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Issue 75
April 2012


By now, Earth Day events are all around you and companies, organizations and communities are rallying around the "Go Green" banner. Earth Day is a wonderful chance to take stock of how our behavior affect those around us. And, when you really break it down, it's about each one of us taking care of the other - and, perhaps more importantly, those who come after us.
A recent interview with Patagonia's founder Yvon Choinard explored the concept of sustainability. He said, "There is no sustainability as far as any human, economic endeavor." This might be shocking to some, but not us.

Sustainable Florida has been promoting the concept of sustainability and how you can take action to reduce your expenses, increase efficiencies, be environmentally aware all designed to help create a better quality of life for your community. And it's an ongoing effort of continual improvement.

There are some great efforts taking place around the state. A quick look at the Best Practice Nominations this years affirms the commitment. The Green Schools Network illustrates how teaching good practices early offer a promise of a great future.

I remain optimistic about our home state - Florida. I remain equally optimistic that Floridians care about our shared future. Happy Earth Day and cheers to helping to create a more sustainable Florida.

All the best,
Tim sig 
Tim Center, Esq.
Executive Director


P.S. Be sure to join us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on the latest sustainability news in Florida and beyond.

Wonderful Best Practices Nominated!

CSF Best Practice Award 
Program Keeps Getting Better

Sustainable Florida received more than 80 nominations for the Annual Best Practices Awards Program - now in its 16th year.

Board Chairman Joe Kilsheimer said, "The nominations demonstrate a continued commitment of companies, government agencies, non-profit organizations and individuals to ensuring continued prosperity, promoting environmental stewardship, and building a better quality of life for our residents."

The nominations - which will be highlighted in future issues and online - provide exciting efforts in energy, water, green building, transportation, restoration, waste, land use, agriculture, and education.

This year, the Sustainable Florida Best Practice Award for Green Building is presented by Sarasota-based Willis A. Smith Construction, Inc. Willis A. Smith Construction is committed to environmentally sensitive design and construction as a long-term business philosophy. As members of the U.S. Green Building Council and the Florida Green Building Coalition, they are strong proponents of "green" building with 16 LEEDŽ Accredited Professionals on staff. Learn more about Willis A. Smith in this article.

Seven categories - Government, Non-Profit, Large Business, Small Business, Partnership, Leadership and Green Building - will be recognized at a special awards event this summer. The awards program will be held in conjunction with a day-long special training event - Working on the Green.

Meet the 2012 Nominees

Green Ribbon Schools
Green Ribbon Schools 
Florida Nominates 3!


The US Department of Education created the national Green Ribbon Schools program to recognize schools that save energy and water, reduce costs, feature environmentally sustainable learning spaces, protect health, foster wellness and offer environmental education to boost academic achievement and community engagement.


After receiving nominations, judges recommended three schools to the Florida Department of Education. The Florida DOE formally nominated three Florida schools to compete for this national designation.


Sustainable Florida commends the following nominees:

Two additional schools that received high scores included James Marlowe Elementary in Pasco County and Driftwood Middle School Academy of Health and Wellness in Broward County.


National winners of the designation will be recognized in May 2012 during the first national U.S. DOE Green Ribbon Schools ceremony in Washington, D.C. Winning schools are anticipated to hold recognition ceremonies at the individual schools in fall 2012.


Read the FLDOE Breaking News!

A Look Around the State and Beyond
Florida Capitol 
Sustainability Efforts Continue

Just a few observations about what's happening around us.

Governor Rick Scott signed the 2012-13 budget this week. At just under $70 billion, it contained some elements that promote sustainability.

  • Tallahassee Community College received $4.5 million to build an Environmental Institute in Wakulla County.
  • Funding for Feeding America was approved. The money helps transport and provide food to poor.
  • Florida Forever, the nation's model for state conservation efforts, received $8.4 million.
  • Everglades Restoration was funded at $30 million.

For a great recap of substantive legislation simply click here.


This is always a great time to look at how you can save money on your energy bill. This article did a fine job illustrating how your local utility company can help you get rising energy costs in check.


Fortune magazine sponsored Brainstorm Green - a great online forum featuring some incredible keynote speakers discussing the hottest topics challenging our economy and the environment. Login and listen for free.


1000 Friends of Florida and the Future is Now Foundation also held a great Smart Planning for a Green Future online conference last week.


On a sad note, the father of Florida's Growth Management laws passed away. John de Grove, a land planner and former Secretary of the Florida Department of Community Affairs, was a founder of 1000 Friends of Florida.



Welcome New Members! Thank you!
Your Name Could be Here!

Thank you!Sustainable Florida is indebted to its Board and corporate and non-profit Partners. And, now with a new membership program, we are pleased to welcome the following new members of Sustainable Florida.
  • Ben Bird, Sustainability Manager, City of Bradenton
  • Stewart Parsons, Sustainable Tallahassee
  • Kerul Kassel, Ph.D., Faculty with Fielding Graduate University
  • Cynthia Muir, Public Information, Public Service Commission
  • Jim Barnes, Director of Operations, Village of Wellington
  • Barry Benjamin, Benjamin Visuals
Sustainable Florida is also pleased to welcome back the following sustaining corporate Partners.
  • Walt Disney World Parks and Resorts
  • Publix Super Markets
  • Darden Restaurants
  • Florida Power and Light
  • Covanta Energy
  • Florida Farm Bureau Federation

To become a member or corporate partner, simply contact us at or complete the form.


Thank you!

Sustainable Florida Board in the News
Jenn McAlister 
Leadership Knows No Bounds
Sustainable Florida is a not-for-profit organization that relies heavily on its Board of Directors for a variety of support.
It's great to introduce you to a couple new Board members and highlight some accomplishments of Jenni Williamsour current Board members.
Joining the Sustainable Florida Board are two leaders in their communities.

Congratulations to Board Chair Joe Kilsheimer who was elected to the Apopka City Council. See the story!


And it was great to see former Board Chair Mary Lou Rajchel named one of the 25 Women You Need to Know. Of course, we've known this for years!


Finally, we are always excited for new opportunities. Board member Ian Olson is moving on from Darden Restaurants to join McDonald's at their corporate headquarters in Illinois. This is a great for Ian, but a loss for Florida.


Join NOW!
Here's a chance to become part of the premier sustainability program in the state. Members will get exclusive updates on breaking sustainability news, discounted admission to our signature events - Best Practice Awards and annual Conference - plus Regional Forums and more. Become a members and let us help tell your awesome story!