Details from the First Summit of Sustainability Awards

by Cindy Pantea

Summit of Sustainability Awards 2012

Founders and sponsors gift made of recyclable glass by Weisenbach Recycled Products. (Photo by Bruce S. Ford)

Founding members: City of Akron, County of Summit, Keep Akron Beautiful, the Greater Akron Chamber and the Summit Akron Solid Waste Management Authority, were excited for the first Summit of Sustainability Awards (SOSA) program held in The University of Akron Student Union ballroom on Thursday, October 25. It was a sold out event!

This awards program revealed the best sustainable business practices going on within our community and showcased the following winners of the 2012 Summit of Sustainability Awards in the three categories:

  1. Companies with over 250 employees – Bridgestone Americas
  2. Companies with 249 employees or less: Visual Marking Systems, Sustainable Green Printing Partnership
  3. Nonprofit: Akron Zoological Park
Summit of Sustainability Award Winner Bridgestone Americas

Bridgestone Americas accept Summit of Sustainability Award (made of recycled material) in the category: companies with more than 250 employees. (Photo by Bruce S. Ford.)

Winners received a beautiful plaque made out of recyclable materials by Weisenbach Recycled Products and had their pictures taken with Mayor Plusquellic and County of Summit Executive Russell Pry. They also had videos of their sustainability projects, beautifully produced by Steve Felix, shown at the luncheon. Keep checking back with us as we will share the winners’ videos and more.

Kudos to all the other applicants for their sustainable efforts as well: GOJO Industries, Inc., Boy Scouts of America, Akron Children’s Hospital, The Goodwill Industries of Akron Ohio, Inc., Habitat for Humanity of Summit County, Hampton Woods Condominium, Inc., Hattie Larlham, Laurel Lake Retirement Community, Our Lady of the Elms School, Akron Area YMCA, Barrington Carpet & Flooring Design, Hazel Tree Interiors, Involta, Jaco Fridge Recycling LLC, Main Street Gourmet, New Leaf Home Design, OEConnection, Red’s Gourmet Buffet Express / New Adventures Early Learning Center, Samuel Steel Pickling Company, SGS Tool Company, The Totally Cooked Hospitality Group, West Point Market and Ms. Julie’s Kitchen.

Inspiring Words from Elaine Gallagher Adams

SOSA keynote speaker Elaine Gallagher Adams

Summit of Sustainability Awards luncheon keynote speaker Elaine Gallagher Adams. (Photo by Bruce S. Ford.)

At the SOSA luncheon, architect, author and speaker, Elaine Gallagher Adams of Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), enthusiastically shared how making just small changes and using out-of-the-box thinking can decrease water waste and increase energy savings for home and business.

For example, being aware of and fixing existing faucet or pipe leaks saves on the water bill and retrofitting an existing structure can provide significant energy savings. In fact, the remanufacturing of the Empire State Building’s existing windows was one case study she used. 

Also, think big! Businesses especially shouldn’t strive for just 17% savings…go for  more!

Read more about the speech by Elaine Gallagher Adams and the event in an article by Beacon Journal staff writer, Bob Downing, at

Thank You from the Founders

Thank you to sponsors:

  • Sustainable Champions – METRO RTA and Sterling Jewelers Inc.
  • Conservation Leaders – Dominion Foundation, FirstEnergy Foundation, The University of Akron, River Valley Paper Company, Smart Business Network Inc., Hasenstab Architects, Inc. and Greenstar Recycling
  • Resource Guardian – Affinity Consultants, Inc.
  • Media Sponsors – The Summit-91.3FM, Smart Business magazine and Lockett Media

Also, thank you to the expert panels of judges: Dr. Nicholas Zingale, Faculty Member, Cleveland State University, Dr. Stacy Willet, Faculty Member, The University of Akron, Sam Rubens, Administrator, Akron Regional Air Quality Management District, Robert Marshall, AIA, Principal, Robert Marshall Architecture and Michele Kilroy, LEED AP, Executive Director of the Northeast Ohio Chapter of the USGBC.

And…thank you to the applicants!

The Summit of Sustainability Awards is a part of Greenprint for Akron which is facilitated by Keep Akron Beautiful.


Keep Akron Beautiful - Greenprint for Akron

Helen Dauka, Keep Akron Beautiful Intern, and Jacqui Flaherty, Keep Akron Beautiful Program Manager, sitting at the Keep Akron Beautiful/Greenprint for Akron booth at the SOSA luncheon. Greenprint for Akron is a program facilitated by Keep Akron Beautiful. (Photo by Bruce S. Ford.)





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  1. Pingback: Video: The Summit of Sustainability Awards 2012 Keynote Speaker | Keep Akron Beautiful

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