December 6, 2016

Capital Institute Community,

As we continue to explore the real world of regenerative finance and banking, Capital Institute is pleased to share our first documentary, " A Year in the Life of First Green Bank."  The film is the culmination of our yearlong collaboration with Central Florida's First Green Bank, founded by a seasoned banker, Ken LaRoe. After reading Patagonia Founder Yvon Chouinard's book Let My People Go Surfing, Ken was inspired to found a bank that would be a countervailing, regenerative (truly sustainable) force in a conservative rural community outside Orlando that was undergoing rapid and rampant real estate development. 
The film follows Ken as he steers an often-difficult course for the bank at the intersection of an extractive economy focused on short-term, financially driven real estate speculation, and an emerging regenerative one that supports the long-term health of people and planet. As he struggles with his own, sometimes conflicting, personal goals for the bank, we also witness the tremendous external pressures Ken faces. We meet investors who believe in the bank's mission but nonetheless are looking to cash out in the near-term through a sale of the bank rather than invest longer term to achieve a holistic value return. We encounter employees attracted to the bank's mission who want to participate in a more collaborative working environment. The film showcases the provocative mentors Capital Institute introduced to the bank, who encourage Ken, his staff, and the bank's investors to embrace a more deeply regenerative business model.
We also invite you to view a short trailer  that includes highlights from our first public screening of "A Year in the Life" at the Patagonia SoHo store in NYC, days after the 2016 Presidential Election. 

Full Version
"A Year in the Life" offers up no easy answers, concluding with an open-ended question about where First Green Bank is heading and whether it will ultimately succeed in its mission to be both profitable and values-driven. The film affirms the critical importance of the work that First Green Bank is pursuing against all the odds. We see Ken's struggle as a metaphor for all of us who seek to transform finance. Even more broadly, we believe the film will resonate with any business that wants to go beyond a narrow interpretation of sustainability.

Help Us Spread the Word!

If you're active on Twitter, here's a sample tweet:

Can a bank be profitable in LT & serve as a #regenerative chg agent? Follow @FirstGREENBank's story #greenbankfilm

Want to Host a Screening In Your Community?


-Susan Arterian Chang,
Director of The Field Guide to a Regenerative Economy & "A Year in the Life"
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