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Archive for March, 2015

Global Water Issues and Minnesota Business: Values, Risks, and Opportunities

March 31st, 2015

The Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul region has been described by one CEO as the “Silicon Valley of Water” with a unique network of businesses, talent, and thought leadership well positioned to contribute solutions to regional and global water challenges.

Join the Center for Ethical Business Cultures (CEBC) at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business on April 29 to hear from global water expert Dr. Peter H. Gleick, co-founder and president of the Pacific Institute. Gleick integrates technical expertise on water and the environment with a profound commitment to social justice, human rights, and sustainability.

Two Minnesota executives will also share their insights on water risks and opportunities: Emilio Tenuta, Vice President of Sustainability at Ecolab, and Jerry Lynch, Chief Sustainability Officer at General Mills.

This event is free and open to the public but registration is required.


Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Registration:  4:00 p.m.
Program: 4:30 p.m.
Networking Reception: 6:15 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Register »

Thornton Auditorium, Terrence Murphy Hall
University of St. Thomas – Minneapolis Campus
1000 LaSalle Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55403
Map & Directions »

I hope you will join CEBC for this important conversation to explore global water perspectives and implications for Minnesota businesses. For more information about the event, speakers, or to register visit CEBC’s website.

David Rodbourne


Vice President, Center for Ethical Business Cultures - University of St. Thomas, Opus College of Business

Congratulations 2015 Award Finalists

March 18th, 2015

This is one of my favorite blog posts to write each year! Congratulations to the outstanding projects and partnerships selected as the 2015 Environmental Initiative Award finalists.2015 Awards Logo

Earlier this week a group of seventeen judges from business, government, and nonprofit organizations met to discuss project nominations from all over the state. They selected three finalist projects in each category (and one winner). Winners will be announced “Academy Award Style” on Thursday, May 21 at Nicollet Island Pavilion in Minneapolis. Check out this year’s group of inspiring projects below:


Judges: Tracy Babler-Nordquist, Tracy Babler & Associates; Katie Galloway, Aveda Corporation; Jason Willett, Metropolitan Council


Judges: Annie Perkins, Andersen Corporation; Anu Ramaswami, University of Minnesota


Judges: Sam Hanson, Minnesota Waste Wise; Shri Ramaswamy, University of Minnesota; Lark Weller, National Park Service


Judges: Christina Nicholson, Mississippi Market; Julie Mackenzie, Mindsailing, Farmer; Emily Torgrimson, Eat for Equity


Judges: Mark Lundgren, MSA Professional Services; Joe Otte, Wenck Associates; John Pearson, Minnesota Public Radio


Judges: Sarah Braman, Dakota County; Thaddeus Owen, Herman Miller; Bob Warner, Warners’ Stellian

Congratulations to this outstanding group of finalists! Thanks to the judges who shared their time with us. I would also like to thank Medtronic for hosting our judging event, as they have for many, many years. Thank you, Medtronic!

Finally, I hope you will join more than 450 environmental leaders for networking, dinner, and a celebration of Minnesota’s most innovative and collaborative success stories of the year. The big party is on Thursday, May 21st. Full tables (seating 10) and individual tickets are on sale now – Friday, May 8. Don’t miss it!

Andrea Robbins


Director, Engagement and Systems

Member of the Month: Flint Hills Resources

March 4th, 2015

The Flint Hills Resources Pine Bend refinery collaborates with a variety of Minnesota organizations that focus on environmental stewardship, safety, and education. Environmental Initiative is fortunate to be one of those organizations, as our strong partnership goes back to the early 2000s. Located in Rosemount, the Flint Hills Resources Pine Bend refinery is a leading producer of transportation fuels used in the Upper Midwest.BusBanner1

Flint Hills Resources is a founding sponsor of Project Green Fleet, and played a critical role in helping us advance the program in 2014. Flint Hills provided $1 million which allowed us to complete Project Green Fleet’s school bus retrofit program and build the foundation for phase two of the program, which focuses on reducing emissions from diesel construction vehicles. Since Project Green Fleet began in 2005, more than 4,600 diesel vehicles have been voluntarily retrofitted, which is comparable to taking 750,000 cars off of Minnesota roads.

Flint Hills Resources is also a primary sponsor of Environmental Initiative’s
Clean Air Minnesota project, which focuses on bringing businesses, nonprofits, and governments together to explore new opportunities for collaboration to improve air quality in Minnesota.

We look forward to continuing our longstanding partnership with Flint Hills, and we thank the organization for all it does to support outstanding air quality in Minnesota! To learn more about the Flint Hills Resources Pine Bend refinery, visit its new website, PineBendRefinery.com.

A note from Environmental Initiative:
Each month, we feature information about one of our members on the Initiative blog and on our website. Contact Sacha Seymour-Anderson anytime at 612-334-3388 ext. 101 to learn more about this membership benefit.

Sacha Seymour-Anderson


Development Director
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