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Wells Fargo, UNCF, Terrence ‘J’ Jenkins and Natasha Eubanks Team Up to Empower HBCU Students

Wed, 11/11/2015 - 6:08pm

Today, Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) and UNCF (United Negro College Fund) rallied students from three of the nation’s leading Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) —Clark Atlanta University, Morehouse College and Spelman College —  for an interactive town hall event to promote positive images of African American youth.  HBCU alumni, Terrence ‘J’ Jenkins, actor and philanthropist, and Natasha Eubanks, founder and CEO of TheYBF.com, joined Wells Fargo and UNCF leaders to inspire students to use social media to share personal experiences that proactively address cultural mischaracterizations.

Seeking to broaden the current social narrative involving the African American community, Wells Fargo launched the #MyUntoldSM campaign to offer a more comprehensive perspective on the African American experience.  The social media campaign honors the community tradition of storytelling by creating a platform to share personal stories, history and defining moments– while fostering cultural awareness outside of the community.  The official #MyUntold website (wellsfargo.com/MyUntold) aggregates user-generated and company-produced content (photos, videos and written posts) to offer visitors deeper insight into African American culture.

Today’s My Life, My Story, #MyUntold Town Hall event engaged HBCU students by empowering them to lead and take personal accountability for enlightening others on the full cultural identity of African American youth. Students were invited to contribute their stories at an onsite photo/video booth, and during “man on the street” interviews captured across campus. To further encourage community engagement, the Haitian Club of Spelman College and the Minority Association for Pre-Medical Students of Clark Atlanta University were presented with a $1,000 check to develop programs to support local community organizations.                                 

“Wells Fargo’s #MyUntold campaign is valuable because it provides an important vantage point of the community that extends one-dimensional storytelling,” says Jenkins. “It’s my hope that coming out of this event students will be inspired to become the official storytellers of their community.”

To date, the social media storytelling campaign has generated hundreds of personal stories from across the country. It has become a catalyst for self-expression that showcases diverse experiences among a common culture.

“Wells Fargo is happy to introduce #MyUntold to millennials in this way. We’ve taken the campaign across the country, and people literally wait in line to share their stories. As a company, we appreciate the opportunity to connect directly with the communities we serve in such a personal way,”   says Lisa Frison, vice president, African American Segment manager, Wells Fargo. “HBCU students in particular have the power to become the opinion formers of a generation, and #MyUntold is one way they can use their voice to lead.”

Following the event, students were joined by community members for a #MyUntold themed Instameet. Participants traveled to various campus landmarks to capture photo and video content (to share on Instagram®) that reflects their HBCU experiences.

“Since #MyUntold launched, UNCF has been a strong supporter of the campaign,” says Richard Shropshire, Vice President of Communications and Marketing, UNCF. “This platform aligns with our ongoing relationship with Wells Fargo that includes longstanding support of the UNCF Empower Me Tour and UNCF Evening of Stars, engagement platforms which empower the African American community to aspire to higher education.” 

Wells Fargo continues to promote the campaign through efforts with Oprah.Com and Interactive One, creating custom content, including stories from actor and HBCU alumni, Lance Gross, and Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, Elle Varner. Renowned pastor, author and motivational speaker, Bishop T.D. Jakes recently shared his story about how his father’s sacrifice inspired him to strive for success while reaching back to help others. The company continues to encourage the community to share their own stories using #MyUntold. 

About Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) is a nationwide, diversified, community-based financial services company with $1.8 trillion in assets. Founded in 1852 and headquartered in San Francisco, Wells Fargo provides banking, insurance, investments, mortgage, and consumer and commercial finance through 8,700 locations, 12,800 ATMs, the internet (wellsfargo.com) and mobile banking, and has offices in 36 countries to support customers who conduct business in the global economy. With approximately 265,000 team members, Wells Fargo serves one in three households in the United States. Wells Fargo & Company was ranked No. 30 on Fortune’s 2015 rankings of America’s largest corporations. Wells Fargo’s vision is to satisfy our customers’ financial needs and help them succeed financially. Wells Fargo perspectives are also available at Wells Fargo Blogs and Wells Fargo Stories.

Arby’s Raises More Than $3.7 Million to Help End Childhood Hunger in America, Surpassing Previous Record

Wed, 11/11/2015 - 3:06pm

Arby’s® restaurants across the country raised more than $3.7 million to end childhood hunger in America, surpassing last year’s record-breaking $3.4 million. From August 3 – September 20, participating Arby’s restaurants teamed with guests to collect donations for the Arby’s Foundation, in support of its mission to end childhood hunger in America in partnership with No Kid Hungry.

“Childhood hunger is a serious but solvable issue affecting more than 16 million kids in the U.S.,” said Paul Brown, CEO, Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc.  “Most Americans don’t realize the prevalence or consequences of childhood hunger, which impacts academic achievement and overall health. I’m proud of Arby’s commitment, from our guests, Arby's Restaurant Group, Inc. team members and Arby's franchisees, to achieve our goal of ending childhood hunger through our partnership with No Kid Hungry.”

Twenty-two million children across the country rely on free or reduced lunches during the school year and six out of seven kids do not receive that meal during the summer. As a response, Arby’s Foundation launched the School’s Out, Food’s In initiative, a summer meals program aimed to support children who struggle to find meals when school is out. Since the launch, the Foundation has been able to provide an additional 17 million meals to kids struggling with hunger during the summer months.

“Our vision is that all children will have access to the wholesome food choices they need to learn and grow,” said Christopher Fuller, executive director of the Arby’s Foundation. “The Arby's Foundation is committed to working together with Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. team members, guests, Arby's franchisees and local community organizations towards a day where all children across our country have access to three wholesome meals a day, every day of the year.”

The national fundraiser has generated more than $15 million since 2011. Through these funds and its partnership with No Kid Hungry, Arby’s has helped connect children in need with more than 345 million additional meals across the country.

About Arby’s

Arby’s, founded in 1964, is the first nationally franchised sandwich restaurant brand, with more than 3,300 restaurants worldwide. The Arby’s brand purpose is “Inspiring Smiles Through Delicious Experiences™.” Arby’s delivers on its purpose by celebrating the art of Meatcraft™ with a variety of high-quality proteins paired with crave-able sides, such as Curly Fries and Jamocha shakes.  Arby’s® restaurants are Fast Crafted™, a unique blend of quick-serve speed and value combined with the quality and made-for-you care of fast casual.  Arby’s Restaurant Group, Inc. is the franchisor of the Arby’s brand and is headquartered in Atlanta, Ga. Visit Arbys.com for more information or socially connect with Arby’s at: FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram.

With the current growth and momentum of the Brand, Arby’s is actively seeking new franchisees. To learn more about available markets and requirements, visit DiscoverArbys.com.

About the Arby’s Foundation, Inc.

The Arby’s Foundation, the charitable arm of Arby’s, carries out a mission to end childhood hunger in America. Building on a philanthropic heritage that has contributed over $76 million to child-related causes since its inception in 1986, the Arby’s Foundation is working to ensure every child in America has the meals they need to succeed, especially when school is out. With more than 16 million U.S. children—more than 1 in 5—facing hunger daily, the Arby’s Foundation has devoted its resources to providing education and access to wholesome food choices for children across the country. The Arby’s Foundation is a registered 501 (c) (3) organization headquartered in Atlanta. To learn more, visit www.arbysfoundation.org.  

AEP Develops New Cutting-Edge Transmission Technology

Wed, 11/11/2015 - 12:06pm

American Electric Power develops new, innovative transmission line technology with an efficient, compact and more aesthetically pleasing line design, called BOLD™ (Breakthrough Overhead Line Design).

Developed by two AEP transmission employees, the BOLD™ line design has a smaller physical profile which provides for more efficient land use in the rights-of-way; reduces environmental and visual impacts; and delivers electricity more efficiently. The BOLD™ line capacity is 60 percent higher than conventional 345-kV lines, surpassing that of even a 500-kV line. That means a BOLD™ transmission line can carry as much power as a larger transmission line but requires less land. This makes the BOLD™ technology a great option for transmission line rebuilds and replacement in congested areas. The first BOLD™ transmission line is being built near Fort Wayne, Ind., and will be complete in 2016.

To date, BOLD™ has received seven patents in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Additional patent applications are pending in Europe, China, and South Korea.

Other advantages of BOLD™:

  • Maximize existing right-of-way: BOLD™ provides 40 to 60 percent more capability in the same right-of-way, moving power more efficiently over long distances while potentially deferring the need for additional lines or rights-of-way. The streamlined design has a smaller footprint compared with traditional extra-high voltage lines. 

  • Lower-profile: BOLD™ towers provide a more attractive appearance and are one-third smaller, compared with conventional 345-kV towers.

  • Supports Renewable Energy growth: AEP’s vast transmission network serves a critical function in transporting power from renewable resources to customers. Today, more than 7,500 MW of renewable generation is interconnected to AEP’s transmission system and considerably more is in the queue. Transmission innovations like BOLD™ will support additional renewable integration by making the grid more efficient.

For more information about BOLD™ technology, visit www.boldtransmission.com

UC San Diego and EVgo Form Partnership to Support Innovations in Electric Vehicle Charging and Energy Storage Solutions

Wed, 11/11/2015 - 12:06pm

EVgo, America’s leader in Electric Vehicle DC Fast Charging Solutions, has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of California, San Diego to help support developments in sustainable energy technology.

The agreement formalizes an already strong collaboration focusing on the intersection of electric vehicles and energy storage. 

EVgo is leading two projects at the university.

In the first project, EVgo has constructed a site for assessing how owners of electric vehicle DC charging sites can leverage solar, battery storage, and control systems to mitigate site host demand charges and provide services to the grid.

In the second project, EVgo will begin operating a fleet of bidirectional electric vehicles from Nissan and Honda, including a modified version of the Honda Accord Plug-in Hybrid, to test applicability of vehicle-to-grid technology for California. This vehicle-to-grid initiative builds off of EVgo’s ongoing collaboration with the University of Delaware.  In 2013, EVgo and the University of Delaware, working with PJM Interconnection, brought online the world’s first project where electric vehicles served as an official resource on a power grid.

"Vehicle-to-grid technologies have the potential to reduce the total cost of owning a plug-in vehicle, while enabling higher concentrations of renewable energy on the grid,” said Steven Center, vice president of the Environmental Business Development Office and Product Regulatory Office at American Honda. “We look forward to working with NRG and UC San Diego to accelerate the development of this technology.”

“As the global leader in electric vehicle sales, Nissan is researching ways to integrate the all-electric LEAF into homes, buildings and power grids to unlock new value that could provide future benefits to customers, businesses and utility companies alike,” said Ken Srebnik, Corporate Strategy, Nissan North America. “With projects such as this collaboration with UC San Diego and EVgo, Nissan can gather valuable insights to ensure that our vehicles are ready when similar programs move beyond demonstration and are commercially deployed.”

The energy resources from both projects will feed into UC San Diego’s microgrid, considered one of the most advanced microgrids in the world. Serving more than 45,000 people, the microgrid generates more than 85 percent of the electricity used on campus annually and saves the university more than $8 million a year in power costs. The microgrid is an integrated system of energy sources – including solar, a fuel cell and a cogeneration plant – and energy storage along with the software that controls each system.

As part of the agreement, EVgo is funding UC San Diego faculty and staff to support the projects’ physical installations as well as EVgo’s research, development and demonstration objectives.   

“The integration of renewable energy into the mainstream is one of the keys to helping the State of California meet its aggressive future energy goals,” said Arun Banskota, President, EVgo. “EVgo has a history of innovation and cooperation with academic leaders in this space – and valued automaker partners such as Nissan and Honda – and we will continue to lead through our actions like this agreement with UC San Diego.”

“We are pleased to partner with EVgo on this important endeavor,” said Gary C. Matthews, UC San Diego vice chancellor of Resource Management and Planning. “This is an excellent opportunity to build on efforts to reduce the carbon footprint of the campus while supporting the state’s clean energy goals.”

This collaboration is an opportunity to explore ties between zero emissions vehicles, the increasing use of energy storage, and the integration of renewable energy into the distribution grid.  The increasing adoption of these technologies will have public health benefits, including for low-income communities. 

About UC San Diego
The University of California, San Diego is a student-centered, research-focused, service-oriented public institution that provides opportunity for all. Recognized as one of the top 15 research universities worldwide and born of a culture of collaboration, UC San Diego sparks discoveries that advance society, drive economic growth and positively impact the world. Our students, who learn from Nobel laureates, MacArthur Fellows and National Academy members, are committed to public service. For the sixth consecutive year, UC San Diego has been ranked first in the nation based on research, civic engagement and social mobility. We are one campus with multiple pillars of excellence, a top ten public university that is transforming lives, shaping new disciplines and advancing the frontiers of knowledge. Learn more at www.ucsd.edu.

About EVgo
EVgo leads America’s electric vehicle revolution.  Our mission: Build the nation’s largest EV charging network while improving the planet and boosting the economy.  At home, work, and on the road, we put the right chargers in the right places. Together we unite the EV movement for all, making it unstoppable.   EVgo provides access to hundreds of public charging sites across dozens of major metro areas including Atlanta, Chicago and the greater Washington D.C. area plus many in California, and Texas.  To find out more, or to join the EVgo network, visit www.nrgevgo.com. Connect with EVgo on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @nrgevgo.

Safe Harbor
This communication contains forward-looking statements that may state NRG’s or its management’s intentions, beliefs, expectations or predictions for the future. Such forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks, uncertainties and assumptions, and typically can be identified by the use of words such as “will,” “expect,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “forecast,” “plan,” “believe” and similar terms. Although NRG believes that its expectations are reasonable, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove to have been correct, and actual results may vary materially. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated above include, among others, risks and uncertainties related to the capital markets generally.

America Recycles Day is Nov. 15: Pledge to Recycle!

Tue, 11/10/2015 - 2:53pm

Thousands of creative recycling events are being planned for America Recycles Day (ARD), a Keep America Beautiful initiative, which takes place on and in the weeks leading up to Nov. 15.

America Recycles Day is the only nationally recognized day dedicated to promoting and celebrating recycling in the United States. In its 18th year, ARD educates people about the importance of recycling to our economy and environmental well-being, and helps to motivate occasional recyclers to become everyday recyclers.

A number of ARD special events are focusing on this year’s theme of “Bathrooms, Bags & Gadgets." They include:

  • Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies and its Care to Recycle program are giving away 10,000 bathroom recycling bags this ARD. The objective is to provide a reminder to individuals about what bathroom items are recyclable.

  • CyclePoint® from SourceAmerica®, the 46-member nonprofit eRecycling network whose mission is to create jobs for people with disabilities, will be hosting 50 eRecycling events nationwide, including marquee events in Maryland, Michigan and Oklahoma.

  • More than 100 collection and educational events featuring plastic bag recycling are taking place during 2015 America Recycles Day.

“Bathrooms, Bags & Gadgets” shines a light on some of the everyday but not “top of mind” consumer products, which can and should be given another life through recycling. These include personal care items commonly found in the bathroom, such as haircare and mouthwash bottles; plastic bags, such as those used at retail stores, and plastic wrap used in packaging paper towels, toilet paper or dry cleaning; and consumer electronics and gadgets, such as mobile phones, tablets, game consoles, TVs and more.

“There are so many consumer products beyond aluminum cans and plastic bottles that can be recycled and made into something new and useful, which is why this year’s theme is ‘Bathrooms, Bags and Gadgets,’” said Brenda Pulley, Keep America Beautiful’s senior vice president, recycling. “We also want to encourage people to participate in the ‘I Will Recycle’ online pledge sweepstakes, which is a fun and engaging way to commit to recycling this America Recycles Day.”

“I Will Recycle” Sweepstakes

During ARD 2015, individuals are encouraged to take the “I Will Recycle” Pledge, which runs through Nov. 20. The “I Will Recycle” Sweepstakes will provide four people the chance to win an Apple Certified Refurbished iPad mini 3. Individuals are encouraged to demonstrate their recycling spirit and automatically be entered in the sweepstakes by posting a photo on Twitter at @KABTweet or @RecyclesDay or @KeepAmericaBeautiful on Instagram holding a recyclable product that they pledge to recycle with the hashtags #IWillRecycle and #Sweepstakes. Individuals must enable public viewing of Twitter and Instagram photos. Keep America Beautiful may share tagged social media posts with its fans and four individuals will be selected at random to win an Apple Certified Refurbished iPad mini 3. For more details on how to enter, read the Official Rules.

America Recycles Day Congressional Briefing

Keep America Beautiful, in partnership with the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) and other partners, will host a Congressional briefing for ARD on Wednesday, Nov. 18. The purpose of the briefing is to provide information to Members of Congress and staff about the state of recycling, the business of recycling, its many benefits, and the importance of engaging individuals to recycle.  

Other featured ARD 2015 events include:

  • New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Council Member Antonio Reynoso, who is chair of the Council Sanitation Committee, will celebrate ARD on Saturday, Nov. 14, with an event at the Cooper Park Houses in Brooklyn. The 1:00 p.m. event is being conducted along with the New York City Housing Authority and the City of New York Department of Sanitation, with participation by Keep America Beautiful and GrowNYC.

  • In celebration of ARD, Mathy Stanislaus, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Assistant Administrator for the Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, and EPA Region 4 Regional Administrator Heather McTeer Toney will announce preliminary results of the EPA’s analysis on job creation in the recycling sector as well as a discussion about the importance of recycling to the supply chain. This Nov. 16 event will occur at the Food Recovery Summit, a meeting bringing together industry leaders to discuss steps to achieve the announced goal to reduce food loss and waste by 50 percent by 2030.

  • The Mattress Recycling Council (MRC) along with representatives from Keep America Beautiful, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), City of Hartford’s Mayor Pedro Segara and other city and municipal leadership will celebrate the six-month progress of Connecticut’s Bye Bye Mattress Recycling Program and learn how MRC plans to expand the program’s collection services beyond the towns and cities currently participating on Thursday, Nov. 12, in Hartford, Connecticut.

  • America Recycles Day at SandBlast 2015 on Saturday, Nov. 14, in Holmes Beach, Florida, is a sand sculpture competition that helps raise funds to support Keep Manatee Beautiful’s programs and events.  This fun family event also celebrates ARD.

It’s not too late to register your ARD event at AmericaRecyclesDay.org. Local organizers can schedule events in their communities and gain access to valuable resources to plan, promote and host an ARD event.  Events can be scheduled any time during the fall, but should be held as close to Nov. 15 as possible.  Learn more about ARD at http://americarecyclesday.org where you can find a recycling event near you, register to host your own, or discover more information about how, when and where to recycle in your community.

America Recycles Day is made possible through the generous support of Amcor, American Chemistry Council, CyclePoint® from Source America®; Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies, Northrop Grumman Corporation and Pilot Corporation of America (Pilot Pen).

About Keep America Beautiful

At Keep America Beautiful, we want to ensure that beauty is our lasting signature. A leading national nonprofit, Keep America Beautiful inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. We envision a country where every community is a clean, green, and beautiful place to live. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful provides the expertise, programs and resources to help people end littering in America, increase recycling in America, and beautify America’s communities. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 600 community-based Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the support of corporate partners, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals. To learn how you can donate or take action, visit kab.org. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, or view us on YouTube.

Global Sustain Presents Sustainability Report 2014

Tue, 11/10/2015 - 2:53pm

Global Sustain proudly presents Global Sustain Sustainability Report 2014, in line with the company’s vision and engagement to sustainability and transparency. The company considers sustainability reporting an integral and crucial part of its business strategy, highly linked with People-Planet-Profit mentality.

This year’s Report is in English and designed by Global Sustain member Sympraxis Team. It was prepared taking into account the GRI-G4 (In accordance “Core”) and the principles of the United Nations Global Compact. The content οf the Report has been assured by the company TÜV Hellas (TÜV Nord).

As Michael Spanos, Managing Director of Global Sustain, quoted in his message: “This year’s report is a landmark as far as the reporting procedure is concerned since we follow international reporting guidelines according to the GRI-G4 standard. We recognise that global economic environment is fragile but we are determined to stay focused on ensuring a sustainable future for our business. We will continue to operate with a clear vision, adapt to new global demands and deliver our promises as a role model for new-generation enterprises globally”.

This year, as part of the process, Global Sustain conducted a thorough Materiality Assessment, prioritising topics based on the impact they have on the company and its stakeholders. The content of this Report was formed based on the following sustainability pillars: marketplace, human resources, society and environment.


Global Sustain turnover was increased by 31.89% (2014 vs. 2013), meeting the last year’s target. The company enhanced its global presence, funded two NGOs and increased the number of its members while it continued to act with integrity and transparency. According to a special client service satisfaction survey, 92% of Global Sustain members consider that the company enjoys a good level of credibility and effectiveness.

Human Resources

Human resources constitute the most dynamic element for Global Sustain growth, and this is why the firm systematically invests in finding, selecting, evaluating, retaining and developing its human capital. In 2014, the average training hours per employee was eight.


At the end of each fiscal year, Global Sustain donates an important percentage of its pre-tax profits to one or two non-profit projects carried out by Non-Governmental Organisations, with the aim of supporting the citizen sector. In 2014 it supported the NGOs: “Be Strong, a Public Benefit and Nonprofit Organisation Friends of Cancer” and “Life Line Hellas”. Moreover, Global Sustain and its ambassadors provided voluntary work in collaboration with NGOs and members of the network.


Global Sustain has created a comprehensive environmental policy in order to minimise any adverse impact on air, water and land by means of pollution prevention and energy and water conservation. Parts of this policy are: a) recycling, b) carbon offsetting c) reducing energy and water consumption and d) the use of FSC® certified paper.

For the full Global Sustain Sustainability Report 2014 press here.

Holy Land Principles Inc. Makes Final Appeal on Cisco

Tue, 11/10/2015 - 11:53am

An urgent call to action —and to conscience — is being made to Cisco investors in the remaining days before Cisco’s Shareholders’ Annual Meeting in San Jose, CA. on November 19, 2015.

The huge high tech company has key financial interests and a large workforce in Israel-Palestine. Cisco’s shareholders are being urged to vote for a Resolution calling on Cisco to sign and implement the Holy Land Principles— an 8-point corporate code of conduct for American companies doing business in Palestine-Israel.

The Holy Land Principles are modeled on the Mac Bride Principles, which have proved so effective in promoting fair employment by American companies doing business in Northern Ireland. To date, 116 American companies have signed the Mac Bride Principles.

Historic Opportunity

Fr. Sean Mc Manus is the man who launched both sets of Principles: the Mac Bride Principles in 1984 and the Holy Land Principles on International Human Rights Day, December 10, 2012. The Irish-born priest is the president of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus and Holy Land Principles, Inc.

Fr. Mc Manus said: “ This is a historic opportunity for Cisco’s investors to vote for the Holy Land Principles . It is the first time a Holy Land Principles resolution has been presented to Cisco and its shareholders. They now have the chance to send out a magnificent signal that they will be silent no longer about Cisco’s fair employment in the Holy Land. Before we launched the Holy Land Principles, the issue had never been raised before in the boardrooms of American companies doing business in Israel-Palestine— it was the elephant in the (board) room that nobody wanted to recognize. Since the issue had never been introduced before, then perhaps people had some sort of an excuse for ignoring it. But the Holy Land Principles now  make it impossible to ignore. The admonishment of Blessed Martin Luther King, Jr. forces us to confront this existential moment: ‘It may well be that we will have to repent in this generation. Not merely for the vitriolic words and the violent actions of the bad people, but for the appalling silence and indifference of the good people who sit around and say, ‘wait on time.’ ” 

Fr. Mc Manus explained: “ Just as was done with the Mac Bride Principles, people from the Right, Left and Center can be produced to give specious arguments against the Holy Land Principles. But we will not be dissuaded by those dreary old ploys, which companies have been attempting from time immemorial. The Holy Land Principles are here for the long haul: they will not disappear, they will not give up and they will not deflected.”

Kairos Moment: Moment of Truth

Fr. Mc Manus concluded: “ However, to emphasize the positive: The Holy Land Principles are not only a call to action but also a call to conscience —to the better angels of our nature. People of faith will recognize this as a Kairos moment: when God tugs at our hearts, calling on us to do the right thing —providing us with the precious opportunity to take prophetic action on behalf of social justice. And there is nothing more central to social justice than fair employment. Other investors will recognize our Resolution as the moment of truth, an ethical moment, to put their principles where their dollars are: the moment to support the Holy Land Principles, which are pro-Jewish, pro-Palestinian and pro-company.”

Barbara Flaherty, Executive Vice President of Holy Land Principles, added:“ One hundred and sixteen American companies have signed the Mac Bride Principles. Cisco and all the 545 companies doing business in Israel-Palestine should sign the Holy Land Principles. There should be no double-standard on fair employment by American companies overseas.”

[See text of Resolution (if necessary, copy and paste link into your browser):


Fr. Sean Mc Manus
Holy Land Principles,Inc.
P.O. BOX 15128
Capitol Hill
Washington, DC 20003-0849
Tel. 202-488-0107
Fax. 202-488-7537

National Grid Recognised for Climate Change Transparency

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 5:40pm

National Grid has been recognised as a FTSE 350 leader by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), for the quality of information it has provided about its C02 emissions.

The energy network company scored 99 out of a possible 100, when disclosing high quality carbon emissions and energy data through CDP’s climate change programme.

National Grid’s score, which was independently assessed against CDP’s well-respected scoring methodology, means it has been awarded a position on the UK FTSE 350 Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI) for the third year running. Only those organisations that score within the top 10% constitute the CDLI.

Stuart Bailey, head of sustainability and climate change at National Grid, said: “Being recognised as a FTSE 350 leader by the CDP is a great achievement for National Grid. It demonstrates our transparent approach and the in-depth detail we have provided about our carbon emissions.

“This is the third year running we have been awarded a position on CDLI and builds on the success we enjoyed last year. By benchmarking and tracking the amount of carbon dioxide we emit, we can not only monitor progress, but also set clear goals for the future.”

Paul Dickinson, executive chairman and co-founder of CDP added: “As the world looks beyond the Paris climate change negotiations and prepares for a low carbon future, reliable information about how companies are responding to the transition will be ever more valuable. For this reason we congratulate those businesses that have achieved a position on CDP’s Climate Disclosure Leadership Index.”

At the request of 822 investors who represent US $95 trillion in assets, thousands of companies submit annual climate change disclosures to CDP. Top scores indicate a high level of transparency in the disclosure of climate change-related information, providing investors with a level of comfort to assess corporate accountability and preparedness for changing market demands and emissions regulation.

For more information please visit our website, or our Connecting website, follow us on Twitter, watch us on YouTube, friend us on Facebook, find our photos on Instagram

Notes to Editors:

National Grid is one of the largest investor-owned energy companies in the world and was named Responsible Business of the Year 2014 by Business in the Community. This accolade acknowledges all of our efforts in getting involve with the things that really matter to us and to society. We own and manage the grids that connect people to the energy they need, from whatever the source.  In Britain and the north-eastern states of the US we run systems that deliver gas and electricity to millions of people, businesses and communities.

In Britain, we run the gas and electricity systems that our society is built on, delivering gas and electricity across the country.  In the North Eastern US, we connect more than seven million gas and electric customers to vital energy sources, essential for our modern lifestyles.

National Grid in the UK:

  • We own the high-voltage electricity transmission network in England and Wales, operating it across Great Britain

  • We own and operate the high pressure gas transmission system in Britain

  • Our gas distribution business delivers gas to 10.9 million homes and businesses

  • We also own a number of related businesses including LNG importation, land remediation and metering

  • National Grid manages the National Gas Emergency Service free phone line on behalf of the industry - 0800 111 999 (all calls are recorded and may be monitored).

  • Our portfolio of other businesses is mainly concerned with infrastructure provision and related services where we can exploit our core skills and assets to create value. These businesses operate in areas such as Metering, Grain LNG Import, Interconnectors and Property. National Grid Carbon Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of National Grid. It undertakes Carbon Capture Storage related activities on behalf of National Grid.

Find out more about the energy challenge and how National Grid is helping find solutions to some of the challenges we face at www.nationalgridconnecting.com

National Grid undertakes no obligation to update any of the information contained in this release, which speaks only as at the date of this release, unless required by law or regulation.

Benevity Acquires GrantStream, Offering Single, Integrated Solution that Delivers Greater Engagement and Impact

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 2:40pm

Benevity Inc., the leading global supplier of workplace giving and volunteer management software, announced the acquisition of GrantStream, a long-recognized leader in grants management software. The partnership provides a single solution that seamlessly integrates employee giving, volunteering and grantmaking for all Benevity and GrantStream clients, which include some of the most iconic companies in the world.

“In many companies, workplace giving and corporate grantmaking have operated in silos, which constrains the success of both,” said Bryan de Lottinville, CEO of Benevity. “By bringing together the best of Benevity and GrantStream, our clients will benefit from increased visibility, creativity and engagement that will come with horizontal program management. We are thrilled to integrate grantmaking into our leading workplace giving solution, which, along with the most passionate and responsive service in the industry, gives the market a more compelling way to connect with its people, customers and the broader community around corporate goodness.”

Benevity’s industry-leading software-as-a-solution (SaaS), Spark, now features the functionality of GrantStream’s leading grant management product, GrantRight – which will be available to clients under the product name of Grants by Benevity. Clients of both companies will now have access to a full suite of solutions and services to manage corporate responsibility efforts. Benevity will continue to make its platform and adaptors available for integration with other grant management applications.

“GrantStream and Benevity share a dedication to helping companies make a difference with thoughtful technology that delivers efficiency and scalability to charities and companies alike,” said Matthew Fawcett, President and Co-Founder of GrantStream. “After several years of working together to deliver on our shared purpose, we are thrilled to formally join forces to elevate the impact of corporate responsibility.”

The acquisition comes on the heels of Benevity’s announcement this summer of completing a $38 million CAD Series A round with JMI Equity to accelerate the innovation of its products and services. GrantStream is the first acquisition since the funding announcement.


About Benevity

Benevity, Inc., a certified B Corporation, is the global leader in online workplace giving, matching, volunteering and granting programs. Some of the world’s most iconic brands rely on Spark, Benevity’s award-winning SaaS solution, to power corporate responsibility programs that attract, retain and engage today’s diverse workforce by connecting people to the causes that matter to them. With more than two million users around the world, Benevity will process donations benefiting more than 100,000 global charities this year.

About GrantStream

Since 2000, GrantStream has provided cloud-based grant management solutions to “blue chip” corporations that are leaders in Community Investment and Corporate Social Responsibility. With technology that’s intuitive, dynamic, and easy-to-use administrators can review, make decisions and report on community investments and use an automated process to solicit feedback and evaluations regarding the impact of supported projects and events.

bobble® Expands Portfolio With Introduction of bobble INFUSE™ and bobble INSULATE™

Mon, 11/09/2015 - 11:32am

(Marketwired) - bobble®, the leader in sustainable and stylish drinking solutions, today announced the introduction of two new product lines, bobble INSULATE™ and bobble INFUSE™. Expanding the company's portfolio beyond water filtration and into insulated hydration and infusion, these new innovations offer consumers premium solutions for smart hydration, while continuing the company's mission to reduce the outrageous waste of single serve, disposable beverages.

bobble INSULATE™ 
bobble INSULATE is a high-grade, stainless steel drinking vessel that keeps beverages hot for up to 12 hours or cold for up to 24 hours. The new product line incorporates bobble's iconic shape and style, with the addition of double-wall vacuum insulation technology for excellent heat and cold retention. The BPA-free, dishwasher-safe bottle will not sweat and features a leak-proof seal. bobble INSULATE is available in a range of six colors (polar, pear, sangria, peacock, mint, and coral) and retails for $29.99 MSRP.

bobble INFUSE™ 
Designed by renowned industrial designer Karim Rashid, bobble INFUSE is a sleek, BPA-free water bottle that lets users customize their hydration experience. Featuring an innovative, modular cap system, bobble INFUSE provides users the ability to hydrate, filter, or infuse. The bottle's redesigned filter cage serves a dual function - it holds bobble's replaceable carbon filter but also enables infusion when the carbon filter is removed. Users simply add fruit or vegetables to the bottle and the filter cage prevents material from flowing back through the nozzle. bobble INFUSE is available in a range of six colors (poppy, sugar plum, citron, surf, peacock, and fern) and retails for $14.99 MSRP.

With bobble INFUSE, the company will also be launching a two-pack carbon replacement filter which retails for $6.99 MSRP. The filter removes the taste and odor of chlorine from municipal tap water, yielding a cleaner, crisper taste. Each filter is equivalent to 300 single serve water bottles.

"We believe people should be able to enjoy the beverages they love, hot or cold, while on the go, without compromising on style and generating unnecessary single serve waste," said Brian Berklich, Marketing Director of Seventh Generation Ventures. "bobble INSULATE and bobble INFUSE give our consumers even more options for smart choices that fit their lifestyle and make staying hydrated easy, stylish, and fun."

For more information or to purchase, visit www.waterbobble.com.

About bobble®
Founded in 2009, bobble® is a registered trademark of Seventh Generation Ventures, Inc. and based in Raleigh, North Carolina. The brand lives out its mission to reduce the outrageous waste caused by single serve, disposable beverages and beverage systems, with products that provide more sustainable and stylish alternatives. For more information on bobble, visit www.waterbobble.com.

About Seventh Generation 
Established in 1988, in Burlington, Vermont, Seventh Generation is one of the nation's leading brands of household and personal care products. The company lives its commitment to "caring today for seven generations of tomorrows," with products formulated to provide mindful solutions for the air, surfaces, fabrics, pets and people within your home -- and for the community and environment outside of it. A pioneer in corporate responsibility, Seventh Generation continually evaluates ways to reduce its environmental impact, increase performance and safety, and create a more sustainable supply chain. To learn more about Seventh Generation products and business practices, locate a retailer in your area, or review Seventh Generation's Corporate Consciousness Report, visit www.seventhgeneration.com.

Brown-Forman Recognized as a Global Leader for Corporate Action on Climate Change

Fri, 11/06/2015 - 4:42pm

Brown-Forman has been identified as a global leader for its actions and strategies in response to climate change and has been awarded a position on The Climate “A” List by CDP, an international not-for-profit that produces the list at the request of 822 investors who represent more than a third of the world’s invested capital.

Nearly 2,000 companies submit annual climate disclosures to CDP for independent assessment against its scoring methodology. Brown-Forman is one of 113 companies on the A List, placing it among the top 5% of the corporations participating in CDP’s climate change program. The ranking recognizes the company’s actions to reduce emissions and mitigate climate change in the past reporting year.

"We have been on a steady path of measuring and disclosing our emissions, setting a science based target and seeking to achieve meaningful reductions that will benefit our business and the environment, “ said Rob Frederick, VP and Director of Corporate Responsibility. “The A List ranking affirms that we are indeed heading in the right direction as a company committed to doing our part to address the pressing issue of climate change.”

A few weeks ago CDP also launched its Global Water Report where for the first time all companies who responded were ranked. This was Brown-Forman’s first time being evaluated and the company received a B, consistent with the industry’s average score. This level reflects the company’s efforts to measure impacts and reduce them, implement a policy and strategic framework to take action, and set targets on water issues.

“Given the importance of water quality and availability to beverage alcohol, one of the next frontiers for us is to focus on reducing water use and wastewater discharge. We’re off to a solid start but more work remains to achieve our targets and desired level of performance,” added Frederick.

For more than 145 years, Brown-Forman Corporation has enriched the experience of life by responsibly building fine quality beverage alcohol brands, including Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey, Jack Daniel’s & Cola, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Gentleman Jack, Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel, Finlandia, Southern Comfort, Korbel, el Jimador, Woodford Reserve, Canadian Mist, Herradura, New Mix, Sonoma-Cutrer, Early Times, and Chambord. Brown-Forman’s brands are supported by nearly 4,400 employees and sold in approximately 160 countries worldwide.

More information on Brown-Forman’s corporate responsibility commitment, priorities and performance can be found at www.brown-forman.com/responsibility.

Brown-Forman reminds you to please drink responsibly.

Norfolk Southern Rolls Out 'Eco' Friendly Locomotives In Chicago Rail Yards

Fri, 11/06/2015 - 4:42pm

Norfolk Southern joined local and state officials to dedicate a new fleet of environmentally friendly, rail yard locomotives for Chicago today at its 47th Street intermodal facility.

The engines are branded “Eco” locomotives for their operating efficiencies in reducing emissions and fuel consumption. More than $19 million in grant funding through the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program (CMAQ) made the $30 million public-private partnership to replace Norfolk Southern’s entire Chicago yard locomotive fleet possible. The new units feature a stylistic green paint scheme with an Illinois-shaped icon and the slogan "Working Together for a Cleaner State."

“These locomotives will be rolling billboards in Chicago for years to come of one of the finest examples of collaboration between public and private partners to think and act big on diesel emission reduction technology,” said Norfolk Southern Vice President Mechanical Don Graab. “The bottom line is cleaner air quality for Chicago residents. We thank the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, the Illinois Department of Transportation, and the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning for their partnership in helping us achieve this goal for our locomotive fleet.”

The 3,000-horsepower engines meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s strict Tier-3 emissions standards for locomotives. NS plans to put 15 of the locomotives to work at its five major Chicago rail yards by the end this year. The units are expected to prevent the release of 7.58 tons of particulate matter and 196 tons of nitrogen oxides pollutants annually while using less fuel compared with older switching locomotives. 

"In programming federal CMAQ dollars for the metropolitan Chicago region our agency uses a competitive review process to seek the most meritorious projects,” said Joseph C. Szabo, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning executive director. “These locomotives will reduce particulate matter emissions by 76 percent, significantly benefiting the region's air quality.”

“Illinois EPA is proud to have sponsored this Norfolk Southern locomotive repower project,” said Ryan McCreery, Illinois EPA deputy director. “The CMAQ funding provided through the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning and the match provided by Norfolk Southern is a great investment in Illinois’ air quality and will result in significant emission reductions for the Chicago region.”

Illinois Department of Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn said, “This type of innovation is a good example of how we can strengthen our state’s robust transportation network and improve our environment at the same time. The funding that made these locomotives possible will provide an enhanced quality of life for the region’s residents and make Illinois an even better place to live, work, and do business.” 

Norfolk Southern designed and built the locomotives at its Juniata, Pa., locomotive shops, using components from Electro-Motive Diesel, a division of Progress Rail Services, a Caterpillar company.

“More than 1,000 engineering and manufacturing employees working for Electro-Motive in LaGrange, Ill., designed and manufactured the engines, electrical lockers and various other components on this ECO locomotive,” said Progress President and CEO Billy Ainsworth. “This locomotive is a tribute to our dedicated employees and their commitment to sustainable solutions that improve the world where we live.”

Norfolk Southern is taking additional steps to reduce emissions in Chicago by pairing three of the "Eco" units with "slugs" - engineless locomotives equipped with traction motors that add emissions-free pulling power - and installing plug-in engine heating systems to eliminate locomotive idling in collaboration with U.S. EPA Region V.

Earlier this year, NS introduced 10 “Eco” locomotives at its Atlanta yard, and next year plans to add three more engines at its Macon and Rome yards in Georgia with additional CMAQ grants.

As the nation’s largest rail center, Chicago plays a vital role in Norfolk Southern’s rail network. NS operates more than 100 trains daily through the city, connecting Chicago and Illinois businesses and communities to markets across the nation and world. Across the state, Norfolk Southern employs 1,625 people and operates a network of 1,256 rail miles.

About Norfolk Southern
Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) is one of the nation’s premier transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway Company subsidiary operates approximately 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia, serves every major container port in the eastern United States, and provides efficient connections to other rail carriers. Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is a major transporter of coal, automotive, and industrial products.

Siemens Receives Top Marks In World’s Largest Climate-Protection Ranking

Fri, 11/06/2015 - 1:39pm

For the first time, Siemens has achieved the highest possible score in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), the world’s largest climate-protection survey. For the transparency of its reporting on the opportunities and risks associated with climate change, the company received 100 (2014: 99) out of 100 possible points. In addition, Siemens’ efforts to achieve energy efficiency and cut CO2 emissions enabled the company to reach Band A, the highest performance range. As a result, the company is also included in the Carbon Performance Leadership Index.

More than 5,000 companies worldwide, nearly 2,000 of which are publicly listed, provided data that was assessed against the CDP’S scoring methodology. A total of 113 companies made it onto the Climate A List, including – in addition to Siemens – firms such as Nestlé, BMW and Deutsche Post.

Susan Dreyer, a director at the Carbon Disclosure Project, stated, “We congratulate Siemens on reaching the CDP Climate A List and attaining the CPD’s highest climate score of 100 A. Siemens thus ranks among the four best DAX companies in terms of climate change disclosure.”

Roland Busch, member of the Managing Board of Siemens AG with special responsibility for sustainability, noted, “We’re very pleased about our outstanding rating in the CDP’s climate change report. As one of the world’s largest providers of resource-saving technologies, Siemens has a clear responsibility to lead by example. That’s why we’re committed to making our global operations carbon-neutral by 2030.” Busch concluded, “We’re thus sending a clear signal to the upcoming climate conference in Paris that the private sector must take action to address climate change.”

The international non-profit CDP holds the world’s most comprehensive database of corporate environmental information. This year, the CDP is issuing its Climate Change Report 2015 on behalf of 822 investors representing a total of €86 trillion in assets. The CDP is an independent organization that receives funding from a wide range of sponsors as well as through membership fees and within the framework of special projects and partnerships.


Siemens AG (Berlin and Munich) is a global technology powerhouse that has stood for engineering excellence, innovation, quality, reliability and internationality for more than 165 years. The company is active in more than 200 countries, focusing on the areas of electrification, automation and digitalization. One of the world’s largest producers of energy-efficient, resource-saving technologies, Siemens is No. 1 in offshore wind turbine construction, a leading supplier of gas and steam turbines for power generation, a major provider of power transmission solutions and a pioneer in infrastructure solutions as well as automation, drive and software solutions for industry. The company is also a leading provider of medical imaging equipment – such as computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging systems – and a leader in laboratory diagnostics as well as clinical IT. In fiscal 2014, which ended on September 30, 2014, Siemens generated revenue from continuing operations of €71.9 billion and net income of €5.5 billion. At the end of September 2014, the company had around 343,000 employees worldwide on a continuing basis. Further information is available on the Internet at http://www.siemens.com.

Lawyers for Donziger File Evidence Showing Chevron’s Star Witness Lied On the Stand During Company’s RICO Case

Thu, 11/05/2015 - 4:14pm

Lawyers representing U.S. attorney Steven Donziger today filed sworn testimony showing Chevron’s star witness Alberto Guerra admitted accepting large cash payments from the company and lying on the stand to protect the oil giant from paying a $9.5 billion environmental judgment owed to villagers in Ecuador’s rainforest.

“This is an extraordinary case, and these are extraordinary developments,” said the filing, made by Deepak Gupta, Donziger’s lead attorney.  “They not only bear on the legal issues in this appeal, they also exonerate Steven Donziger of the allegations of wrongdoing that Chevron has levied against him.”

The filing, available here, asserts that “new developments cast grave doubt on the truth of [Chevron’s] fraud allegations and confirm Chevron’s extensive pollution of the rainforest.

“These developments heighten the likelihood of inconsistent results and illustrate why this proceeding is both unnecessary and in contravention of basic norms of international comity,” said the motion, made to a three-judge panel hearing an appeal of Chevron’s civil racketeering case filed in the United States against Donziger, Ecuadorian lawyer Pablo Fajardo, and the 47 named plaintiffs who first pressed their class-action environmental claims against Chevron in 1993.

The Ecuadorian villagers, who suffer from high cancer rates and are often forced to consume contaminated water in areas where Chevron operated in Ecuador, won a stunning judgment against the American company in 2011 that has since been affirmed unanimously by Ecuador’s Supreme Court. (Here is a summary of the overwhelming evidence against Chevron in Ecuador.)

The filing by Gupta, made to the United States Court of Appeal for the Second Circuit, makes the following points:

  • Guerra admitted in a separate arbitral proceeding between Chevron and Ecuador’s government that he accepted roughly $2 million in cash and benefits from Chevron to testify for the company and that he only had $146 in his bank account when he struck his deal to get paid.

  • Guerra admitted in the arbitration that he lied on the witness stand in New York during the racketeering case about key elements of Chevron’s “bribe” allegation, which Donziger has categorically rejected.

  • Guerra admitted during the arbitration that the key corroborating evidence relied on by Judge Lewis A. Kaplan to credit his testimony – shipping records from an Ecuadorian airline – had nothing to do with the Chevron pollution case, contrary to his testimony in Kaplan’s court.

  • Guerra also admitted that he repeatedly “exaggerated” his knowledge of the case to obtain more money from Chevron and that he knew Chevron would not pay unless he came up with a story to implicate the trial judge in a bribery scheme.

  • Guerra also conceded in his arbitral testimony that there is no credible evidence corroborating his allegation that the lawyers for the Ecuadorians ghostwrote the trial court judgment.

Chevron brought its RICO case in the U.S. the same month that an Ecuador trial court found the company guilty of deliberately dumping billions of gallons of toxic oil waste into rivers and streams in Ecuador relied on by thousands of local inhabitants for their drinking water.  Virtually all of the Ecuadorian plaintiffs rejected the jurisdiction of U.S. judge Lewis A. Kaplan, who refused to seat a jury and failed to disclose he had investments in Chevron when he was presiding over the case.

Kaplan also refused to hear the scientific evidence of Chevron’s environmental contamination relied on by the courts in Ecuador to find the company liable, prompting Donziger to call the proceeding a “show trial”.   “Chevron made a mockery of justice in Kaplan’s courtroom, and they did it with the active cooperation of Kaplan himself,” Donziger said at the time.  (For background on the numerous problems with the RICO case, see here.)

In ruling in favor of Chevron in the racketeering case, Kaplan had credited Guerra’s testimony that the plaintiffs bribed the trial judge based on information now proven to be false and that Guerra admits he lied about, according to the latest filing.

Luis Yanza, a longtime leader of the affected communities in Ecuador, blasted the oil company for its abusive litigation tactics and its refusal to comply with the court order that it clean up its contamination.  Chevron has used at least 60 law firms and 2,000 lawyers to try to beat back the villagers, who are currently enforcing the Ecuadorian judgment against Chevron’s assets in Canada and Brazil.

“Let us be clear: Chevron’s attacks against Steven Donziger, Pablo Fajardo and other advocates of the very communities it poisoned in Ecuador must cease immediately,” said Yanza, who won the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize.   “We consider an attack against any one of our advocates to be an attack against all, including the thousands of innocent people suffering death and grave harm because of Chevron’s reckless misconduct and criminal fraud in Ecuador.” 

Kaplan already was reversed once in the racketeering case when he took the unprecedented stop of trying – from his Manhattan courtroom -- to block enforcement of the Ecuador judgment in any country in the world.

Kaplan’s racketeering decision in favor of Chevron has little practical effect, as the villagers are enforcing their judgment in countries where Kaplan has no jurisdiction, said Yanza.  The Canada Supreme Court recently ruled in a unanimous opinion that the villagers could attempt to seize Chevron’s assets in that country, which are estimated to have $15 billion in value.  

After the transcripts of Guerra’s arbitral testimony first became available publicly last week, Donziger issued the following statement:

“The disclosure of Guerra’s corrupt witness testimony is just the latest of many examples of how Chevron has engaged in gross misconduct to sabotage legal proceedings in Ecuador and the United States to evade accountability for the deliberate dumping of billions of gallons of toxic waste.  Chevron has now been caught yet again in presenting false evidence designed to delay its court-mandated environmental clean-up in Ecuador of oil contamination that has decimated indigenous groups and caused a humanitarian catastrophe. The latest testimony from Guerra demonstrates once and for all that Chevron’s so-called racketeering case has fallen apart.   Guerra was the linchpin of Chevron’s RICO case and he now stands as an admitted liar and shocking symbol of how Chevron’s management has lost its way on the Ecuador issue. 

Guerra’s false testimony is one of many documented frauds Chevron has committed in Ecuador and elsewhere. These include the use of a sampling and analysis plan designed to hide contamination from the court, the secret videotaping of a sitting judge to try to entrap him in a fake bribery scheme, and attempts by Chevron operatives to bribe the trial judge who authored the opinion against the company.  Chevron and its lawyers also paid $2 million to Guerra for his testimony in violation of federal law and ethical rules. The company enlisted the U.S. government under false pretenses to provide Guerra and his family with political asylum.  Two Chevron lawyers – Randy Mastro and Avi Weitzman -- coached Guerra for 53 consecutive days as part of a desperate effort to fictionalize a story and frame the company’s adversaries with false evidence.  

Given the latest critical developments relating to Guerra’s testimony, we reiterate our call to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals to dismiss Judge Kaplan’s “findings” of fact and legal rulings which are based largely on demonstrably false or distorted evidence already rejected unanimously by two different appellate courts in Chevron’s preferred forum of Ecuador.  Judge Kaplan’s unprecedented decision and Chevron’s illegal tactics are an affront to Ecuador’s sovereignty and reflect poorly on the American federal judiciary in the eyes of the world. “

Jitasa, a B-Corporation Serving Nonprofits, Adds Congressman Richard A. Gephardt To Board of Directors

Thu, 11/05/2015 - 4:14pm

Today, Jitasa, a Boise, Idaho certified B-Corporation specializing in accounting services for nonprofits, is proud to announce a new addition to their Board of Directors, Congressman Richard A. Gephardt.  Congressman Gephardt brings a wealth of experience concerning labor, nonprofits, social issues and healthcare issues to enhance their ability to serve the nonprofit sector.

Jon Osterburg, Jitasa’s Director of Business Development, spoke to their mission stating, “At Jitasa, we believe in making the world a better place, that’s why we only work with nonprofit organizations. Our newest product JOIN, www.joinsoftware.us, offers software built specifically for unions, combining membership management with Jitasa’s accounting expertise. JOIN helps a union track their members, finances, and more.  With a lifelong record of service to the labor movement, Congressman Gephardt is a significant addition to further our understanding of the organized labor movement.”

Congressman Richard A. Gephardt served 28 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, 16 years of which he was elected to the role of House Democratic Leader.  He has run for President of the United States twice, in 1988 and 2004.  Congressman Gephardt is widely recognized as one of the nation's most respected politicians for much of the last two decades. He is an eloquent voice for fairness, justice and opportunity for every American.  

Mr. Gephardt retired from the U.S. Congress in 2005 to found Gephardt Group, a privately held labor/employee relations consulting and government affairs firm.  He is also Honorary Chairman of The Gephardt Institute for Public Service at Washington University in St. Louis and has served on the corporate boards of US Steel, Ford Motor Company, Centene Corporation, Spirit Aerosystems and CenturyLink Corporation.  Jitasa is proud to be added to this list. http://jitasa.is/about/board-of-directors

Alexander Toeldte, the Chairman of the Board of Jitasa stated, “We are honored to have Dick Gephardt join our Board, bring his passion for serving our communities to Jitasa and help us accelerate our growth serving unions and other not-for-profit organizations.”  Additionally, Jitasa Founder and CEO, Jeff Russell, said “It is great to see someone of Dick Gephardt’s stature believe in us and in our mission.  When we began in 2008 we knew that we could make a positive difference in how nonprofits operate, their efficiency, and the impact they have on our society.  Congressman Gephardt and I share this passion and hope for all nonprofits.”

Headquartered in beautiful Boise, Idaho, Jitasa (www.jitasa.is) is the largest national accounting and bookkeeping service provider dedicated solely to the nonprofit sector. Their name means “The Spirit of Serving Others”, and they are passionate about broadening the impact of the nonprofit sector. They offer bookkeeping and accounting solutions that cater to every nonprofit, regardless of size.  With their newest product, they hope to extend their mission to include organized labor. Built specifically for unions, JOIN combines their accounting expertise with a powerful membership management and dues processing technology. 

The First and the Most Advanced Corporate Social Responsibility Companies Join Forces

Thu, 11/05/2015 - 1:13pm

Good Done Great announced today that they have acquired AmeriGives. The acquisition positions Good Done Great to become the leading provider of technology enabled corporate social responsibility services. 

The acquisition rounds out a pivotal year for Good Done Great who recently released a cutting edge CSR technology suite that offers the industry’s only fully integrated solution for workplace giving, corporate matching & grant making, and employee volunteer programs. Good Done Great also increased their talent base – adding 20 new employees, and expanded their professional services offering to include domestic and international disbursements of corporate and employee donations to charities, program management support and expanded training programs.

“Good Done great has always been, and continues to be, committed to inspiring revolutionary philanthropy,” said Earl Bridges, President and co-founder of Good Done Great. “The highly experienced AmeriGives team will help us help move the needle forward that much faster.” 

Providing services since 1978, AmeriGives is the longest tenured corporate philanthropy service provider in the industry. They bring with them to Good Done Great 32 clients and a staff of 15.

"Joining Good Done Great is an ideal next step for AmeriGives and our clients," said Gary Carr, President and CEO of AmeriGives. "The GDG 2.0 software is industry-leading, and their commitment to charitable giving innovation is unparalleled. We are excited."

About Good Done Great

Good Done Great revolutionizes the way corporations and individuals give back to the communities and causes they care about. Through strategic consulting supported by our integrated software solutions, the Good Done Great team helps Fortune 500 and other companies maximize their corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs. Launched in 2009 and headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina (with offices in Tacoma, Washington and Denver, Colorado), Good Done Great was certified as a B Corps in 2012. More than 1.4 million employees currently rely on GDG’s innovative tools and more than 65,000 non-profits benefit from Good Done Great’s broad philanthropic reach.

About AmeriGives

AmeriGives has been supporting corporate giving programs for over 37 years. Headquartered in Northern Virginia, with operations in Stuart, FL, AmeriGives clients represent nearly 1 million employees who in turn give $28 million annually to more than 15,000 charities.

EVgo and Whole Foods Markets Partner in California to Reduce Carbon Through EV Fast Charging!

Thu, 11/05/2015 - 1:13pm

Whole Foods Markets customers want to reduce their carbon footprint and they are taking advantage of electric vehicle (EV) fast charging at NRG EVgo chargers in the stores’ parking lots to ensure they get the emission-free miles they need while they shop.

A detailed analysis of 10 EVgo Freedom Station® sites at Whole Foods Market locations in the Bay Area shows a 191% increase in EV charging over the last year. EV drivers also show a significant preference for DC fast charging, 12 to 1 when comparing the number of charging sessions to the Level 2 charging also available at those locations.  In September 2015 alone there were nearly 6,900 DC fast charge sessions at those stations.

The Whole Foods Market Fremont location is the busiest DC fast charger in the national EVgo Network. In September of this year alone it provided 1,452 DC fast charge sessions. On average that amounts to 45 sessions a day at that Freedom Station® location. Most EV drivers can get a nearly full charge in less than 30 minutes with DC fast charging meaning that station is in use dependably and almost continuously! 

“This kind of explosive growth shows that the EVgo strategy of putting the highest quality fast chargers in the highest demand locations is setting the standard for electric vehicle charging,” said Arun Banskota, President of EVgo.

There are now a total of 13 Bay Area Whole Foods Market EVgo Freedom Station® locations which offer both the CHAdeMO and CCS DC charging standards as well as Level 2 charging. Since they began operation they have had a dramatic impact on the environment.

  • 8,770,895 miles driven on electric vehicles powered at these stations

  • 360,942 gallons of gasoline usage avoided

  • 3,945,274 lbs. of CO2 equivalent emissions avoided–That is nearly 2,000 tons! 

“We brought in EVgo chargers because our customers care deeply for the planet and demand the cutting edge in environmental technology,” said Tristam Coffin, energy and environment coordinator for Whole Foods Market Northern California. “It’s gratifying to see that the stations are being used. It’s good for us, good for the planet, and great that our customers can get a fast charge and be on their way.”

In Redwood City, at the Whole Foods Market Freedom Station® the number of fast charge sessions jumped from 21 in March to 393 in September which is an increase of 1700%. “A dramatic increase like this shows not only the growth in the popularity of the network but a rapid embrace of fast charging by the EV driving community in Redwood City,” said Terry O’Day EVgo Vice President for the West Region. “California is the national leader in EV use and EVgo is excited to be the national leader in public DC fast charging.  

About EVgo

EVgo SM leads America’s electric vehicle revolution.  Our mission: Build the nation’s largest EV charging network while improving the planet and boosting the economy.  At home, work, and on the road, we put the right chargers in the right places. Together we unite the EV movement for all, making it unstoppable.  Service plans offered by EVgo can provide EV owners a home or workplace charger and use of EVgo’s Freedom Station® sites and other public charging stations. EVgo provides access to hundreds of public charging sites across 26 cities including San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Sacramento.  To find out more, or to join the EVgo network, visit www.nrgevgo.com. Connect with EVgo on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @nrgevgo.

How to Build a Purpose-driven Company, Part Two: Prove It

Thu, 11/05/2015 - 10:13am

Oliver Russell has released the second of a three-part white paper series which challenges purpose-driven companies to take the next step in their work and validate their efforts.

Titled “Prove It,” the white paper is now available for download on the firm’s website. This installment guides readers past the building and positioning efforts outlined in part one, and demonstrates a proper, purposeful validation process that lends credence to your work.

“If your view of a good company is one that considers the welfare of the environment, its community, and employees, then you’re already on the right track,” said Russ Stoddard, founder and CEO of Oliver Russell. “But to get your proper ‘street cred,’ you’ll need to go deeper by enacting policies and procedures that support these values across your operations.” 

To meet today’s customers’ high expectations—especially Millennials—you need to measure and validate your firm’s performance. The reward is a return on investment in the form of enhanced cost savings, and customer and employee loyalty.

Part two of the white paper series discusses the tools available that can help identify metrics considered to be important, as well as some options for third-party verification.  

“Prove It” also delves into ways to charter (or re-charter) your firm beyond the established forms of Limited Liability Corporations (LLCs), C Corporations, and S Corporations. These include Public Benefit Corporation status and the more intensive step of becoming a certified B Corp. Oliver Russell is among just 1,500 companies in the world to be recognized as a certified B Corp.

“It’s not easy,” said Stoddard. “We know, we’ve been there. And since 1991 we’ve helped a lot of other brands get there.”

Download “Prove It” now, and look for the final installment, “Share It,” to be published later in 2015.

Oliver Russell, a Boise-based brand-marketing firm founded in 1991, builds brands for purpose-driven companies. The company specializes in natural food and beverages, technology, health, and startups. It is a certified B Corporation and a legal public benefit corporation, part of a growing movement of companies that use the power of business to help solve social and environmental issues. Since the company’s founding, Oliver Russell has donated more than $1.8 million in cash and resources via social impact grants to causes and social enterprises. More information about these Social Impact Grants can be found here.

BJ’s Charitable Foundation Distributes 70 Grants to Support Children and Families Throughout its 15-State Footprint

Wed, 11/04/2015 - 1:03pm

BJ’s Charitable Foundation announced today the donation of 70 grants to nonprofits that will impact the lives of more than two million residents across its 15-state footprint. As part of its quarterly grant cycle, the Foundation contributed $249,900 to benefit the underprivileged in the areas of education and hunger prevention.

“We are very proud to partner with these 70 organizations that support children and families in need that live in the communities surrounding BJ’s Clubs,” said Jessica Newman, Executive Director of the BJ’s Charitable Foundation. “Together, we can feed the people who need it most while also funding essential educational services.”

Some funding examples include:

  • Harry Chapin Food Bank of Southwest Florida (Fort Myers, FL) $5,000 to help with fuel and maintenance costs for its warehouse truck. Providing food for 30,000 individuals each month, the Food Bank partners with 150+ agencies for food distribution including church food pantries, soup kitchens, emergency shelters, disaster relief agencies and more.

  • The Open Door/Cape Ann Food Pantry Inc. (Gloucester, MA) - $7,500 to purchase both food and a cooler for its Making the Healthy Choice Easy Program. The goal of the program is to provide those in need with good food and engage entire households to promote healthy eating and wellness. This is done by removing the transportation barrier by bringing healthy food directly to where people live and learn and through nutrition education and weekly outreach.

  • Children's Aid and Family Services, Inc. (Paramus, NJ) - $5,000 to purchase nutritious formula for low-income families served through the Baby Basics Program. The program serves low-income families with children ages newborn through two years by providing free nutritional formula for one year and diapers for two years. A range of other services is available to families including counseling, parental education, a safety-net support system and a wide referral base.

  • Korean American Family Services (Flushing, NY) - $5,000 to purchase literacy and STEM learning curricular materials, books, art supplies, and physical activity supplies for the Hodori "Little Tiger” Program. This after-school program provides students not only with academic assistance, but also with social and emotional support that will enrich their developmental growth through carefully designed after-school and summer-school programs. 

  • Junior Achievement of South Central PA (York, PA) - $2,500 to supply 25 classrooms with program kits in the York City and Harrisburg City In-Class Programs. The kits allow students (grades 9-12) to learn and experience business fundamentals as well as the art and hard work of entrepreneurship as they operate a student-led company.

  • Urban Alliance Foundation, Inc. (Washington, D.C.) - $2,000 to fund student wages for the Baltimore High School Internship Program. The nonprofit aims to empower under-resourced youth to aspire, work and succeed through paid internships, formal training, and mentorship. Over 17,000 youth have been served in D.C., Baltimore, Chicago and Northern Virginia to date with a 100% on-time high school graduation rate from high school.

To learn about our other incredible grant recipients, please visit http://www.bjs.com/about/news/content/item1,574.shtml