Archive for April, 2009

SILC’s New Website: Great Resources for Building Diversity


Maryanne Howland of Ibis Communications and Russ Gaskin of Green America worked with SILC (Social Impact Leadership Coalition) to create an updated site which has new resources designed to bridge the gap between businesses led by people of color and businesses that consider themselves to be “socially responsible.” Check it out at!

The site makes a compelling case to businesses owners about the need for greater diversity and inclusion in their companies, and includes practical tools (case studies, best practices, and online resources) to help them pursue a more effective diversity agenda.
The site also has information about Social Venture Institutes (geared toward small business leaders in the field of socially responsible enterprise) and profiles of SVN and SILC members on

April 17, 2009 at 10:58 pm Leave a comment

Welcome to SVN IMPACT, our new blog

Welcome to SVN’s new blog, SVN IMPACT! We’ve launched this as part of our new digital vision, in an effort to share more stories from SVN’s innovative leaders, with each other and the wider world.

Why another blog? We know our members are busy so we’ve focused on where SVN provides unique value.  SVN IMPACT will:

  • Aggregate the best stories, news, connections, and IMPACT from our community
  • Enable us to share content, photos, videos, and opinions that come from our real world events
  • Provide content more often, in real time, with a more personal voice, with more voices contributing
  • Connect with other member connection tools like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, to meet people where they are


April 16, 2009 at 6:42 pm 1 comment

Trish Karter Riding 1,500 Miles

Dancing Deer Ride

On the occasion of Dancing Deer’s 15th anniversary, Chief Deer and SVN Board Member Trish Karter is taking the company’s double bottom line mission on the road. On April 22nd, Trish will begin a 15-day, 1,500-mile journey arriving home for Mother’s Day taking her from Atlanta to Boston. She’ll stay at homeless shelters and bring the Deers’ tradition of Gingerbread house-making, engage the public in a conversation about how to end homelessness, and stop at the Capitol Steps to call on Washington to make ending homelessness a priority.

Through her advocacy work and Dancing Deer’s partnership with the Boston-based nonprofit, One Family, Trish has seen many families wrestle with the challenges of homelessness over the years. Since 2001, Dancing Deer has donated 35% of the revenues from its Sweet Home Product line to fund scholarships for homeless mothers in Massachusetts to continue their education as a pathway to self-sufficiency. The One Family Scholars program, created in 2002 by the Paul and Phyllis Fireman Foundation, currently provides 125 formerly homeless and at-risk moms in Massachusetts with flexible funding, mentoring, leadership training, and a range of other supports that enable them to pursue careers that earn enough to support their children, with proven results: no graduate of the program has ever returned to shelter.

Learn more and follow Trish at: Best wishes on your incredible ride!

April 15, 2009 at 12:37 am Leave a comment

Vote for an SVN member for a Social Enterprise Award!

SVN members nominated by BusinessWeek

Help an SVN-er win a Business Week Social Entrepreneurship Award

Business Week Magazine is now conducting an online vote for its Social Entrepreneurship Awards and four out of the 25 nominees are led by SVN members! We encourage you to click here to check out the finalists, then click here to vote for your favorite. No email entry or other registration is required, and voting takes only about ten seconds. Several of the finalists are SVN members, including:

  • Impact Makers: a profit- and performance-driven competitive social venture that directs all profits directly to its charity partner (RxPartnership, which provides free pharmaceuticals to uninsured medical patients)
  • CleanFish: he company connects small-scale fish suppliers with distributors to get sustainable seafood to restaurant kitchens and supermarkets, in an effort build a market for sustainable aquaculture and wild fishing that doesn’t damage the environment
  • IceStone: recycled residential and commercial surface materials by removing waste from the production stream
  • Revolution Foods: deliver nutritious and healthy lunches to more than 20,000 lunches to more than 100 schools in the Bay Area and Los Angeles
  • Stonyfield Farm: all natural and organic yogurt

Support an SVN member and vote today!

April 13, 2009 at 8:48 pm Leave a comment

Brenda Palms Barber in Chicago Magazine

Brenda Palms Barber

Sweet Beginnings’ Brenda Palms Barber was recently featured in Chicago magazine. The article highlights her work in Chicagoland’s North Lawndale area to teach beekeeping skills to local ex-offenders, who raise bees that produce honey made into a line of organic honey and beeswax-based products. Sweet Beginnings currently carries spa products like lip balm and shower gel, as well as honey (naturally).

To date, more than 100 people have graduated from Sweet Beginnings’ job training program, with only three graduates to returning to incarceration—an unbelievably low rate of recidivism!

Want to learn more? On Sunday, April 26th at the end of the SVN 2009 Annual Member Gathering, we’ll be taking a field trip to Sweet Beginnings’ facilities to check their work out in person! Please book a Sunday evening flight if you’d like to be a part of this inspiring visit.

And check out the Beeline Store to order products from Sweet Beginnings’ selection of socially responsible and high-quality honey-based products at Congratulations, Brenda!

April 8, 2009 at 4:59 pm Leave a comment

Van Jones in the White House

Van Jones

We’re so excited about SVN’s own Van Jones, Founding president of Green for All, working with the Obama Administration as a special adviser on green jobs with the White House Council on Environmental Quality. In his new role, Van will be responsible for creating new green jobs with the help of newly-appropriated stimulus funds. Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, currently head of the South Bay AFL-CIO Labor Council and Working Partnerships USA, will join Green For All this month as its CEO, continuing Van’s work to bridge economic justice and environmental sustainability. Congratulations to both Van and Phaedra! Read the US News & World Report article. Learn more about Green for All at

April 6, 2009 at 4:45 pm Leave a comment

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April 2009