The Highlight Reel: GoGreen ’09

Wow! Was GoGreen ’09 an incredible day or what? We’re so lucky to have such an engaging, passionate business community in Portland—and one that is keen on being green as well. The GoGreen Team would like to extend a great big “THANK YOU” to all of our speakers, sponsors, exhibitors and our attendees! Each and every one of you played a crucial role is creating a success-filled day of learning at The Gerding last week. We are so inspired by all of you!

Some new, exciting things happened at GoGreen ’09 and we’d like to share a few of our favorite moments and takeaways from the day over the next week. If you weren’t able to make it, we’re confident that these nuggets of green goodness will inspire you to look into the vast local network of resources available to businesses who want to become more sustainable.

Eco-Visionary Session

This year we gathered four of the most influential and inspiring women working the front lines of corporate responsibility and sustainability. Darcy Winslow (DSW Collective), Sheri Flies (Costco), Sarah Severn (Nike) and Joyce LaValle (Interface, Inc.) showed us the bigger picture—that sustainability includes social responsibility. They all gave great insights to the philosophic argument for a sustainable global economy and a few extra goodies, including a book list!

  • Sheri Flies’ crucial statement on the right to access: “We need major shifts beyond our niche. Green needs mainstream. Everyone should have access to green products.”
  • Darcy Winslow reminded us that there isn’t one lever we can pull to affect massive change—it’s about building systemic change with individual actions and welcoming the challenges that come with such an extensive undertaking.
  • Joyce LaValle noted that eliminating waste in your production cycle is an important, cost-effective and efficient place to start, but that collaboration and partnerships with others are the key to integrating sustainability into your on-going business development.
  • Sarah Severn challenged us to look at sustainability as a component of being socially responsible and to, “stay true to [our] highest intention,” by avoiding easy outs + political games.

Books That Will Change Your Worldview

All four of our eco-visionaries agreed that access to the right information can change the course of history. They strongly recommended the following:

The Twitter Brigade

Not only did we explore the power of social media via a special panel with local experts on the subject, but we also put social media’s reach to work. A group of 60 Twitter users spread the green gospel throughout the day and inspired our tens of thousands of collective followers to start living and working more sustainably!

Here is a sampling of the incredibly effective way our attendees shared their experience with others.

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If you aren’t already following us on Twitter and Facebook, we’d love to have you join us! We’ll be continuing to spread news, insights and information on local, regional and global sustainability topics and events—AND we’re gearing up for GoGreen Seattle in April 2010!


The GoGreen Conference is only as good as what our attendees get out of it. So what were your takeaways? We’d love to know! Send us a link to your blog or post your thoughts in the comments. We’ll be following up with more highlights over the next week, but in the meantime, check out what one of our attendees and one of our speakers had to say about their experiences at GoGreen ’09!

Melanie Adamson

Darcy Winslow/DSW Collective

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