Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility
Vermont Businesses...Vermont Values. 


Wonderful to see so many of you at the 24th Annual Spring Conference last week! We value your participation and engagement, and hope you obtained a few new ideas and business connections that will be beneficial to your work going forward.

Before the end of the month we hope you will consider a few things:

Sign-up to be included in the next addition of the Buy Local Book ! In addition to opportunities for retailers, this year we will be including a new section for professional services section. There are opportunities to have a story, an advertisement, or coupons in the book. Support local and support Vermont ! Learn more here and below.

Consider nominating someone for the Terry Ehrich Award for Social Responsibility in business.  We will be recognizing the selected individual at a special event in September. Click here to nominate someone!

- Submit your preferred funding option for the future Universal Health Care system in Vermont. We are looking for your input in how Vermont should replace the approximately 2 billion dollars we are already spending in private insurance premiums. Let us know what you think, click here.


And of course, enjoy the beautiful springtime in Vermont!

Andrea Cohen, Executive Director
VBSR Welcomes and Thanks our Newest Members!
Act Now: Buy Local Book Advertising Deadline is June 1
Secure Space in the 2014-2015 Book!

Don't miss this unique opportunity to promote your locally owned business!
NEW THIS YEAR: professional services and online businesses will have their own section in the book -- a terrific way for designers, accountants, consultants, and others to introduce new customers to their business!

The Buy Local Book, currently in its fifth year, continues to grow and currently serves brick and mortar locations in Chittenden, Addison, Washington and Lamoille counties. More than 7000 books are printed and sold annually; the 2013-14 book featured more than 200 advertisers. With the addition of the new professional services section mentioned above, businesses outside the 5 current counties served are eligible to purchase space in the 2014-2015 Buy Local Book. 

Ready to advertise?



Terry Ehrich Award Nominations Deadline May 30th
Nominate An Inspiring Colleague Today!

VBSR's annual award ceremony honors an outstanding member of the VBSR community with the Terry Ehrich Award. Named for the late owner of Hemmings Motor News and founder of the First Day Foundation, the Terry Ehrich Award is given annually to a person who exemplifies Terry's commitment to the environment, workplace and community. Nominations will be judged on four criteria: Workplace Environment, Political Environment, Social Environment and Natural Environment.


Any VBSR member at a for-profit business is eligible to be nominated. Self-nominations are accepted and encouraged. The award will be presented at the Terry Ehrich Award Ceremony and Dinner in mid-September 2014. For more information, please call VBSR at (802) 862-8347.


Nomination deadline: Friday, May 30, 2014.


Please click here to fill out the nomination form. 
Capital Dome in Spring VBSR Launches Health Care Finance Calculator
Members Encouraged to Submit Financing Suggestions

How should Vermont finance health care reform? The Vermont Legislature is expected to consider a financing package for universal health care in the 2015 session and VBSR needs member input on potential financing packages. Please check out our health care financing calculator today and submit a plan to VBSR.

VBSR's on-line calculator, which launched at our 24th Annual Spring Conference, lists a range of possible funding sources and allows business leaders to find ways to replace the current spending in the system with a fair and sustainable financing package.  $2.2 billion is needed to replace private premiums in 2017. The tool was designed by Green River, a VBSR-member software company based out of Brattleboro, and the tax methodology was prepared by Steve Kappel, the founder of Policy Integrity in Montpelier.

Click here to try the online calculator today - and don't forget to hit the "Suggest this plan to VBSR" button to submit your proposal to us!


300+ Attend VBSR's 24th Annual Spring Conference  
Missed It?! Save the Date for VBSR's Fall Conference in Southern Vermont: November 19th
On May 14, over 300 forward-thinking business professionals packed the UVM's LEED Certified Davis Center in Burlington for a day of networking, inspiration, and education. Attendees participated in 15 different workshops, networked with like-minded colleagues, and exchanged ideas, strategies, and best practices for incorporating a triple-bottom-line approach to business. Special thank you to Congressman Peter Welch, Alissa Gravitz, and Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin for taking time to speak to our guests both from the podium and on the floor. Thanks as well to our Champion members, underwriters and exhibitors. And finally, thank you to all of our attendees! If we didn't have business leaders willing to engage in these conversations, there wouldn't be a conference to attend.  
If you attended the Spring Conference, please click here to provide feedback on the event. We'll use what we learn to put on an even better conference next time around! 
Even though the conference is in the books, we'd like to invite  you to stay engaged... and here are a few ways to do so:   


*Click here to check out the photos of the conference on our facebook page. Tag yourself and your friends and let others know about the day!  
*Ask questions and start discussions on our LinkedIn group.   
*Several attendees live-tweeted their experience. Check out this tagboard of #VBSRspring tweets!

*Visit our conference webpage to view some of the Powerpoint presentations from the conference.

*Listen to "The Mark Johnson Show," which aired live from the conference on the 14th and featured Andrea Cohen, Chris Miller, Brad
Edmondson, Rebecca Towne, and Robyn Freedner-Maguire.     

*Finally, click here to listen to Wednesday's edition of "The Vermont Conversation." Our host David Goodman was joined by a number of presenters, as well as VBSR's own Andrea Cohen and Scott Buckingham.

Thanks again to everyone who joined us on the 14th! Hope you'll join us at our Fall Conference on November 19th at Mount Snow! 
Intern Program Receives 2014 Funding 
Vermont Organizations Supporting PAID Internships      

Since 2008, the Vermont Intern Program has been fully funded by the Vermont Department of Labor's Next Generation Internship Grant and for the past several years we have also received support from UVM Continuing and Distance Education. 


This year we are pleased to once again announce support from these organizations for 2014! Their commitment to workforce development and growing Vermont's economy through PAID internships is vital to the success of the state and our organization. Please join us in thanking them!


If we've helped you, you want our help, contact Roxanne today at roxannev@vbsr.org or (802) 862-8347.  

BEA's Inaugural Class Exceeds Efficiency Goal
Class Reduces Energy Consumption by 5.6%

VBSR is pleased to announce that the member businesses in the Business Energy Action (BEA) challenge have reduced their overall energy consumption by 5.6%, beating the program's stated goal of 5%.

Companies ranging from law offices to restaurants, from a single employee to some of the state's biggest employers, all worked to reduce their footprint from electricity and heating needs. With year two of the program well underway -- including 30 additional participating businesses -- Business Energy Action continues to improve the energy picture in Vermont with tangible results for BEA members. 


Click here to read the success stories of VBSR members Innovative Bodywork and Maclay Architects.  


Business Energy Action is funded with two federal grants that were received with support from Senator Leahy and Senator Sanders.

VBSR Members "Get-Together" in Rutland
80+ Attend Small Dog and Green Mountain Power Get-Together

Over 80 forward-thinking businesses professionals gathered on May 1st in Rutland for our May Networking Get-Together. The event, co-hosted by Small Dog Electronics and Green Mountain Power, featured lively conversation, networking, tours of GMP's Energy Innovation Center, and terrific company.  Sponsors and presenters discussed the affordability of "going green," carbon footprint mitigation, e-waste recycling, new ways of thinking about divestment, and the importance of socially responsible business practices.  


After touring the beautiful Green Mountain Power Energy Innovation Center, guests traveled around the block to help Small Dog Electronics celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the Rutland store. Check out photos of the evening here.  


2014 Spring Conference on The VT Convo
Wednesdays, 1 PM -- AM550 FM96.1


VBSR's weekly radio show, "The Vermont Conversation," has brought in some big-name guests and discussed some heavy topics this year. Recently, Scott Buckingham sat down with David Goodman to preview our 2014 Spring Conference, followed by a live show from the 2014 VBSR Spring Conference! In the past few weeks we've also explored GMO Labeling, as well as hunger and domestic violence issues in our state.    


Our show airs every Wednesday at 1 PM on WDEV, but if you've missed any of "The Vermont Conversation" broadcasts, you can stream them at your convenience: 


May 21: Vermont's Quiet Health Care Revolution
May 14: LIVE! From the VBSR Spring Conference

May 7:  VBSR Spring Conference Preview, Sexual Assault on Campus  

April 30:  Fighting Poverty with Jobs & Recycling 

April 23:  GMO Labeling and Domestic Surveillance 

April 16:  The New Face of Hunger in Vermont  


Have an idea for a show or want to be on "The Vermont Conversation"? Email us today.



Marketplace Offers
Use YOUR Credits!  


Looking for some creative ways to take advantage of one of your member benefits? Check out the VBSR Marketplace!  Are you missing out on a new customer base? Are you wasting additional resources? Your fellow VBSR members are actively trading without you! Check out these recent purchases that have been made in the marketplace:

  • Wellness services from Mischul Brownstone  
  • VBSR conference attendance
  • Staff retreat space rental at Common Ground
  • Snacks for an event from YOLO
  • Gift certificate for a Yestermorrow class  
  • Crackers Crisps Crepes desserts for a gathering
  • Email newsletter writing 
  • Gift certificates for The Skinny Pancake and Leonardo's Pizza

Do you have excess capacity? Marketplace members are looking to purchase catering, used office equipment, body work, consulting, and more. It's free to activate and post listings, and is an easy way to stretch your budget.


Want to take advantage of one of these offers or place your own? Click here.  

Don't have a VBSR Marketplace account? Get started today; use what you have to buy what you need!  


Member Benefits Corner 
New Member to Member Offers Rolling In

Since VBSR re-launched the Member-to-Member offering benefit, new offers have been rolling in, and some even support VBSR's efforts. Scroll down to check out some of the new offerings, or click here to see a listing of the 70+ offers on our website!

LineSync Architecture
: 50% initial consultation for architecture projects and/or planning. If this results in our continued working together, LineSync Architecture will also donate $100 to VBSR in your name.
Contact: Julie Lineberger Web: http://www.LineSync.com


Bitybean, LLC: 10% off orders on our website. 

Contact: Doug Hartwell Web: www.bitybean.com 

Upcoming VBSR Events
VBSR has some great events coming up next month! We look forward to seeing you soon! Click on the title to learn more and get registration info! 


June 3: Southern Vermont VBSR Chapter Meeting 

VBSR members and friends are invited to attend an evening of networking with VBSR Southern Vermont Chapter members at Whetstone Station in Brattleboro. Attendees will have a chance to meet other forward-thinking business professionals from Southern Vermont who are also interested in the triple-bottom line approach to business. Attendees are encouraged to bring stories about their newest green initiatives to share, as well as business cards to pass out. Light appetizers for early arrivals; cash bar.  


June 24: VBSR Networking Get-Together Hosted by Aqua Vitea 

Join VBSR members and forward thinking business professionals for an evening of networking in Bristol, Vermont! Taste Aqua Vitea's amazing product line, learn what SR means to the team and see how Aqua Vitea is bringing Kombucha to the masses in a sustainable way. 



Sponsorships for this Get-Together are available! See info below, or contact Russ to sponsor today!

$175 (limit of 8 per event) - Includes:

  • 60 seconds to speak at event
  • logo and 75-100 word company description with link to sponsor's website on VBSR event webpage
  • logo with weblink email invitations to VBSR's database of businesses in and around the host county
  • logo on mailed post-card invite to around 700 businesses and on displays at event
  • social media thank you's and promotion

Interested in sponsoring or hosting an event? Email Scott.    

Member Events
Upcoming Member Events

June 4-6: Slow Living Summit - (Strolling of the Heifers)
June 6: Summer Sessions - (Magic Hat)

Log-on to VBSR's website to post an event. Forgot your password? Send us an email! 

Member Jobs
Recently Posted Member Jobs 
Log-on to VBSR's website to post a job. Forgot your password? Send us an email!

Looking for an internship? Click here for our most recent listings. 
Member News  
We want your news and press releases!! Submit or post a story on our Facebook page or send Russ an email...
News items will be posted in the "Member News" section of our website and will be considered for inclusion in VBSR's monthly E-News.

American Lung Association and UVM Launch "Vermont Idle Free" Thanks to a grant from the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation, the American Lung Association has teamed up with the University of Vermont Certification for Sustainable Transportation, to launch Vermont Idle Free, a free online certification for Vermont diesel truck drivers and fleet managers about the benefits of idling reduction.

This program can have a powerful impact resulting in cost savings, increased employee buy-in, and healthier employees!


There are several options for drivers to take the course:

1. ALA can provide a company/organization/town with a link to the program, and each employee can access the training through that link.

2. ALA can provide a group training. With a facilitator, drivers and employees can attend and complete the course together.

3. For independent drivers, they can request a link from team@erating.com or call the Lung Association at 876-6860.



Route 802 Selected to Produce "Official Vermont State App"

Following a rigorous selection process, Route 802 has been chosen to develop Vermont's official tourism mobile app, VisitVT, for the Vermont Chamber of Commerce and Vermont Department of Tourism and Marketing.  "This resource is not just an app, or a guide, its a core component to an interactive digital marketplace. Our goal is to bring together communities, merchants and consumers to enhance the Vermont experience through integrated mobile technologies" said Al Levy, Founder of Route 802.  "We are providing an efficient and effective way to reach Vermont's mobile audience with actionable, location-based and commerce-driven mobile tools." Check out the whole story here... congrats Route802! 




Dinse Law Firm Partners With Fellow VBSR Member Encore Redevelopment To Go Solar Dinse, Knapp & McAndrew PC

proudly announces the completion of a renewable energy project intended to reduce the firm's carbon footprint. Dinse serves as counsel to clients financing and developing renewable energy projects in Vermont and New York and will benefit from the power generated by the 16.5 kW project consisting of 55 300-watt solar panels on the roof of the firm's building at 209 Battery Street in Burlington, Vermont. The installation was coordinated by Encore Redevelopment of Burlington, Vermont, and was commissioned on April 9, 2014. Check out the scope of the project here.  



Sovernet and Fletcher Allen to Work Together Sovernet Communications

announced recently that Fletcher Allen Health Care has chosen Sovernet's fiber network for its latest data transport needs. Sovernet has built a 300 megabits per second (Mbps) wide area network (WAN) connection between Fletcher Allen and its Berlin affiliate, Central Vermont Medical Center.  The link is being used to securely transport medical images and data between the two entities to streamline care and reduce duplication of efforts to care for their shared patients. We're always happy to see members working with members... check out the complete story here. 

US Treasury Awards $4.5 Million to VEDA to Help Small Business in Vermont Access Capital
The US Treasury Department recently announced the transfer of $4,477,238 in State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) funds to the Vermont Economic Development Authority (VEDA) to help local businesses access the capital they need to expand, grow and hire.  Specifically, VEDA will use the funds to leverage greater levels of private lending to small businesses by partnering with local community banks. According to the most recent SSBCI quarterly report, participating states accelerated their expenditure, obligation or transfer of SSBCI funds in 2013, more than doubling the amount reaching small businesses or investment funds.

VPT changes name to Vermont PBS
Vermont Public Television recently announced the station's rebranding to Vermont PBS, to better reflect its evolving mission as a multi-platform media company and to align itself more closely with the national PBS organization. Over the past few years, and especially with the advent of new digital technologies, the statewide PBS affiliate has steadily expanded its content offerings and community engagement activities, as part of its ongoing commitment to improving the quality of life for Vermonters. Read more here.


Thank you VBSR Champion Members for your ongoing support!


   Ben and Jerry'sGardener's Supply
as of 12/17/12
Main Street Landing LogoNew Chapter newRenewable NRG 8/2013

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 committed to a multiple bottom line approach to business that values people, planet and profit.


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Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility
255 South Champlain Street, Suite 11
Burlington, Vermont 05401
(802) 862-8347