Sustainable Florida Logo

Envision Florida!

In This Issue
Green School Finalists
Meet the Winners!
Great Upcoming Events!
We love our Board!
Quick Links
Join Our List
Join Our Mailing List
Issue 83
 October 2012


We begin this issue with a thank you. I want to personally and professionally thank Joe Kilsheimer - our outgoing Board Chair. He is and has been an incredible true believer in our mission and consummate promoter of our message. For more than two years he served as Chairman during a difficult transition time. His leadership has kept the Board focused on the horizon. If you see him - tell him thanks for helping to ensure a Sustainable Florida.


Sustainable Florida is now entering its twenty-second year working to promote the adoption of sustainable development principles through education and more. Sustainable Florida promotes sustainable best management practices through collaborative educational efforts throughout Florida. And we are not alone. You can meet some of the exciting groups in this edition. 


We had a great crowd to celebrate the nominees, finalists and winners of the 2012 Sustainable Florida Best Practice Awards presented by Covanta Energy in Palm Beach Gardens last month. It was a wonderful and inspiring event. You can meet the winners below. (We announced them on our Twitter and Facebook accounts first. Do you follow us?)


Now we turn our attention to the Florida Green School Award nominees and finalists. The finalists are highlighted below. Join us next week for the Florida Green School Network awards program the night before the Learn Green Conference. Next Thursday - October 18 - at the West Palm Beach Marriott at 6:30 PM. Get your tickets now!


With elections at our last Board meeting, we have new officers and are now looking for a few new Board members. Interested? Give me a call. Meet the new Board below.


Otherwise, help us reimagine our next steps. We want to solve problems and help make Florida a better place. On what do you suggest we set our sights? Let us know.


And, there are a few events coming over the next couple months. We encourage you to check them out and learn more.


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.
Florida Green Schools, Teachers and Students to be Honored Next Week
Archbold Expeditions 
Learning Green is Universal


The Florida Green School Network - composed of the Department of Environmental Protection, Department of Education, Department of Health, Florida's Foundation and Sustainable Florida - named 16 finalists for the 2011-2012  Florida Green School Awards program.


Three finalists from K-12 public and private schools statewide have been selected in each of the five categories: students, classrooms, teachers, schools and school districts that have implemented resource-saving projects.


One state winner within each category will be announced at the Florida Green Schools Awards Ceremony and Banquet scheduled for Oct. 18, 2012. This year, the awards banquet will take place at the West Palm Beach Marriott Hotel.



Student Finalists

- Lisa Paniale, Audubon Elementary School, Brevard County

- Laurie Mecca (P. J. OWL Team), Pine Jog Elementary, Palm Beach County

- Wayne Oelfke, Ft. White High School, Columbia County


Class Finalists

- Bridget Cleary, Learning Gate Community School, Hillsborough County

- Deborah Pate, A.K. Suter Elementary School, Escambia County

- Hector Escobedo, TERRA Environmental Research Institute, Miami-Dade County

- Neil Gleitz, Pine View School, Sarasota County


Teacher Finalists

- Alexis Salcedo, TERRA Environmental Research Institute, Miami-Dade County

- Sharon Cutler, Lawton Chiles Elementary School, Hillsborough County

- Wendy Doromal, Timber Creek High School, Orange County


School Finalists

- Driftwood Middle School AHW, Broward County

- Sandalwood High School, Duval County

- Spring Valley School, Pinellas County


School District Finalists

- Duval County School District

- Leon County School District

- Polk County School District


"How often can you point to projects that support learning, create healthier schools, protect the environment and generate over $20 Million in gross cost savings for schools," said Greg Ira, Director of the Department's Office of Environmental Education. "I can't think of a better opportunity to save taxpayer dollars than these low or no-cost projects, and we are only scratching the surface," 


A panel of expert judges selected the finalists based on green school initiatives put in place during the 2011-2012 school year. These initiatives included exemplary environmental projects, recycling programs, green service learning projects, and efforts to make school buildings and communities more sustainable and efficient.


This year, Florida Power and Light Company has been the signature sponsor for the Florida Green School Network, a partnership between the Department, Department of Health, Department of Education, Florida's Foundation and Sustainable Florida which comprise the Florida Green School Network and manage the Florida Green School Awards program. Supporting sponsors for this year's event include Agriculture in the Classroom and Publix.


Congratulations Winners!
CSF Best Practice Award 
Doing Well by Doing Good!


The 2012 Sustainable Florida Best Practice Awards celebrated the best examples of sustainable development and practices in the state. The competition was tough and we are proud to announce the winners in the seven divisions.


Covanta EnergyPresented by Covanta Energy, the special awards dinner was held last month in Palm Beach Gardens. Hope that you can join us next year! Nominations will be open in January!


2012 Winners


Large Business
  • Okeechobee Organics Recycling Facility - the most advanced aerated composting technology to process food residuals in South Florida opened in November 2011 as a result of a forward-thinking, successful partnership between Waste Management, Publix, Florida Power & Light and Garick.

Small Business

  • Bing Energy- a Tallahassee-based startup with plans to revolutionize the production of power by creating a new generation of hydrogen fuel cells that are less expensive, smaller, lighter and more durable than anything available today.


  • City of Boynton Beach and The Boynton Beach CRA - for its Climate Action Plan which incorporates the International Green Construction Code (IGCC), and the Community Redevelopment Agency using Tax Increment Financing partnered to provide incentives to enable a 456 residential unit development, Seabourn Cove, to overcome the costs associated with bringing the development up to a Gold Rating of the American National Standard Institute approved ICC 700-2008 National Green Building Standard.



  • Resource Depot - for collecting and distributing safe, reusable materials to benefit educational and artistic programs for creative learning experiences while preserving the environment.

Green Building

     Presented by Willis A. Smith Construction, Inc.

  • First Green Bank - one of the first banks in the country to have an environmental and social mission to experience enduring success with business leadership contributions to our environment and culture
  • Josh Wynne Construction - builder of the first LEED Platinum home in Florida, his Power Haus project is currently recognized as one of the most energy efficient homes in the country.


  • Hillsborough County & Covanta Hillsborough A public-private partnership that repowers the county's wastewater treatment facility and water treatment plant with energy from the county-owned resource recovery facility operated by Covanta Energy.


  • Jackie Pons - Leon County's superintendent of schools launched a series of important conservation/sustainability projects including a groundbreaking public-private partnership converting school busses to compressed natural gas (CNG). 
What's Happening Around the State
Share Your Good Works


We are engaged with a lot of groups and proud to support their efforts. Whether it's the women business owners conference Go for the Greens or the USGBC South Florida's Gala Verde, there are a lot of folks who are working to promote sustainability. Let us know if we can help you.
Our Board is not Bored
Board graphic 
Business Leaders Make It Happen
As with any non-profit organization there is a Board of Directors who set the policy and help set the tone. It helps when the Executive Director can keep a tune. Together there is beautiful music. So enough with the shameful analogies - basically this organization exists because of the belief and efforts of some great people who volunteer their time to serve on our Board of Directors. And every couple years, Sustainable Florida has an election for new leadership. Meet our officers.

Joe Kilsheimer is now our immediate past Chairman. He did a great job and was recently elected to the Apopka City Commission. I have learned a lot from Joe. And I am glad he will continue to work with us.

Michael Hewett is the Director of Environmental Services and Sustainability for Publix Super Markets. He is a mentor to many and works with a variety of partners. We are lucky to have him. Michael is our new Chairman.

Tammy Brister is a new member of Leadership Florida and our new Vice Chair. Her efforts at Disney Parks and Resorts is both inspiring and fascinating. A Florida native, she is working to help ensure a great state for us and generations to come.

Florette Braun has served for several years on our Board. Her work with Florida Power and Light keeps us plugged in. She is our secretary and ensures that we are working in the right direction.

Ben Parks is our Treasurer. Formerly with the Florida Farm Bureau and now with Florida Crystals, Ben ensures that we understand all of Florida's economy including the importance of agriculture. And he keeps the books balanced.

And, while not an officer, she has an even more important role now - we congratulate Jenni Williams on becoming a new mom!
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 member and let us help tell your awesome story!