by Julie Thibodeaux
The North Texas green community filled the Dallas Arbortum's Rosine Hall to honor local eco-heroes at the Memnosyne Institute’s fifth annual Green Source DFW Sustainable Leadership Awards on November 4th. Dallas-based organic gardening expert and radio host Howard Garrett received the Lifetime Achievement award and provided the keynote address. Green Source DFW Director Wendel Withrow served as emcee for the evening, which he dubbed a celebration more than a fundraiser.
Green Source DFW was created by the Memnosyne Institute in 2011 with the mission of advancing the environmental movement and green living in North Texas. The main focus of Green Source DFW is GreenSourceDFW.org, a online publication that features original reporting on environmental issues and green trends in North Texas. It’s also a resource where users can find green businesses, organizations, job listings, events and farmers’ markets in North Texas. Green Source DFW hosts two major annual events; the Run for the Environment 5K in May and the Sustainable Leadership Awards in November.
Half Price Books CEO and president Sharon Anderson Wright accepted the award for Large Business. The Dallas-based company pioneered the practice of recycling books throughout its stores following the company’s founding in 1972 by her mother Pat Anderson and Pat’s partner Ken Gjemre. She also founded the new eco-friendly venture Rooster Home & Hardware, formerly Gecko Hardware, which she acquired in September.
Dan Lepinski, of the North Texas Renewable Energy Group, received the award for Nonprofit Professional for powering local events with his self-designed solar shuttle and educating people around the state about the benefits of solar power.
Susan Pollard accepted the Small Nonprofit award on behalf of Texas Honeybee Guild for its longtime and often creative advocacy for bees and pollinators, such as its notorious public “swarms” in bee costumes.
Heather Rinaldi, head wrangler at Texas Worm Ranch, received the Small Business award for her innovative eco-friendly gardening practices. She's also convinced many a gardener to test these methods through her workshops, outreach and social media.
Anna Clark was honored as this year’s For Profit professional. Clark, the founder of EarthPeople consulting firm and author of Green, American Style, has contributed articles on sustainability to numerous local and national publications.
Dallas activists Chris and Dick Guldi received the Volunteer award for their tireless work in the trenches of local environmental activism. The couple has a reputation for doggedly attending hearings, disseminating information and lobbying politicians on behalf of the most pressing environmental issues in North Texas, in conjunction with the Dallas Sierra Club, Citizens Change Lobby, Public Citizen, North Texas Renewable Energy Group, Downwinders At Risk and Environmental Defense Fund.
John Spicer accepted the Corporate Trailblazer award on behalf Breeze Energy, a Dallas-based company founded in 2012 by Spicer and fellow Texan Walter Hornaday. The two engineering school graduates formed the first and only electric provider in Texas to provide 100 percent wind energy to all of its customers.
In addition, Withrow honored Green Source DFW creator Phillip Shinoda, who was unable to attend, and Memnosyne Institute cofounders Mary Ann Thompson-Frenk and Joshua Frenk. They each received the Founders Award for their innovative vision to bring the North Texas green community together via Green Source DFW.
For more stories like this read Natural Awakenings Dallas-Ft Worth Metroplex magazine at NADallas.com