VBSR Logo Vermont
for Social Responsibility
Will Patten

Like you don't have enough to do already??!!??
These are quickies:

1.  Cast your ballot on the proposed amendment to the Bylaws creating 3 At-large members on our Board of Directors and cast your ballot on the slate of candidates for the Board.  A link to the ballots can be found on the front page of our website.  (No more than 10 minutes)
2.  While you're on the website, register for the Fall Conference at the Equinox in Manchester.  You know it will be a very worthwhile day.  (5 minutes extra)

3.  Talk to your health insurance broker about the new group health plans that are now available to VBSR members.  The plans and premiums will not be final          until the first week of November and we will email them to you.  (20 minutes max!)
4.  Send an email to Andrea Cohen (andreac@vbsr.org) telling her which of the upcoming Public Policy Forums you plan to attend:  (5 minutes)
                     Montpelier    10/19
                     Rutland        10/27
                     Manchester   11/10
                     Burlington     12/7
5.  Join other VBSR members on the SR Journey to explore and discover what a socially responsible business might be. (OK, I lied.  This one might never end.)

Will Patten
Executive Director
Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility

In This Issue
VBSR Educational and Networking Events
VBSR Public Policy Update
Join Local First Vermont
Have a question for other members? Ask them on the VBSR "Open Forum"
Many VBSR Members Winners of the 7th Annual 5x5x5 Growth Award
Local Seed Company Wins Lawsuit Against Genetically Engineered Crops
VBSR Members among those awarded grant money for Renewable Energy Projects from the Clean Energy Development Fund
Congratulations to the VBSR Internship Program
Coaching Center of Vermont, Inc. and UVM offer Educator's Coaching Certificate
The William James Foundation: Socially Responsible Business Plan Competition
VBSR Bookshelf - Lifting the Yoke: Local Solutions to America's Farm and Food Crisis
VBSR Educational
and Networking Events
VBSR 2009 Fall Conference
Online registration now available on our web site!

Visit our conference web page to view the agenda...
reserve your exhibitor table...
stay at the Equinox (reservations must be made by Friday, October 30 for the reduced conference rate)...
and download a pdf copy of the print brochure...
OR register online to join us...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009; 7:30 am - 5:00 pm
The Equinox Resort, Manchester Center, VT
for an inspirational and provocative day...we hope to see you there! _______________________________________________

2009 VBSR Business Open Studios:
connect, learn, share, apply.

...new name, fresh focus...

Join us for this year's Business Open Studios and learn something new, think something new, meet someone new.

VBSR Business Open Studio co-hosted by Handy Toyota and Vermont Clothing Company, St. Albans, VT
Thursday, October 29, 2009; 5:30 - 7:30 pm
Join us at Handy Toyota, 39 South Main Street, St. Albans, VT
For details and registration information, visit our web site...

VBSR Business Open Studio co-hosted by Green Mountain Club and American Flatbread
Thursday, November 5, 2009; 5:30 - 7:30 pm
Green Mountain Club, 4711 Waterbury-Stowe Rd, Waterbury Center, VT. 
For details and registration information, visit our web site...

VBSR Business Open Studio hosted by Concept2
Wednesday, December 2, 2009; 5:30 - 7:30 pm
Concept2, 105 Industrial Park Drive, Morrisville, VT
To sponsor this event, please contact Rita Bothfeld at ritab@vbsr.org by the end of Wednesday, November 4.

If you are interested in sponsoring or hosting a VBSR event, contact Rita Bothfeld at 802-862-8347 or at ritab@vbsr.org.
VBSR Public Policy Update

VT Flag Image VBSR Public Policy Forums
We still have four regional public policy forums coming this fall. Please attend and help direct our policy efforts for the 2010 legislative session.
  • Montpelier. Monday, Oct 19, 4:00-6:00 pm.  Kellogg Hubbard Library.
  • Rutland. Tuesday October 27, 4:00-6:00 pm. The Palms Restaurant (host sponsor).
  • Manchester. Tuesday, Nov. 10, 7:45 am-8:30 am, preceding the VBSR fall conference. Equinox Resort.
  • Burlington. Monday, Dec. 7, 4:00-6:30 pm. The Main Street Landing Performing Arts Center at Lake & College, Black Box. Main Street Landing (host sponsor).
See the VBSR events page for further event details.

VBSR Public Policy Issue Brief - Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund

Vermont's UI Trust Fund will be going into the red in early 2010. This is a serious matter that needs some thoughtful and bold lawmaking. There is a legislative study committee currently meeting on the issue and VBSR has a policy sub-committee that is exploring solutions to both the short-term issue and the longer-term solvency of the fund.  A solvent UI fund is critical to protecting people during economic downturns, helping ease the strain on state assistance programs, and dampening the cyclical swings of economic activity by keeping consumer demand somewhat steady.  It also helps keep our communities strong so that people can get by for a while without having to leave the state in search of jobs. 

So the system is broken- just when people need benefits more than ever,  many businesses can least afford to pay more. The system design is flawed. VBSR will be advocating for systematic changes that ensure we build the fund in good times so funds will be there when needed. Likely solutions will include indexing the taxable wage base (the amount of wages on which businesses pay into the fund) to changes in the average wage.  In the short-term, we still need to determine the balance between how long we borrow and how quickly we can increase employer contributions- each scenario has costs and implications.  As we continue to work on this issue please let us know your opinions and experiences.  Contact Andrea at andreac@vbsr.org. Also, go to the policy website to see VBSR's latest testimony and check back for future updates.

Other upcoming VBSR policy events:
VBSR actively partners with other organizations to forward our policy agenda.  Some upcoming partner events include:
  • OneVermont Conference: Facts to Action: Getting Control of Vermont's Budget Future. Oct 21st. Montpelier.
  • Act 250: 40th Anniversary Past, Present & Future. Oct 21st. Montpelier
November events include:
Tuesday, November 10th - Upper Valley, Hotel Coolidge, WRJ, 6-8:30pm
Thursday, November 12th - Rutland County, Green Mountain College, Poultney, 6-8:30pm
Saturday, November 14th - Bennington County, St. Peters Episcopal Church, Bennington, 10am - 2pm
Wednesday, November 18th - Chittenden / Franklin / Grand Isle, location and time TBD

Join Local First Vermont

As a member of VBSR, you are eligible to join the Local First Vermont movement as long as you meet the criteria for membership.

Go to the Local First Vermont website for further information and contact us at info@vbsr.org if you are interested.
Have a question for other members? Ask them on the VBSR "Open Forum".
VBSR has created an "Open Forum" exclusively for VBSR members.  Ask your questions, offer advice or just read what the other successful business people in Vermont are doing.

You must be logged into the website to access the forum. If you have any questions on how to register or have forgotten your username or password please contact Lisa Curtis at lisac@vbsr.org.

To be linked directly to the "Open Forum" please click here 
Many VBSR Members Winners of the 7th Annual 5x5x5 Growth Award
Vermont Business Magazine - September 15, 2009

We are pleased to announce this years 5x5x5 Growth Awards recipients.

Vermont Business Magazine, along with KeyBank, welcome you to join us in recognizing these companies, learning from their business experience and networking with your peers and colleagues.

This is not an awards ceremony. It is simply a recognition and celebration of those companies to whom the data points. The concept brings Vermont Business Magazine's Top 100+ issue to life. Our goal is to provide a forum for smaller businesses throughout the state to learn from these top 25 company's experiences. Additionally, this special September issue of Vermont Business Magazine recognizes the recipients of the 5x5x5 Growth Award. It is with great pleasure that we highlight their achievements here in our pages as well as at the event.

Local Seed Company Wins Lawsuit Against Genetically Engineered Crops
September 23, 2009

High Mowing Organic Seeds, a mail-order organic seed company based in Wolcott, Vermont announced today that it has won its nearly 20 month lawsuit against the USDA for the premature deregulation of Monsanto's genetically engineered sugar beets.

VBSR Members among those awarded grant money for Renewable Energy Projects from the Clean Energy Development Fund
Montpelier, Vermont -

The Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund Board announced today that the Clean Energy Development Fund (CEDF) will award $3.1 million for renewable energy projects throughout the state. 
"All of us on the new Board are pleased to provide the $3.1 million in grant awards to Vermonters for the development of clean, renewable energy in our home state," said CEDF Board co-chair Sam Swanson. "This is the first grant round in which we have been able to allocate a portion of the $22 million Vermont received from the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) for renewable energy projects, and we're excited to put these funds to work using our State's abundant renewable energy resources."

Congratulations to the VBSR Internship Program who received a grant from the Department of Labor for the third year in a row

VBSR's Vermont Intern Program has received it's third grant award from the Department of Labor.  The Intern Program has successfully placed 55 students in paid internships around the state of Vermont primarily with VBSR businesses. 

The Intern Program has worked with over 40 businesses finding them qualified interns for positions ranging from engineering, to graphic design, to public policy.  Career centers in colleges and universities throughout the state of VT all receive each internship posting, and VBSR is in touch with over 350 students on a regular base.  In the third year VBSR's Intern Program looks forward to continuing the great success of the program by reaching more businesses, students, and colleges throughout the state. 

If you are interested in finding out more about the VBSR Vermont Intern Program contact Tara Pfeiffer-Norrell, tarap@vbsr.org, or call 802-862-8347. 
  Coaching Center of Vermont, Inc.
and UVM offer
Educator's Coaching Certificate
Winooski, VT ---September 14, 2009

The Coaching Center of Vermont, Inc. (CCVT), announced that in collaboration with the University of Vermont's Vermont Business Center (UVM/VBC), it will be rolling out a new coach training seminar for educators: Education Coaching Professional Certificate for School Administrators, Team Leaders, and Teachers, starting in November.

The William James Foundation: Socially Responsible Business Plan Competition

The William James Foundation supports entrepreneurs who are starting for-profit businesses with defined social and/or environmental goals. We can best help entrepreneurs who are passionate about their expertise (e.g. renewable energy, sustainable agriculture, moving people out of poverty, etc.) but are new to starting their own for-profit business. These entrepreneurs come from all over the world, and range from teenagers starting a community business to PhDs with multi-million dollar ideas for renewable energy.

We provide this help through a Socially Responsible Business Plan Competition. Entrants start by submitting a short executive summary (no more than five pages) by December 4th, 2009. Almost all entrants will receive an average of ten pages of constructive feedback per plan per round. This feedback comes from our pool of hundreds of experts from the worlds of finance, academia, in-the-field practice, and other entrepreneurs. This is an excellent opportunity for entrepreneurs to learn from those who have successfully combined their passion for a better world with the rigor of financial sustainability. The top entrants will also have a shot at dozens of prizes that are together worth more than $100,000.

Please visit www.williamjamesfoundation.org/criteria to see who can enter and how to do so.

Newsletter Sponsorship


INTERESTED IN SPONSORING VBSR'S NEWSLETTER?  E-mail info@vbsr.org or call 802-862-8347 to secure a space today.

Welcome New VBSR Members!
1836 Country Store

Above the Fold

Action Circles

Aldrich House Associates

Alschuler Associates, LLC

Amy Ludwin

Arthur Harris, D.D.S.,P.C.

Blue Planet Reef Farms

Brattleboro Tennis Academy

Cardinal Medical Physics Services

Chateaguay Enterprises

Chris Bernier

Comer & Greak Financial Consultants

Conley & Foote

Contemporary Building & Design

Country Transport

Dunne Construction

`Ecopixel, LLC

Ecosystems Research Group, Ltd.

Gravel and Shea

Green Mountain Community Bridgeworks

Growing Vermont (Community Development and Applied Economics)

Handy Toyota

Hawley's Florist

Hedgehog Hill Cottage


Howard P Atherton Contractor

Iglehart Associates

J F Electric

Jost Construction

Kathryn Grover

LEDdynamics Inc

Lorraine S. Donley

Mountain View Inn

Northwestern Mutual Financial

P&L Loggers of VT

Plante & Hanley, P.C.

Ponder Entertainment, Inc

Puffer Broadcasting

Renee J. Jacobs, CPA P.C

Renee Warren

Rising Child-Nepal, Ltd.

Rob Gurwitt

Robert D. Proctor, CFP ChFC

Robert W Olesen

Rocky Dell Builders, Inc

Sacred Spirit Dog

Safe-T-School Transit Inc.

Sellers and Company

Shear Images

T-Bird Motor Inn

Terrigenous LLC

The Mountain Goat

The Orange Mountain Co.


TW Grace Incorporated

Vermont Film Commission

Vermont Records Center & Archives Inc.

Vermont Stress Solutions

Vermont Trophy & Engraving

Walker Farm

Whole Works Consulting

Zatz & Renfrew Consulting

VBSR Bookshelf
Lifting the Yoke:
Local Solutions To America's Farm And Food Crisis

Ron Krupp

VBSR Bookshelf Information Courtesy of Northshire Bookstore
test image

60 Lake Street, Suite 3G
Burlington, VT 05401

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.

We are commited to a multiple bottom line approach to business that values people, planet and profit.  For more information about our organization visit info@vbsr.org

Membership Information

Find us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter