’s Innovation and Inspiration Award in recognition of their new solar carport roof and canopy cover, made of natural materials. The VBSR Young Changemaker Award recognizes an individual under age 40 who has led the formation of a socially responsible enterprise that has been in operation three or more years. Awardees are selected based on their ability to use the power of business to advance innovative solutions to society’s challenges for the good of the planet, their employees, their community and economic growth in Vermont. Benjamin Adler, founder/owner of Skinny Pancake, Inc., comes from a family of entrepreneurs. He founded the Skinny Pancake in the summer before he graduated from Middlebury College and has spent the last 14 years methodically building all aspects of the business, including brand development and marketing, research and development of all of additional outlets, the building of their management team, the management of company finances, participation in local food initiatives and innovations, and all other responsibilities that come owning a growing business. As demonstrated by his career, he most enjoys (and excels in) business development. In choosing Adler, VBSR’s Nominating Committee referenced his longstanding involvement in the Localvore movement and local sourcing as well as a variety of consumer models and his application of Judy Wick’s concept that the hospitality industry can be used for community building and conversation. VBSR members and friends are welcome to celebrate the achievements of these fine individuals and companies on September 14 at Basin Harbor. Visit www.vbsr.org/events for more information. ### VBSR is a statewide, non-profit business association with a mission to advance a business ethic that values people and planet as much as profit. Through economic development, education, public influence, and networking, VBSR strives to help 750+ members set a high standard for protecting the natural, human, and economic environments of the state’s residents, while remaining profitable. Learn more or join the cause at www.vbsr.org.