Businesses for Climate Action Day: Bold Call for Big Impact

Businesses Lead the Charge for a Greener Tomorrow

Dozens of VBSR CEOs and business leaders gathered in Montpelier on Thursday, March 16, to deliver a decisive call for climate action.

Participating business leaders included…

  • Alison Whritenour, CEO of Seventh Generation
  • James Moore, President and Founder of SunCommon
  • Matthew McCarthy, CEO of Ben & Jerry’s
  • Kelly Klein, CEO of Groennfell Meadery
  • Carey Earle, President of Bluestone Life
  • Bram Kleppner, CEO of Danforth Pewter
  • Abbey Duke, Founder and CEO of Sugarsnap Catering
  • Mickey Wiles, CEO and Founder of Working Fields
  • Owiso Makuku, CEO of Main Street Landing
  • Chad Farrell, CEO of Encore Renewable Energy

The group advocated for the passage of key legislation this session, including the Renewable Energy Standard (H.320) – more commonly referred to as the “RES” bill – S.5, the Affordable Heat Act, and H.101, the Transportation Affordability Act. Through it all, they emphasized the need for a bold, comprehensive plan not just this session, but in every successive year.

With the golden dome standing tall as the backdrop, VBSR business leaders used their community profiles to speak directly to the press about why the climate and the economy are inseparable.

Climate allies and legislative powerhouses, Senators Bray, Watson, and White, and Representative Stebbins, led our afternoon Town Hall. After sharing their thoughts on this year’s climate-related bills, they answered questions candidly about opposition to action, how to overcome barriers to progress, and what personally inspires them about some of the solutions already available and those proposed for Vermonters.

The panelists brought humor alongside an urgent message to the attendees: focus conversations and efforts on educating and moving the legislators who are not yet onboard with these bills. This guidance inspired our legislator postcard writing session that followed.

The day was laced with meetings with top leadership, including the Senate Pro Tem, Senator Baruth, and Speaker of the House, Speaker Krowinski. These meetings outlined VBSR’s policy agenda and expectations of current and future climate legislation. Business leaders and elected leaders discussed ways the business community could support legislators in advancing current bills.

We ended an action-packed day with a lively networking event at Three Penny Taproom, where the dialogue continued and people sparked new connections.

Below are some images that captured our impactful day together in Montpelier.