An affiliate of the WMEP.
Conference Newsletter Content
  • 2019 Sustainable Business Awards
  • Conference Corner
  • Session Highlight
  • Sponsorship
  • Green Masters Program Closes end of October
  • Sustainability Events
  • Forward, Sustainably Podcast
October 2019

Happy Autumn!

This is the last week of (the first round of) early bird conference pricing. Register by Friday, Oct. 11 to save $150 . The price will jump $75 to $375 through November and to $450 in December.

The conference is shaping up to help business evolve their sustainability programs, with sessions like our deep dive workshop with Claire Kells from the UN Global Compact . Claire will lead businesses through a value stream map exercise to understand the material aspects of their business in relationship to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. You can see other session details on our Conference Agenda website.

This is also the last week the 2019 Sustainable Business Awards are OPEN. Nominations for Sustainable Leader , Sustainable Product and Sustainable Process are open through October 16.
The Sustainable Business Awards recognize businesses and individuals that are prioritizing sustainability and making strides towards impactful change in Wisconsin. The winners of these awards demonstrate leadership, initiative, innovation and are making measurable impacts.
The awards offer the prestige of being recognized by the Wisconsin business community and serve as a platform to elevate sustainable practices in the greater community . The Sustainable Business Awards celebrate recipients for challenging conventional business practices and demonstrating cutting edge environmental, social and governance leadership while rewarding them for being leaders in their industry and community.
Presented for the first time in 2014, these awards honor businesses, teams or individuals for developing sustainable products, processes, or business models and demonstrating that financial, environmental and social performance work together to strengthen resiliency and long-term business strength while also enhancing relationships with customers, employees, investors, and our greater communities.

Self-nominations are encouraged and are in fact, the norm. If you want to nominate yourself or someone else for one of the awards, click on the button below to get started.

*Nominations close Oct. 16th at midnight.
Conference Corner
"Deep Dive" Session Highlight
Circular Economy:
How Businesses Are Rethinking Waste and Using It As a Profit Center
Circularity is a different way of thinking and doing business altogether. It's a strategy that requires businesses to innovate in order to address current topics like resource scarcity, waste and climate risk. It has tremendous economic opportunity for businesses willing to innovate and take a detailed look at their products and processes.

Speakers :

This deep dive session explains the key concepts of a circular economy and highlights two Wisconsin businesses success stories. First you will hear from Chris Pier about Good Will’s process for reusing, refurbishing, re-purposing what comes into their donation centers and how they reached a 99% diversion rate. Secondly, you will hear from Kelsey Holtz about how Kohler Co. has taken waste from their manufacturing processes and turned it from a concept into a high end product. Kelsey will share the ins and outs of why and how Kohler built their Waste Lab.

To read more about the speakers, click their name for their LinkedIn profiles or click on the "Learn More" and scroll to "Circular Economy".
Being a sponsor is a great way to get your name out in the sustainability community.

Our conference audience consists of business leaders and sustainability professionals from the region. Sponsorship levels range from $500 - $10,000 with benefits such as logo displays, a feature in our newsletter, tickets to the conference and more! View the benefits.
To register as a sponsor, visit the registration site. When asked your registration type , use the drop-down to select " sponsor. " The following page will display your sponsorship options.
Last Call for 2019 Green Masters Program.
Registration closes at the end of the month.
The Green Masters Program is open until October 31, 2019. It is always FREE for new businesses. Returning businesses pay $250 in October.

The Green Masters Program:
  • Builds a strong foundation for your sustainability programming by assessing where you are today
  • Is a comprehensive list of actions you could apply in your operations
  • Gives credentials that certify your business as taking sustainability actions
  • Provides your company with recognition for your sustainability efforts
Sustainability Events
comic of a wrecking ball breaking through a brick wall as a metaphor for breaking through the feeling of talking to a brick wall
Make the case for energy efficiency: sales strategies and tactics that work

Oct 9 & 10 | 8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. | Milwaukee
Saving money is reason enough to invest in energy efficiencies, right?

Wrong, there are too many other projects competing for an organization's management bandwidth and capital. Learn how to re-frame the benefits of enhanced energy efficiency so they can be measured in the way your organization gauges success. Create concise and persuasive messaging that spells out both the utility savings and the non-utility-cost financial benefits that will expedite the decision-making process.

During this session, you’ll learn how to create elevator pitches, one-page proposals, and one-page financial analyses that speak the same language as your key decision makers. Attend this session to get the tools you need to make sure your energy efficiency proposals aren't ignored.

Workshop organized by SlipStream . Use this promo code PROMOMJ50 to get $50 off.
2019 Sustainability Roundtable — USGBC Wisconsin

Oct 10 | 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. | Madison
On October 10th, USGBC - WI is bringing together an inspiring panel of professional mentors with diverse backgrounds within the sustainable building industry. This is your opportunity to network and gain career insight as our mentors share their personal career paths with you in an intimate setting.  

Meet the 2020 panel of professionals!
  • Alec Bartolai, Sr. Sustainability Engineer for Sargento Foods Inc 
  • Rachel Feil, Project Engineer with Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District
  • Russell Knudson, Director of Energy Performance with Strang 
  • Alejandra Lira, Coastal Engineer with SmithGroup
  • Kyle Reynolds, Account Executive with Interface 
  • Jacqueline Freidel, Project Manager with Focus On Energy 
  • Dan Kalkman, Project Designer with The Kubala Washatko Architects

How Sustainability Can Addresses Workforce Challenges

Oct 22 | 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. | Webinar
The workforce is evolving. What current trends, globally and locally, are affecting your workforce?

This FREE webinar will dive into the role of WI Workforce Development Boards, the trends that are affecting your workplace, what they mean and why they are important. We will also discuss the connection between sustainability and your workforce and why leveraging your sustainability program is an important, and often overlooked, component of your solution.

This webinar is a primer for two breakout sessions at the Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council 2019 Conference: How to Leverage Your Sustainability Program to Address Workforce Challenges (Deep Dive) and Women in Sustainability Panel: Overcoming 21st Century Workforce Challenges.

The Ecosystem of Food Waste Solutions

Oct 22 | 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. | Madison
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, more food waste reaches landfills than any other single material in our everyday trash .

Join our friends at Sustain Dane for a deep dive into the important environmental topic of food waste and the ways in which we can gain value through new approaches. Learn about the experience of Zendesk’s San Francisco office with municipal composting and their overall corporate approach to sustainability from Todd Lienart and DeShawn Witter. Jessica Niekrasz at Clean Fuel Partners will discuss how bio-digestion provides farmers the means to manage food production waste in an economical and environmentally friendly manner. Then hear about Findorff’s recent launch of composting from Ben Austin, Findorff’s Sustainability Lead. Finally Charlie Romines, Madison’s Streets Superintendent, will provide a status update about the City of Madison’s food scraps pilot program and a vision for future initiatives.

Solutions for managing food waste can accelerate community well-being.

Leveraging the Green Masters Program; Assessing Sustainability to Improve Your Bottom Line

Oct 29 | 11:00 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. | Neenah
The Green Masters Program helps translate sustainability success into business success and gives you a way to organize and share information. Whether your business has a sustainability program or not, The Green Masters Program helps advance your organization forward in your sustainability thinking and programming.

In this workshop your will:
  • Learn why sustainability is necessary in today’s market
  • Understand the benefits of using the Green Masters Program as a tool
  • Dive into how to collect and organize information to answer the questions in the Green Masters application
  • Know how to use the program as a tool to advance sustainability in your business
  • Get a glimpse of how to put the recognition piece to best use

If you are interested in growing your businesses' sustainability programming, learning about the GMP, getting credentials for sustainability and or recognition for sustainable practices, click the button below to sign up for or learn more about this event.

 Role of Sustainability in Financial & Investment Decision Making

Oct 29 | 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. | Neenah
Sustainability is as much a part of your financial decisions as it is your operational decisions. While some CFOs have integrated principles of sustainability into their work, still too many don’t realize the connection between sustainability and economic and financial issues .

Topics that will be discussed as they relate to sustainability include:
  • Accounting and the rise of Sustainable Accounting Standards Board (SASB) standards
  • Banking options and choices
  • Investment decisions
  • Employee benefit packages
  • Updating financial and investment policies 

This workshop is designed for CFOs, accountants, human resource professionals responsible for employee benefit packages and investment officers.

 Climate Fast Forward Conference

Nov 8 | Monona Terrace | Madison
The Wisconsin Academy and partners are bringing together the state's best strategic thinkers on climate change for a working conference designed to "fast forward" solutions for a more sustainable Wisconsin and world . Climate Fast Forward is a different kind of conference, one that leverages collaboration and crowd-sourcing in the pursuit of ready-to-go solutions for carbon reduction and climate resilience.

Join a projected 300 leaders from a variety of sectors—government, tribal nations, advocacy, the sciences, business, utilities, and arts and culture, as well as citizens from all walks of life—to develop key recommendations for how Wisconsin can become a clean energy leader with a practical plan to deal with climate change. 

**early bird pricing ends on Oct. 11th

C itizens Utility Board of Wisconsin 40th Anniversary Celebration

Nov 13 | 4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. | Madison
The Citizens Utility Board (CUB) of Wisconsin, Inc. is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the legislation that created our organization on Nov. 13th, 2019. We are Wisconsin’s independent voice for utility consumers. CUB is a member-supported nonprofit organization that advocates for reliable and affordable utility service on behalf of residential and small business customers of electric, natural gas, and water utilities before the Public Service Commission (PSC), the Legislature, and the courts.

 This is a free event.
Sustainability Podcast
This week on  Forward, Sustainably University of Wisconsin Sustainable Management  program manager, Amanda Goetsch, and podcast guest, Jessy Servi Ortiz, dive into a smorgasbord of sustainability topics. To kick things off, they talk about entrepreneurship, sustainable agriculture and food systems, supply chains, and fair trade labels on the market. Then, they focus locally on sustainability initiatives in Wisconsin, where exciting workforce developments, career opportunities, and benchmarking tools are taking effect thanks to Wisconsin sustainable business leaders including Kohler Company, Madison Gas and Electric, and General Plastics.