Author Archives: socialenterprises

Green Line Series | Meet Michele Crim, New Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Portland, Oregon

Michele Crim Blog GraphicWe were thrilled to have the opportunity to learn more about Michele Crim,  Portland’s new Chief Sustainability Officer, who now leads 40+ staff in the development and implementation of policies and programs focused on climate action, waste reduction and recycling, energy efficiency and renewables, emerging mobility, green building, business assistance, and community outreach and engagement. She led the development of Portland’s award-winning Climate Action Plan (2015) and seeks to ensure Portland’s marginalized communities reap the benefits of those efforts. Check out what we learned and hear more at GoGreen Conference Portland next week on October 10th.

As the new Chief Sustainability Officer for the City of Portland, what are some of your long and short-term goals?

We are in a time of tremendous change and there is an urgency to act that hasn’t really existed before. From climate change to racial justice, we are at a critical crossroads that means our collective work – public, private, non-profit, academia, advocacy – is more important than ever before. My short-term goals are to continue the important work we already have before us (as outlined in the Portland Plan, the Climate Action Plan and the Comprehensive Plan) and ensure we deliver on the commitments we’ve already made. In terms of mid and long-term goals, I’m eager to push hard on some of our seemingly impossible challenges. We no longer have the luxury of nibbling around the edges of some of the big stuff we know we need to tackle, from  our energy systems to addressing emissions from the goods and services we consume – and everything in between.

You will be a part of our Closing Plenary, where you will discuss how climate change impacts our generation. How do you see climate change and the economy as interrelated?

Portland’s early work on climate created opportunities for local companies to develop clean technology, innovative products and sustainability expertise that have since been exported around the world. Our local policies and programs and initiative from sustainable business leaders drove that demand. As Portland considers future policies and programs, we must be more intentional about driving economic opportunity. Special care and intention must be paid to ensuring that those opportunities extend deeply into those communities that have historically been left behind and not benefited from climate action, most especially communities of color and low-income populations.

What is an example of a policy that the City of Portland has enacted that integrates equity in its design?

Portland is known internationally for our work to integrate equity into the 2015 Climate Action Plan. From high level vision setting, to specific actions and policies, that plan was greatly informed by the perspectives and expertise of Portland’s frontline communities. That work built the capacity of our staff and community members to understand the linkages between equity and climate action. However, it didn’t go far enough. The City of Portland and Multnomah County will be updating the Climate Action Plan in 2020. To go farther we won’t be looking to our frontline communities to simply inform our work. Instead, we’ll invite them to be collaborators in the design. The design community describes this as co-creation. It will require us to build new skills and mindsets as designers, and create structural and institutional changes in order to be successful.

For more information about join us at GoGreen Conference – Portland on October 10th, 2018. Visit for more information and to purchase tickets.

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GoGreen '09 Line-Up Announced!

Business Owners Get Their Green On at GoGreen ‘09: 40 Business Leaders Share Secrets and Value to Building a Sustainable Business

Social Enterprises, Inc. is thrilled to announce the full-day itinerary and speaker line-up for the second annual Go Green Conference, which will take place in Portland on Wednesday, October 7, 2009 at the Gerding Theater in the Pearl District. Go Green ‘09 will present the regional business community with the unique opportunity to learn from over 40 local business leaders, who will share their expertise on a variety of sustainability topics, aimed at giving business owners and professionals new ideas and strategies for increasing sustainability in all areas of the workplace.

GoGreen ‘09 will offer participants concrete steps and solutions for making their business more sustainable through interactive panel-style sessions with valuable Q&A opportunities during each topic.

Featured Conference Topics/Sessions for 2009:

  • Portland’s Best Sustainable Business Showcase: Learn from Portland’s 2009 BEST Business + Oregon’s 100 Best Green Companies Award Winners
  • Electric Vehicles: Investment, Implications and Economic Opportunities for Business
  • Social Media and Your Sustainable Message: Maximize Outreach through Online Forums
  • Writing Your Sustainability Plan: Develop a Framework and Process to Advance Sustainable Objectives
  • Authentic Storytelling in the Age of Green washing: An Interactive Dialogue and Discovery of Fact, Contradiction and Possibility
  • Improve Your Sustainability Credentials: Opportunities for Continuing Education and Certification
  • Oregon on the Leading Edge: Public and Private Initiatives Creating Economic Opportunities
  • Carbon Footprint Analysis: Tools for Measuring and Reducing Your Company’s Environmental Impact
  • Growing Green Ideas: Develop Solid Business Plans to Increase Funding Opportunities
  • Trendsetters: Business Culture Shift to Sustainability

Featured 2009 speakers include Governor Ted Kulongoski, Kate Brown/Oregon Secretary of State, Jeff Cogen/Multnomah County Commissioner, Susan Anderson/Director, Bureau of Planning & Sustainability, Rob Bennett/Director, Portland+Oregon Sustainability Institute, Scott Marshall/Associate Dean, Portland State University, Nik Blosser/Founder, Celilo Group, Carrie Farrar/The Standard, Marsha Willard/Founder, AXIS, Inc, Ruta Stabina/University of Oregon Sustainability Leadership, Charlie Allcock/Portland General Electric, Mark Perry/Nissan Americas, Anne Weaver/CEO, Elephants Delicatessen, Sarah Hall/Wells Fargo, Scott Davis/From the Rooftops, Mark Brady/Oregon Economic Community Development Department, Josh Skov/Principal, Good Company, Colin Sears/Portland Development Commission, Alison Sokol Blosser/Sokol Blosser Winery, Gary Hirsch/On Your Feet, Mike Mercer/Northwest Earth Institute, Clark Brockman/SERA Artchitects, Michael Jung/Silver Springs, Chris Enlow/KEEN and Jason Graham-Nye/Founder, gDiapers to name just a portion of the line-up.

Eco-entrepreneurs Ericka Dickey, Founder of Social Enterprises, Inc. and Stephanie Knight, Founder of Greenlemonaide started the Go Green Conference series because they saw a need for knowledge and idea sharing regarding the best and latest sustainable business practices. They wanted to create an event that would have a sizeable positive impact for businesses like their own, the local community and the environment. The result is a learning laboratory with leading experts, committed eco-minded business owners and green community activists to forge a new business model which looks upon the green line and the bottom line as equally important.

Full-Day Registration is $150 for a full day pass, $125 with the purchase two or more.

We hope you will join us!!

Oregon Sustainability Center Open House

We were happy we attended the Oregon Sustainability Center’s open house last night in the Brewery Blocks Building in the Pearl District. The teams at Gerding Edlen Development, SERA Architects and GBD Architects were awarded this new prestigous project that is monumental for Portland. The project team’s notes covered the walls at the opening and were fascinating to review. The topics covered all elements of how to maximize and optimize a living building. We look forward to hearing how this progress has progressed at GoGreen ’09 in Portland on October 7th!

City of Portland and Multnomah County 2009 Climate Action Plan

It was exciting to be a part of new developments as Commissioner Jeff Cogen presented the 2009 Climate Action Plan at Portland Business Alliance Sustainability Committee Meeting this morning. The GoGreen Conference was invited to present at this meeting, and we were thrilled to be in attendance with the local business movers and shakers that care about sustainability in Portland. Did you know? Portland is currently the only city in the country in compliance with the Kyoto Protocol.

The most promising highlights that Multnomah County is working on in conjunction with the City of Portland:

  • Portland is leading the way in building retrofits; goal is to reduce total energy use of all buildings built before 2010 by 25 percent
  • Reduce vehicle emissions by 50% and fuel efficiency to 40 MPG
  • Recover 75 percent of all waste generated.

…and there is so much more! It is a thrill to know that Portland is leading the way in on the forefront of sustainability for our and our kids’ future.

GoGreen Conference Co-Founder Stephanie Knight Emcees SHOP Symposium/09 Monday April 6th

Portland business leaders gather at SHOP Symposium/09 THIS Monday, April 6th. Come and meet John Freiss, Founder of Seven Planet, the world’s first chain of green general stores ~ a green and sustainable marketplace for consumer-based products sold within both virtual and traditional storefronts. Don’t miss Randy White, Founder of Bright Neighbor, a community self-sufficiency and technology company that specializes in social collaborations that help communities adapt to the triple threat of economic, ecological, and energy collapse.

Save the Date: October 7th for GoGreen '09

GoGreen ’09 is now confirmed for Wednesday, October 7th in Portland at the Gerding Theater at the Armory, a LEED Platinum designated building. Register early since GoGreen ’08 ~ Portland sold out last year! Stay tuned also for GoGreen ’09 ~ Seattle launching soon! We will be sure to post the latest and greatest details here. We look forward to helping businesses go green in 2009.

GoGreen Speaker – Nike Considered – debuted line today

Jane Savage, Director of Nike Considered, gave fresh insight into sustainability efforts at Nike and shared her expertise at the GoGreen Conference in October 2008.

Here is a brief overview of the article in Portland Business Journal today: Today Nike Inc. debuted Nike Considered Design, a line of products with minimal environmental impact. Their goal is to create products while reducing the waste throughout the development process, using environmentally preferred materials, and eliminating toxics. Nike said it wants all of its footwear to meet its “baseline Considered standards” by 2011, all apparel by 2015 and all equipment by 2020, meaning its supply chain will have to reduce waste by 17 percent and increase the use of environmentally preferred materials by 20 percent.

GoGreen '08 Photo Gallery

Our GoGreen ’08 photo album is now live! Check it out here. Special thanks to our amazing event photographer Amy McMullen.

GoGreen Conference: Thank You

Huge thanks to all that attended, spoke, participated and supported the GoGreen ’08 Conference last week in Portland. The content was extremely valuable, the speakers were lively and the networking was outstanding. We couldn’t have done it without the tremendous support of our speakers, sponsors and exhibitors who help make the event happen. THANK YOU!!! Be sure to SAVE THE DATE for GoGreen ’09 – Thursday, October 1st. Individual email invitations will go out to paid attendees, sponsors, exhibitors and speakers to access our GoGreen HUB which will host video links to ALL 10 sessions at GoGreen ’08, event photos, speaker documentation and much more! We look forward to seeing you all again next year.