About SBN

For more information, please contact Sandy Tribendis, Office Assistant.

Meet the team.

SBN leadership consists of individuals at all levels of the organization who tirelessly contribute their talents to achieve the shared vision of a prosperous, local economy that values the earth and its inhabitants.

Staff

 

Jamie Gauthier, Executive Director

Jamie Gauthier is the Executive Director of the Sustainable Business Network, a 400+ member business organization working to build a just, green and thriving economy in the Greater Philadelphia region. SBN accomplishes this by educating and growing a broad base of local, independent businesses and educating policy makers and the public. Since 2001, the organization has offered support for local businesses in the Philadelphia region, helping them to become not only financially sound, but good contributors to their communities and the environment.


Prior to joining SBN, Jamie held the position of Program Officer with Philadelphia Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), supporting community based organizations to develop and implement a variety of community and development initiatives designed to bring new life to communities. This work provided Jamie with an in-depth view of how important small, locally-owned businesses are as sources of goods, services, jobs, and vitality for neighborhoods as well as the region more broadly.


As with her professional work, Jamie’s volunteer work has been dedicated towards the empowerment of individuals and the betterment of local communities. She currently serves as President of Garden Court Community Association, on the Board of Directors of University City District, and as Advisory Board Member for American Communities Trust. Jamie holds a Master’s degree in City Planning from the University of Pennsylvania, and an undergraduate degree in Business Administration from Temple University. Prior to her career in community and economic development, she worked as an Accountant in the for-profit sector. Jamie is a resident of West Philadelphia, and is mother to two sons, Xavier 11, and Nathaniel, 7.
 

 
 

Wendy Metzgar, Member Services Manager

Wendy has joined SBN as our Member Services Manager. In this role, Wendy will hold responsibility for leading our membership department, including delivering high-quality customer service to SBN’s members, attracting new members, managing event planning and implementation, and guiding our organization’s communication function.

Wendy brings 17 years of membership organization experience to SBN, having served in lead roles in membership organizations spanning several industries. Her broad experience has involved overseeing customer service, designing and executing marketing and communications campaigns, leading event planning and market research activities, and more. Wendy holds a Bachelor’s in English from Dickinson College, a certificate in Executive Management from Notre Dame University, and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Organizational Dynamics from the University of Pennsylvania.

Wendy is looking forward to working closely with the SBN community to engage members, while also ensuring that each member’s experience with our organization is one that is appreciated and remembered. Contact Wendy
 

 

Saleem Chapman, Policy and Advocacy Manager

Saleem Chapman is SBN's Policy and Advocacy Manager. In this role, Saleem is leading SBN’s policy and advocacy function, including advancing the SBN Good Economy Challenge by engaging members in the campaign, mobilizing and building support amongst SBN’s organizational allies, and working with policy-makers to implement our recommended policies. Saleem is also working to keep SBN engaged in other policy discussions pertinent to building a sustainable economy in the region.

Saleem brings significant experience in government relations and public policy and most recently worked as Director of Strategy and Policy for the Clean Air Council (CAC). In this position, Saleem worked to increase CAC’s influence on policy, and was instrumental in establishing the organization's environmental justice program, aimed at reducing disproportionate exposure to environmental health risk in low-income and communities of color. Saleem holds a Bachelor’s in Biomedical Engineering from Drexel University, as well as a Bachelor’s in Political Science and a Master's in Public Administration, both from Penn State University.

Saleem is deeply committed to local economy issues, environmental policy, and social justice, and looks forward to employing this commitment towards the benefit of SBN’s members and mission. Contact Saleem
 

 

Anna Shipp, Project Manager, GSI Partners

Anna joined SBN in January of 2013 as the Project Manager of the GSI Partners, a business-informed initiative working to advance the green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) industry and innovation in the region, as well as the local businesses whose services and products relate to GSI.

Anna holds a Masters of Environmental Studies from the University of Pennsylvania, where her academic work focused on urban sustainability and sustainable stormwater management. She was a 2012 US Forest Service Sustainability Science Fellow, the 2013 recipient of the Dr. Frederick Scatena Award for Outstanding Research in Urban Forestry, and a 2015 Fellow of the Environmental Leadership Program.

In the decade prior to joining SBN, Anna provided program coordination and project management for several non-profits in Philadelphia, each around the theme of making this city a better place - environmentally, economically, and socially.

Anna thoroughly enjoys being outdoors, going for long bike rides, gardening, cooking, and working on her South Philadelphia rowhome. Contact Anna

 

            
 

 

 

Mike Daly, Membership Associate

Mike promotes members and their businesses through social media, newsletters, and various forms of communication, along with developing solid marketing strategies to keep the Sustainable Business Network relevant and interesting to potential members. In 2014 became responsible for executing the SBN event calendar.

Before joining the SBN team, Mike's career in media started with event planning and photography. Mike has a B.A. in Mass Communications from York College, PA.

Mike is a foodie, social media aficionado, and loves exploring his South Philly neighborhood. When he’s not at at SBN combining his passion for communication with his passion for causes in the community, Mike can often be found behind his camera. Contact Mike

 
   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sandy Tribendis, Office Assistant

Sandy joined SBN as Office Assistant after working as a volunteer for the 2015 Sustainaball gala.

Sandy’s educational & professional background started in the Parks & Recreation Management field with degrees from Penn State University and California State University. She gained diverse business and recreation management experience working in municipal government for the City of Palo Alto and the City of Foster City, California.

Returning to her roots in Pennsylvania, Sandy worked as a conference coordinator for Resource Dynamics Inc, a conference & training management company. As part of the RDI team, Sandy assisted the coordination & implementation of the initial roll out of the USGBC LEED trainings around the country from 2000-2005.

Following the work with RDI, while raising a daughter, Sandy worked part-time as Business Manager for Saraswati River Yoga and On-line Communications, Inc.

Her favorite volunteer experience included working along side her daughter to restore homes in the Philadelphia Area through HomeWorks Program.

Sandy resides in Bucks County where she enjoys practicing meditation and yoga. In the nice weather, she can be found exploring the walking and bike trails along the Delaware River in PA and NJ. Contact Sandy

 

Board of Directors

 

Lynne Andersson (Fox School of Business, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA)

Lynne is an Associate Professor of Business, Society & Ethics in the Fox School of Business and Management. She received her Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior/Social Issues in Management from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, her M.S. in Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and her B.S. in Biostatistics also from UNC. Prior to pursuing her doctorate, Lynne worked as a statistical programmer and information systems consultant in both research and corporate settings in the southeastern U.S.

Lynne has developed and taught a wide variety of courses at the undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral levels in the areas of management, organizational behavior and theory, business and society, corporate sustainability, and business ethics. No matter the course or the student, she feels an obligation to challenge students to think critically about the institution of business around which they are building their lives.

Apprising students of the potential for meaningful work and careers through sustainable enterprise has been an overarching mission of Lynne’s work as an educator, and the sustainable business community here in Philly has been a fantastic vehicle. Lynne has worked in the niche of sustainable business as an academic in Philadelphia since 1995.

       

Leslie Benoliel (Entrepreneur Works, Philadelphia, PA)

Treasurer

Leslie H. Benoliel is Executive Director of Entrepreneur Works, a non-profit microenterprise development organization that provides comprehensive business training, counseling and microloans to entrepreneurs in low income, minority and other underserved communities throughout the Greater Philadelphia region. Combining over 30 years banking and community development experience, Leslie has built Entrepreneur Works into an effective, nationally-recognized microfinance and development organization.

Her key accomplishments include: having served more than 3,000 entrepreneurs and small business owners, raising over $15 million in operating and loan capital, advancing over 360 microloans totaling $1 million and successfully implementing several national microenterprise initiatives bringing new corporate resources to invest in the region’s entrepreneurial community: Hewlett Packard Microenterprise Project, Covad Broadband Entrepreneur Program, Prudential’s Young Entrepreneur Program, and, most recently, Starbucks Create Jobs for USA initiative.

In addition to EW, Leslie currently serves on the boards of the Pennsylvania Microenterprise Coalition and the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia. In January 2013, she was appointed by Mayor of Philadelphia to the Mayor’s Office of Community Empowerment and Opportunity. Ms. Benoliel has a BA from the University of Vermont and an MBA in finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and two teenage sons.

 

Colleen Bracken (Bracken Leadership, Philadelphia, PA)

Past Chair

Colleen is the founder and principal of Bracken Leadership (BL), a management consulting firm that helps its clients leap forward in the areas of Leadership, Organizational Change, Team Effectiveness, Communication, and Creativity. BL’s processes help organizations operate in new and different ways that produce robust business, thriving communities, and a healthy environment.

BL does its best work with clients who share their values of conscious, sustainable business practices and creating good for the whole of our society and our planet.
Over the span of her career, Colleen has worked with a wide variety of organizations including GlaxoSmithKline, The United Way, Sungard, Fair Food, ThomsonReuters, Johnson & Johnson, University of Pennsylvania, Comcast, Federal EPA, Centocor, and many more.

Colleen co-established and co-leads the Executive Coaching & Feedback Program for the full time MBA students at the Wharton School of Business, where she also teaches coaching seminars. Her nonprofit board experience includes past-president of Philadelphia’s chapter of the International Coach Federation, a worldwide association for professional coaches, and went on to be elected Global Committee Chair, leading decision making on membership and community issues for 20,000 member coaches around the world.

She holds the International Coach Federation PCC credential and a Master’s degree in Organizational Dynamics from the University of Pennsylvania.
 

   

Ken Curry (ISS Management, LLC, Blue Bell, PA)

Ken was with Cardone Industries for 28 years and resigned in July of 2013 to pursue a new career focusing on Stormwater Management for large Philadelphia commercial properties. Cardone is one of the largest private employers in Philadelphia. During his time at Cardone, Ken was responsible for Buildings, Infrastructure, Construction, Project Management, Energy, and Building & equipment /machinery maintenance around the globe. As the world’s largest auto parts remanufacturer Ken’s responsibilities extended outside of the U.S. to Canada, Mexico, and Europe. Ken decidedly left Cardone as Director of Corporate Facilities in 2013. In 2009 when PWD changed from meter based Stormwater billing to parcel based, Ken actively pursued a resolution to the very substantial increase in Stormwater charges that Cardone was incurring in Philadelphia. Initially, as a representative of a large manufacturer in Philadelphia, Ken had to address City Council with the concern of such an increase and the impact it can have on Philadelphia businesses. Knowing that the fees would not go away, and understanding the environmental impact that Stormwater Runoff has on our waterways, Ken and his team worked with PWD and with ISS Management, LLC, and successfully obtained a grant to install Philadelphia’s largest Stormwater Management system at Cardone’s largest Philadelphia site of 90 acres. At near completion of the Cardone Stormwater project, Ken was approached by the owner of ISS Management to join their team. It was not a hard decision for Ken since he has a desire to help business owners reduce their stormwater fees and simultaneously help the environment.


Ken was born and raised in Philadelphia and as a child, swam in Philadelphia waterways and therefore naturally has a desire to protect the waterways and as leader in a Philadelphia business that felt the impact of Stormwater charges, Ken as the desire to help other businesses achieve the same success as Cardone.

Ken is now the CEO of ISS Management, a Stormwater design-¬‐build-¬‐maintenance company focusing on Stormwater Management. ISS Management has just completed the installation of a Stormwater Management system on a 35 acre commercial property, the second largest installation in Philadelphia, and was recently awarded $8,000,000 from PWD to install Stormwater Management on 14 more Philadelphia commercial properties over the next year.

 

 

Clifford David (Conservation Economics, Lower Gwynedd, PA)

Clifford David has built his career as an innovator, combining non-profit mission with for-profit financial incentives to transform land management through conservation. His distinguished and groundbreaking work as a senior leader of a regional land trust and other nonprofit and for-profit organizations has advanced the cause of natural resource conservation and historic building preservation.
Mr. David is recognized as an energetic and savvy senior leader with a successful 20+ year track record. He has developed breakthrough revenue generating concepts while utilizing collaboration with best-in-class partners to take each project to a positive revenue execution.

Mr. David’s repeated successes in adaptive reuse of underperforming real estate assets combined with his experience turning around struggling organizations create a unique set of skills to lead Conservation Economics. By connecting and collaborating with external partners, Mr. David has demonstrated the ability to further organizational objectives and generate enthusiasm for a common, achievable mission.

As an entrepreneurial strategist, Mr. David is gifted at identifying emerging opportunities not seen by others and systematically converting them into successful organizational initiatives and projects. Mr. David serves on the Board of Directors in leadership roles for several for-profit and nonprofit organizations. Mr. David holds a BA in Psychology, BS in Botany, and an MS in Organization and Management.

 

Amy Failing (Community Energy Inc, Radnor, PA)

Amy is a sustainability marketing professional, leading Marketing Operations for renewable energy supply and development company, Community Energy, Inc. Amy has grown in her career as an energetic and passionate leader, working to transform both our local communities and greater planet through consumer engagement in sustainable products and services. Amy has strong expertise in communications, brand management, business development, and strategic operations. Prior to working in renewable energy, Amy sought experience in the health & wellness and food industries, even taking on an international assignment with a large, multinational company in Dublin, Ireland, which gave her a global perspective on climate impact as a result of business operations.

Amy’s fresh perspective as a young professional has given her the ability to bring creative strategy and insight to all roles she takes on, using her broad sustainability knowledge as a keen driving force behind addressing all challenges. She has a deep commitment to the City of Philadelphia and strives to grow in her opportunities to serve the greater community through meaningful work.

 

Heather G. Hanowitz (PIDC, Philadelphia, PA)

Heather Hanowitz joined the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) in July 2015 with eight years of small business lending and international equipment leasing experience. As Vice President, Commercial Business Market Manager, Heather is responsible for developing and maintaining PIDC’s relationships with small and midsize commercial businesses in Philadelphia. Her portfolio consists of business and economic development loans ranging from $50,000 to $2 million.

From 2010 to 2015, Heather served as the Director of Business Lending for FINANTA, a Philadelphia based non-profit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) offering small business and credit-building microloan products to urban entrepreneurs. While at FINANTA, she conducted all business loan assessment, underwriting, and closings, and provided technical assistance and consumer credit counseling to clients on an ongoing basis.

Prior to FINANTA, Heather was a Value Analyst for De Lage Landen, an equipment lease financing agency owned by Rabobank of The Netherlands. While working at their US headquarters in Wayne, PA, Heather conducted risk-based pricing valuation and cash flow modeling for multi-million dollar leasing portfolios. She also supported the Mergers & Acquisitions team during confidential pricing negotiations and served as interim Controller for the company’s IT division for over 3 months.

Heather holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mathematics and Spanish from Bryn Mawr College in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.

 


Lee Huang (Econsult Solutions, Philadelphia, PA)

Lee Huang is Senior Vice President and Principal of Econsult Solutions. With an undergraduate degree from the Wharton School and a master’s degree from the Fels School of Government of the University of Pennsylvania, Lee provides an excellent perspective for public, private, and non-profit clients. Prior to joining Econsult Solutions, Lee was a director at Econsult Corporation, and was been responsible for leading projects examining commercial corridors, affordable housing, neighborhood change, transportation financing, MWBE procurement, real estate development, economic development, tax policy, economic and fiscal impact, transit-oriented development, financial modeling, tax increment financing, waterfront development, discrimination in lending practices, higher education, workforce development, technology, historic preservation, and recreational amenities.

From 1995 to 2005, Lee was employed at The Enterprise Center, an entrepreneurial center in West Philadelphia where he acquired extensive experience in day to day management as well as strategic decision making. He most recently served as Executive Vice President, where he was responsible for all programs and operations, and helped manage fifty staff and interns and a $1.2 million budget. He was also Founder of The Enterprise Center’s YES (Youth + Entrepreneurship = Success) Program and Director of Cities Beyond, The Enterprise Center’s consulting department.

In 2006, Lee earned his Masters of Public Administration at the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government, where he also received certificates in Public Finance and in Economic Development and Growth. Lee received his Bachelor of Science degree in Economics in 1995 from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, with a dual concentration in Accounting and Management.

Lee lives with his wife Amy and their daughter Jada and son Aaron in West Philadelphia, and is an active member and elder of Woodland Presbyterian Church. He currently serves on the board of the Spruce Hill Community Association.  

 

Paul Marcus (Marcus Reinvestment Strategies, Bordentown, NJ)

Paul has been involved in a variety of roles in affordable housing community and business development since 1995 with expertise in organizational development, real estate development and financing.

Since 2011 he has operated Marcus Reinvestment Strategies, a consulting firm focused on financing and technical assistance on community development real estate activities. Clients include governments, lenders and non-profits looking to redevelop underutilized properties.

In 2010, he co-founded Philly Fair Trade Roasters, a Philadelphia-based coffee roasting company with a focus on sustainable practices and roasting high quality, Fairtrade, Organic coffee. The company continues to expand its social relationships, supporting environmental improvements in Nicaragua and local non-profits focused on Fairtrade.
He formerly was a Vice President in Commercial Real Estate at Citizens Bank financing community development activities in Pennsylvania, Delaware and Southern New Jersey.


Prior to working for Citizens Bank he was a Program Officer at the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) where he provided grants, financing and technical assistance to non-profits including advising non-profits on affordable for-sale housing, program development of a neighborhood based home-improvement program, and organizational development of a non-profit coalition focused on commercial revitalization. He also worked for the Friends Rehabilitation Program, a Quaker-based non-profit affordable housing provider, where he oversaw development of affordable multi-family and single-family for-sale housing.

 

Steve Masters (JustLaws, Philadelphia, PA)

Chair

Attorney Steve Masters is the chair of SBN’s recently formed Policy Committee.Steve spent twelve years at the Philadelphia City Council where he drafted many ground breaking and innovative bills, including laws combating predatory lending and gun violence and laws promoting sustainability, neighborhood quality of life and worker rights. Steve also designed and staffed City Council’s city-wide and local nuisance business task forces where community leaders worked hand in hand with elected officials and City and State law enforcement agencies to eliminate vexing quality of life issues like nuisance Stop-N-Gos and night clubs.While at City Council Steve pioneered the use of community benefits agreements with take-out beer licenses, turning many nuisance beer sellers into responsible businesses. His efforts were recognized by State Representative Cherelle Parker, who awarded Steve a Dedicated Community Service Award in 2007.In October 2012 Steve launched JustLaws, an innovative government relations and community empowerment law firm. JustLaws navigates the political and legal landscape of Philadelphia to deliver significant legislative victories for non-profits, unions, businesses and concerned citizens at the Philadelphia City Council, help local small businesses and MBEs/WBEs win major contract bids with federal, state and local agencies and empower community groups to shape local economic development and win strong community benefits agreements.Since launching JustLaws, Steve has scored major victories for his clients at City Council and before the Zoning Board of Adjustment.Steve also has over thirty years experience leading successful grassroots legislative advocacy campaigns on the local, state and national levels in the areas of gun violence prevention and promoting U.S. leadership to resolve the Israeli/Palestinian conflict. Steve was featured in the documentary "PASSIONATE VOICES: American Jews and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict" which aired on public television and was one of a handful of American Jews who traveled to Geneva Switzerland to witness the public commitment ceremony for Israelis and Palestinian architects of the Geneva initiative on December 1, 2003. Steve is a long time board member of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Jewish Labor Committee.

 


Demond Mullen (Streetside BBQ, Philadelphia, PA)

Secretery

Demond is the owner of Streetside BBQ, a classic barbecue catering company in the Philadelphia area. He is also a founding member of the Waynesboro Area Learning Tree and continues to hold a position on their advisory board. Mr. Mullen has been in a leadership position for more than twelve years spanning the chemical, manufacturing, medical and utility industries. He has held key positions at Dollar Tree Stores, DuPont, Quest Diagnostics and Philadelphia Gas Works in the areas of project management, supply chain management, customer service and information technology.


As a part of his career, he has also worked as a consultant with Vanguard and Merck aswell as Mercusol, an international shipping company based out of Manuas, Brazil. Through the years, his leadership roles has given Mr. Mullen the opportunity to acquire invaluable business experience specifically in project management, logistics, procurement, inventory, import/export, quality assurance, and gathering business requirements. Mr. Mullen has a Bachelor of Science from the University of Maryland College Park and a Masters in Business Administration from the Vilanova School of Business. Additionally, he is a black belt in Lean Six Sigma. He currently resides in Philadelphia with his wife and daughter.

 

Paul Spiegel (Practical Energy Solutions, West Chester, PA)

Paul is President of Practical Energy Solutions of West Chester, PA, which he co-founded in March of 2006. The company works with businesses, schools, and municipalities to help the people that manage and occupy the buildings assess the energy consumption, and implement programs and strategies to reduce their energy costs and their environmental footprint. PES is a certified “founding” B-Corporation, and is a member of the Sustainable Business Network of Philadelphia.


Paul has nearly 30 years of experience in engineering, construction, and energy services, is a licensed professional engineer, a LEED AP, and has a degree in Economics from the University of Delaware. He is an adjunct Civil Engineering Professor at Temple University, and serves on the Westtown School Sustainability committee, the board of the Smart Energy Initiative, and on the Programs Committee for the DVGBC. He is also a senior member of the Association of Energy Engineers.

 

Daniel Stern (R2L, Philadelphia, PA)

Daniel Stern is the chef and owner of R2L, the acclaimed modern-American restaurant that is set on the 37th floor of Two Liberty Place in Center City Philadelphia. After earning his Bachelor's Degree in Asian Studies and Religious Studies at Connecticut College, Daniel moved to New York to pursue a master's degree at Teachers College, Columbia University. While taking a break from school and exploring the world of teaching, Daniel, with the support of family and friends, realized that he had actually found his true passion way back when he was a teenager, peeling apples in his mother's bakery. So he set out to learn his craft from the best teachers he could find, including Rocco DiSpirito, Gray Kunz, Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Daniel Boulud. In the summer of 2002, he was hired as the Executive Chef of Le Bec Fin and led the kitchen to the reclaiming of its coveted 5th Mobil Star. In 2005, Daniel ventured on his own with the nationally and internationally recognized Gayle, and then went on to create other renowned dining experiences with Rae and with MidAtlantic. R2L, which opened in January of 2010, is now his home, and it is there that he continues to explore his fascination with food and to push the boundaries of modern American dining.

 

Anne Rouse Sudduth (Boyer Sudduth Consulting, Philadelphia, PA)

Vice Chair

Anne currently serves on the sustainability committee at Springside Chestnut Hill Academy, a U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School, and leads the school’s zero waste initiative. In this capacity, Anne collaborates across faculty and administrative departments as well as with student eco clubs to develop and implement initiatives that eliminate waste through changes in organizational behavior, divert waste from landfills by increasing recycling and composting and inspire student leadership through education and training. Recent efforts include collaboration with the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability to train students in all school divisions to be official city “Waste Watchers.” These student volunteers now assist with proper disposal at new “zero hero” waste sorting stations at school-wide outdoor events.


Anne previously was National Director of Community Involvement at Deloitte, the global
accounting and consulting firm. At Deloitte she developed the firm’s award winning U.S.
community involvement programs that included workplace volunteerism, charitable giving, and the firm’s United Way campaign. While participating in Deloitte’s ‘Personal Pursuits’ sabbatical program, Anne founded the Seacoast Women’s Giving Circle (SWGC) in southern New Hampshire, a volunteer organization whose members contribute annually to a pooled fund and participate in focused volunteer service projects.


Prior to joining Deloitte, Anne was Senior VP for Education and Workforce Development at the Partnership for New York City, the city’s leading business and civic organization. She graduated from Brown University and lives in Philadelphia with her husband, Matthew, and two daughters, Ella and Claire.

 

Charlie Szoradi (Independence LED, Wayne, PA)

Charlie Szoradi is the Founder and Chairman of Independence LED Lighting, LLC a leading U.S. Manufacturer of high-efficiency LED tubes and fixtures that save 50% or more in energy costs over the less efficient fluorescent tubes that dominate commercial lighting. Mr. Szoradi brings multiple decades of hands on experience to the culture of sustainability and cost-savings for property design and property retrofits. He focuses on ‘high performance’ architecture, and in the early 90s he wrote his Master of Architecture thesis on sustainable design, entitled ‘Eco-Humanism’.

Mr. Szoradi is a LEED AP (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design - Accredited Professional), a Certified Building Performance Institute (BPI) Energy Auditor, and he has taken an eco-leadership role at the regional and national level. In 2009, Mr. Szoradi was elected to the Board of the Sustainable Business Network and selected as a member of the Green Economy Task Force, with direct participation on the Capitol Hill Delegation. The next year, he moved the Company’s LED tube manufacturing from China to Boyertown, Pennsylvania. Mr. Szoradi led the team, wrote the primary claims, and developed the key figures for the July 21st, 2011 Patent Filing for: LIGHT ENGINE DEVICE WITH DIRECT TO LINEAR SYSTEM DRIVER. The Patent file has 20 different claims and over 30 figures. In that same year, the Company won the Green Business of the Year Award by the Main Line Chamber of Commerce. Independence LED has since earned the trust of facility managers and engineers across the market with installations ranging from Fortune 100 clients to the U.S. Military.

The Company has also provided the lights for the largest LED tube retrofit in U.S. history with over 2 miles (38 football fields) of installed energy saving tubes. Mr. Szoradi graduated from the University of Virginia and went on to earn his Master of Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania. From the cover profile of Inventors Digest Magazine to a speaker at the Made in America State of the Region panel, Mr. Szoradi has dedicated his career to innovation in clean energy technology.

 

Phil Walker (W2 Group, Jenkintown, PA)

In a career that includes being a member of the 1978 NBA World Champion Washington Bullets team, multi-unit franchise business ownership, corporate executive for various Fortune 500 companies, founding three business start-ups and serving as a board member for several non-profits, Phil Walker has significant and diverse business experience across multiple end markets and geographic regions.

Mr. Walker is an accomplished senior-level business development executive and intrapreneur with a 25+ year record of achievement and demonstrated success driving multi-million dollar revenue growth while providing visionary leadership in highly competitive markets. He is a results-driven professional with proven ability and exceptional leadership skills in strategic business development, accelerated market share growth and enhanced client loyalty while concurrently planning and implementing critical business expansion. He has an exceptional track record of delivering revenue growth, cost containment, building strategic alliances with a focus on sustainable technologies and implementing operating efficiencies that deliver strong financial results. He also has a strong commitment to environmental principles that support corporate and community sustainability.

As Managing Principal at W2 Group, a boutique business and market development consulting firm that provides customized solutions for the formulation and implementation of business strategies, Mr. Walker is responsible for providing strategic direction, building the corporate portfolio and managing partner relations. W2 Group's focus is engaging with companies that provide sustainable products/technologies and view sustainability as a way to drive revenue. He leads a consulting team that helps businesses meet the challenge of tapping into this emerging consumer mindset and create new market opportunities based on sustainability-inspired innovations.

His prior career in the private sector includes such companies as Xerox, Steelcase and Right Management, where responsibilities ranged from sales management to providing strategic leadership for large multi-million dollar business units. Mr. Walker has also served on various non-profit boards such as Philadelphia Futures, Millersville University Foundation, National Adoption Center and Triskeles.

Mr. Walker currently resides with his son, Christian, in the Mount Airy section of Philadelphia.

 

Omar Woodard (GreenLight Fund Philadelphia, Philadelphia)

 

Recognized as a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum in Switzerland, and selected as one of 55 "Connectors & Keepers" by LEADERSHIP Philadelphia, Omar T. Woodard is an experienced leader with a decade of expertise in public affairs, philanthropy, and corporate governance and management. He is a sought-after public speaker across the nation, with high-level experience in political campaigns as a fundraiser, field director, and policy director. A North Philadelphia native and resident, Omar is an adjunct professor in the Fox School of Business at Temple University.

Currently Omar is the Executive Director of GreenLight Fund Philadelphia, which envisions a growing national network of local GreenLight Funds that find and spread nonprofit solutions that can make the greatest, most needed impact in cities and regions around the country.Most recently, Omar was policy director for a mayoral campaign in Philadelphia; prior to that he was a principal at Venture Philanthropy Partners (VPP), one of the nation's earliest philanthropic investment firms where he co-managed a $20M portfolio to achieve social impact. Prior to VPP, he was a healthcare and higher education management consultant, and an associate director of business development at the Advisory Board Company in Washington DC.

For two years, he was a federally registered lobbyist for the Whitaker Group, a premier consulting firm focused on increasing US-African trade & investment. At The George Washington University, he worked in the Office of Corporate & Foundation Relations, and the Office of the Senior Vice President. He served as Deputy Regional Field Director during the general election for the 2008 Obama for America presidential campaign, and started his career on Capitol Hill as a congressional intern/aide.

He is a board member/advisor to numerous organizations, including PHL Diversity – a division of the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors’ Bureau – the African American Chamber of Commerce of PA, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, the Maternity Care Coalition, and the Elliott School of International Affairs Board of Advisors. At 24, he was the youngest-ever person elected to the George Washington University Board of Trustees. The Board of City Trusts of Philadelphia appointed him to the Board of Managers of Girard College, and served as President of the Girard College Foundation.

Omar is a Fellow with the Association of Black Foundation Executives, a Fellow with the Center for Progressive Leadership, and he received the Toyota Presidential Fellowship from the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress. Harvard Business School awarded him with the Hansjoerg Wyss Award for Social Enterprise, and he also served as a Head Judge of the Harvard Business School New Venture Competition. The Obama for America 2012 presidential campaign appointed Omar as a committee member/delegate for the Democratic National Convention representing the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Omar received a master's degree in public administration with a focus on nonprofit management and governance, and a bachelor's degree in international economics & public policy, both from the George Washington University where he was a Presidential Administrative Fellow and Student Body President. He holds a certificate in nonprofit governance from Harvard Business School. Omar graduated from Girard College, a grade 1-12 co-ed boarding school in North Philadelphia for children from low-income families.
 

 

Founder

   

Judy Wicks (White Dog Cafe, Philadelphia, PA) - Founder

Judy Wicks founded the White Dog Café on the first floor of her Philadelphia row house in 1983. As the restaurant grew, so did her notion that the strength of her business relied upon the quality of its locally grown ingredients. Envisioning how strengthening relationships among independent, community-rooted enterprises could inspire profound social change, she founded the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia in 2001, and co-founded the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies that same year.

Judy also founded Fair Food, dedicated to building a local food system in the Philadelphia region. In 2009, she sold the White Dog through a unique agreement that preserves local, independent ownership and maintains sustainable business practices, including buying from local farmers, composting and using renewable energy. In March of 2013, Judy released her memoir, Good Morning, Beautiful Business.

 
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