– Blog written by Findorff Project Manager Ben Austin, LEED® AP BD+C, WELL AP, Fitwel Ambassador
At Findorff, we are passionate about sustainability. As such, we eagerly celebrated Earth Day on April 22. In Madison and Milwaukee, we had a beautiful day to enjoy the change of seasons while volunteering for various events supporting the environment and local communities. This year we were lucky enough to share our efforts with some of our clients including American Family Insurance, Scientific Protein Labs (SPL), and Waunakee Community School District in the Madison Area. In Milwaukee, we took part in the annual Milwaukee Riverkeeper Spring Clean-up.
While Earth Day is a great time to refocus our attention on the natural assets surrounding us, it is also important that this focus extends beyond this one day each year. My role as Project Manager at Findorff has been deeply intertwined with my personal passion for environmental sustainability. As a LEED® Accredited Professional, I have had the privilege to be involved on many projects guided by sustainable building practices. Such undertakings allowed me to witness the positive impact a sustainable approach can have on facilities and its occupants. With that in mind, I enrolled in Edgewood College’s Social Innovation and Sustainability Leadership Master’s Program in July 2016. With a goal of “wellbeing for all, forever,” this program looks to develop leaders who can approach sustainability broadly and can create solutions through a social, economic, and ecological lens.
As part of Findorff’s ongoing innovative initiatives, a dedicated group of sustainability leaders launched Findorff Footprint. This in-house resource tracks the implementation of various sustainability goals within the walls of our own buildings, on the projects we work on, and throughout the communities we serve. Additionally, the Findorff Footprint team regularly works with the U.S. Green Building Council, vendors, subcontractors, and other organizations to stay current on third-party certification processes and the latest sustainability trends. For example, Findorff is currently working towards our first WELL Certified project. This performance-based standard is the first to focus primarily on features of the built environment that impact occupant health and wellbeing.
Over the next year, Findorff will also take part in Sustain Dane’s MPower Business Champions Program for 2017. This cohort-based program is focused around designing, implementing, measuring, and communicating five distinct sustainability goals within an organization. The cohort-based model allows for organizations to connect, learn, and share their journeys along the way. We are looking forward to working with our clients and each other to build a greater focus on sustainability for the future. Stay tuned for more updates throughout the year, specifically related to our initiatives as part of the MPower program. By partnering with each other, we can celebrate Earth Day, every day!