SGA Design Group: Combining Sustainable Design with Sustainable Practices

SGA Design Group: Combining Sustainable Design with Sustainable Practices

TULSA, Okla., November 14, 2016 /3BL Media/ – SGA Design Group (SGA) is a dynamic, Tulsa-based architectural firm that is combining sustainable design with sustainable practices.  Over the past two decades, SGA has grown into an architectural leader with over 80 employees, 25 licensed architects, 2 offices, and a nation-wide network of experts.  SGA provides architectural services for major brands all across the country.  They work primarily with retail and medical office clients to develop smart prototypes and plans for multi-project rollouts.  SGA is built on relationships, and they really excel at partnering with clients to help them achieve their goals.

Sustainable Design
Per Chris Goble, President and CEO, “We believe in being leaders in the field of sustainable design, and we’re proud to know our passion for this commitment shows in our work.”

SGA believes that being good stewards of the environment is a core responsibility in their practice of architecture. They consider it their responsibility to create appropriate and quantifiable design solutions that meet their clients’ unique needs. In order to achieve this objective, SGA makes it a priority to understand the constantly changing relationship between the built and natural environments. They also collaborate with industry experts and leading organizations such as USGBC®, the Green Building Initiative®, and the EPA’s Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR® program.  They want to make sure they are meeting or exceeding all leading industry standards.

SGA has also been a pioneer in providing LEED® consulting and project administration services for large national chains. They have completed more than 35 LEED certified projects and received 5 Designed to Earn the ENERGY STAR Certificates of Achievement. They are able to achieve this because they put a priority on hiring highly-skilled and qualified professionals. “We are proud to employ numerous LEED® Accredited and Green Globes Professionals™” said Daryl Bray, COO.

Sustainable Practices
Not only does SGA deliver industry-leading sustainable design to their clients, but they also run their business in a very sustainable manner.  They scored very high in a recent CurrentState™ sustainability audit that was conducted for their headquarters in Tulsa, OK.  “Their sustainability performance was strong across the board, however two categories really stood out.  These were ‘Society and Human Rights’ and ‘Waste and Recycling’”, says Anthony Gilbreath, Principal at Caelus Consulting“SGA has implemented an impressive waste recycling program.  The program has allowed them to reduce the volume of waste sent to landfills by approximately 50% over the course of 8 years.  Additionally, they are very active in their community, donating to several local charities as well as participating in volunteer activities.”

Under the leadership of SGA’s Director of Sustainability, Kim Limbaugh, they are also fulfilling another important role – as sustainability advocates with their property manager. Many companies that lease space feel there is little their organization can do to become more sustainable. SGA shows by example how tenants can be sustainability influencers, educators and partners with their landlords.

Being an architectural firm, SGA is uniquely qualified to provide sustainable design consultation. In 2008 when they relocated to a different floor within their building, this is exactly what they did.  Beyond designing a sustainable workplace for their employees, they also provided design and retrofitting advice for the building owners.

New lighting systems were being installed within the tenant space, and the restrooms for the floor were also being upgraded.  SGA provide the property manager with a full building water analysis along with high-efficiency fixture recommendations, and this information helped drive their decision to retrofit all restrooms within the building.  SGA’s lighting system design included LED’s as well as multilevel and motion sensor lighting controls, and this design has become the standard for other remodel projects within the 15 story building, resulting in reduced energy costs for the property manager.

Additionally, SGA hired a local company for their internal recycling services.  One conversation led to another with the property manager, and soon the vendor was providing recycling services for the entire building.  SGA is also working with the property manager to help identify opportunities to incentivize recycling by the tenants within the building.

Beginning in the fall of 2015, SGA participated in the ‘Sustainable Tulsa Scor3card Program’.  The program was designed to provide local businesses with high-level advice about sustainable business practices.  Energy, water and waste benchmarking were included in the list of required practices in order to be recognized as completing the program.  SGA used this as an opportunity to approach their landlord about benchmarking for not only their floor, but also for the entire building. According to Ms. Limbaugh, “We offered to help our property manager with benchmarking, using the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager tool.  Through that initial conversation, we discovered that they are extremely interested in pursuing this, and we hope to begin assisting them in the upcoming year”.

Conclusion
In conclusion, SGA has shown itself to be a rising sustainability leader in both their profession as well as their community.  SGA offers sustainable design solutions for their clients as well as conducting their business in a very sustainable way.  Sustainable design impacts the environment and the environmental and financial performance of clients for years to come.  Running a business in a sustainable manner does the same thing.  Finally, as a tenant, SGA shows the positive role companies leasing space can and should play.

About SGA Design Group
SGA is an established architectural leader focusing on volume programs for retail and medical office. Our extensive experience includes architectural prototype development, multi-project rollout, entitlement, permitting, sustainable design, and construction services.

Smiles for the People Charting a Greener Path with CurrentState

Smiles for the People Charting a Greener Path with CurrentState

Smiles for the People is a small company with a BIG vision.  Smiles for the People is a for-purpose business. The purpose of the profit they earn is to sustain their development activities and expand their movement of doing what they can to promote better oral healthcare for those who may not be able to afford it.

THE CLIENT’S CHALLENGE
Smiles for the People’s mission is to sell the high quality and environmentally responsible dental supplies, while also helping improve the oral health of people who can’t access or afford the dentist.

To achieve that mission, they are working to develop long-term relationships with reputable organizations that share their vision of a world where no person lives without access to quality and affordable dental care.  They also donate the equivalent of one toothbrush for every toothbrush they sell.

Their goal is to work with a variety of partners who provide dental care to those in need, advocating for increased access to dental care in their communities, training dentists and other care providers, and teaching people about the importance of proper dental hygiene.

Instead of simply giving away toothbrushes to their partners, they ask them to tell them exactly what they need. They might ask for the funds to open a new clinic, buy supplies, run a training program, or facilitate community outreach and education. In short, a new way of doing business.

Smiles for the People launched on February 26th 2013 with national sales.  

DIAGNOSTIC FINDINGS
Smiles for the People completed the Small Business version of CurrentState and chose to complete two of the three modules - Green IT and Business. Facilities was not yet applicable given their current size.

The CurrentState Findings Report identified dozens of specific Quick Win opportunities as well as dozens of longer-term recommendations.  Because their organization is young, the CurrentState Findings Report can act as a blueprint for their company as their operations grow.

“As a new startup with an eye towards environmental responsibility, Smiles for the People will benefit in a variety of ways from the CurrentState Small Business Sustainability Audit.” Joe Brennan, Founder - Smiles for the People.

Green IT
The CurrentState Audit found the current IT practices to be quite good.  The Findings Report recommended translating the current practices into formal policies and procedures.  The report also identified several purchasing requirements for IT equipment that could be added that would increase sustainability performance in this area.

“Smiles for the People makes very good use of information technology.  They have taken some great steps to keep needless paper out of their administrative functions as these are being developed.  If they apply the recommendations contained in their Findings Report, they will be very well-positioned for the future.” Anthony Gilbreath, Caelus Principal.

Business
Smiles for the People’s business model is quite innovative and unique.  The CurrentState Audit revealed that most all of business practices they are using are consistent with best practices for a start-up.  However, their Findings Report recommends formalizing their current good practices into formal policies and procedures.  In addition, the report created a blueprint for establishing a carbon management program, creating a comprehensive set of purchasing requirements, and for setting up a green office - all steps that will be essential for green growth in the future.

”It is tremendously helpful to a growing company to have a plan for green growth.  A good plan will ensure that things are done correctly from the beginning.  It also eliminates the need to ‘reinvent the wheel’ at a time when your focus should be on growth.” Anthony Gilbreath, Caelus Principal. 

CONCLUSION
In conclusion, Smiles for the People is a new type of business - a for-purpose business.  This type of business put purpose before profits.  Sustainable operations is not only compatible with this business model - it is essential.  Smiles for the People has demonstrated through their actions and their words their commitment to not only the people that they serve, but also to the environment. 

CurrentState has provided Smiles for the People feedback on their current practices as well as a blueprint they can follow as they grow.

“I would highly recommend CurrentState for any start-up that wants to be green from day one.

CurrentState has provided us with a roadmap of what we need to do to in order to grow sustainably.”  Joe Brennan, Founder - Smiles for the People.

CONTACT INFORMATION
Joe Brennan
Founder - Smiles for the People
Twitter: @smiles4people

Francesca Furzi - Going for Sustainability Gold

Francesca Furzi - Going for Sustainability Gold

Francesca Furzi, a luxury jeweler located in Turin, Italy has recently completed the CurrentState™ Sustainability Audit.  

THE CLIENT'S CHALLENGE

Francesca Furzi is an industrial designer and the owner of Francesca Furzi luxury jewelry line. She was born in Tuscany, grew artistically in Rome, and then professionally in major design studios of well-known automotive company.  Each jewel she designs is influenced by a journey incorporating the art of sculpture, the concreteness of the technical sketch, the harmony of vehicle shapes, the world of fashion, but also by history and other cultures. Much like her dedication to art, sculpture, culture and fashion, she wants her company to find that same harmony with nature and the environment. The most important green drivers for Francesca Furzi are social responsibility and enhanced reputation.  The luxury jewelry industry is not known for a strong commitment to the environment or sustainability.  By becoming dedicated to sustainability, Francesca Furzi distinguishes itself and puts it into a class of its own.

DIAGNOSTIC FINDINGS

Francesca Furzi completed the Small Business version of CurrentState and chose to complete all three modules - Green IT, Business and Facilities. The CurrentState Findings Report identified over 100 specific Quick Win opportunities as well as dozens of longer-term recommendations.  The Quick Wins and recommendations cover all areas of operations.

“CurrentState was very easy to complete.  We were able to submit our information through the internet at our own pace.” Ramon Ginah, CFO Francesca Furzi.

Green IT

The findings showed that Francesca Furzi is making good use of technology to increase connectivity and to take unnecessary paper out of the business processes. These are both important benefits of information technology. The finding also showed that there is a big opportunity to increase sustainability by establishing the IT policies and procedures suggested in the Quick Wins.

Facilities

Francesca Furzi scored especially high in the Facilities module.  Areas of strength include their heating & cooling system, lighting and furnishings. With some minor adjustments in the areas of recycling and kitchen & catering their organization, they will well on their way to residing in truly sustainable Facilities.

“The combination of an ideal type of office building and good common-sense practices contributed to their good score for Facilities.” Anthony Gilbreath, Principal at Caelus

Business

The Business module provided Francesca Furzi with a roadmap of the steps needed to create a solid foundation for a sustainability program.  30 specific Quick Wins opportunities were identified in this module. Once in place, their sustainability program will be well defined and easily managed. 

NEXT STEPS

“CurrentState showed us that we were already doing a lot of the right things, however good planning will allow us to go a lot further.” Francesca Furzi, Owner. 

We plan to study our Findings Report carefully to determine which Quick Wins we should do first.  Then we will create a step-by-step implementation plan to accomplish these.” Ramon Ginah, CFO Francesca Furzi. 

Francesca Furzi will now prioritize which Quick Wins it will begin to implement.  An excellent place to start would be the Quick Wins that addressed policies and procedures.  Beginning with policies and procedures will require that the overall sustainability strategy is agreed upon and well defined.  

ABOUT THE CURRENTSTATE EXPERIENCE
“CurrentState is a necessity for every company that is serious about going green.”  Ramon Ginah, CFO - Francesca Furzi

About Francesca Furzi
Francesca Furzi is a luxury jeweler located in Turin, Italy. The collection of Francesca Furzi is a limited edition and each piece is numbered. Produced entirely in Italy, each piece is handcrafted with passion and commitment by experienced hands.

web: http://www.francescafurzi.com
email: info@francescafurzi.com

DW Morgan - Becoming a Sustainability Leader

DW Morgan - Becoming a Sustainability Leader

Transportation and logistics service provider D.W. Morgan (DW Morgan) recently completed a CurrentState sustainability audit and the findings were impressive.  "DW Morgan is on the path to becoming a true sustainability leader in their industry," commented Anthony Gilbreath, a sustainability specialist at CRG Sustainable Solutions. "The audit results revealed they have many sustainability initiatives in place and ambitious plans for the future."  

CurrentState™ is a sustainability audit designed to help organizations understand how they can improve sustainability performance across all their operations. It is a 'best practices gap analysis' and a 'business practices maturity analysis' combined into one tool.  Once completed, the client receives a Findings Report that contains quick win opportunities, recommendations and analysis across over 20 different sustainability categories.  The report provides a comprehensive list of specific tasks that need to completed in order to excel in sustainability.

"It wasn’t until we received the findings report when we realized the true value of the CurrentState sustainability audit.  It not only provided us with an unbiased overview of where we rank today with our current sustainability program, but it also provided as a guide in developing a sustainability plan for both short term and long term objectives," commented Suriati Cevallos, Director of Quality, Compliance and Sustainability.  "The audit questions were well organized and the process was simple enough for even a novice to the sustainability world."

Morgan has long seen sustainability as a strategic priority—as well as a key value of its offerings to clients. “Morgan’s mandate is to optimize operations for our customers,” said Cevallos. “We focus on key manufacturing locations worldwide, coordinating critical flows of inventory, consolidating ground movements, reducing necessary trips, shifting transportation modes and eliminating miles driven without cargo. So, our solutions create a win-win: Substantial cost and time savings for the customer, along with improved sustainability.”

In 2010, Morgan took a leadership role in manufacturing supply chain operations by beginning to voluntarily measure its global carbon emissions and report gains to customers. Since then, Morgan has joined such initiatives as the EPA SmartWay program, the Carbon Disclosure Project, Transporte Limpio, PG&E ClimateSmart Program, Shred-it Recycling Program, ISO 9001:2008, C-TPAT and others. The company has been recognized multiple times by Supply & Demand Chain Executive’s “Green Supply Chain Partner” awards and was featured as a whitepaper case study by the Environmental Defense Fund.

About DW Morgan 

D.W. Morgan Company helps the world's top manufacturers provide Supply On Demand® for their clients. By combining transportation management and logistics services with coordinated, real-time information and strategic consulting, Morgan dramatically improves efficiency and reduces costs—while maximizing flexibility. Since 1990, Morgan has served a Who's Who of leading businesses, including Cisco Systems, Ericsson and Thermo Fisher.  Morgan has received numerous industry awards and has been named a Cisco Systems Supplier of the Year three times. Morgan is certified as a National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) Corporate Plus™ minority-owned business. The company's headquarters is located in Pleasanton, Calif., and it maintains operations offices around the world. To learn more about Morgan's  products and services, please visit www.dwmorgan.com

Parisleaf Printing and Design

Parisleaf Printing and Design

Parisleaf Printing and Design recently completed the CurrentState™ Sustainability Audit and received Platinum Certification - the highest certification level available.

THE CLIENT'S CHALLENGE

Parisleaf is a Printing and Design company located in Gainesville, Florida.  Parisleaf provides a variety of services which include printing, branding packages, web and logo design.

Parisleaf’s largest challenge is that traditional print related goods and services can have a significant negative impact on the environment.  Negative impacts occur at all stages of the paper life cycle -  the harvesting of trees, the processing of wood fiber into pulp andthe disposal of paper products at the end of their useful life.

However, Parisleaf has overcome these challenges. They offer carbon negative printing and web solutions to its clients. Parisleaf is able to achieve this because of their innovative green practices and the steps they take to mitigate their effect on the environment.  

DIAGNOSTIC FINDINGS

Parisleaf completed the Small Business version of CurrentState™ and chose to complete all three modules - Green IT, Business and Facilities.

“The CurrentState surveys were easy to fill out and complete. They were worded appropriately and were organized in a way that made the entire process efficient. The surveys were not overbearing and were constructed in a manner that allowed for a more detailed analysis of our company’s sustainability efforts.” - Chad Paris, Owner

Parisleaf achieved Platinum Certification - the highest certification level available. Platinum represents exceptional performance across all sustainability categories.

“The Findings Report gave our team here at Parisleaf an opportunity to examine the great strides we have already made in our sustainability efforts as well as the changes that we still need to make to improve our green initiatives.
We appreciated the way in which the surveys were broken down into individual sections which sought to examine everything from employee education methods to company power usage. We found the findings accurate and useful towards accomplishing Parisleaf’s green conservation efforts.” Chad Paris, Owner.

Parisleaf has several exceptional operational practices in place that set them apart.  These include:

  • planting 10 trees for every order
  • planting 100 trees for every website order
  • offering carbon ‘negative’ goods and service through mitigation activities
  • using 55% post-consumer recycled material for print jobs
  • using soy and vegetable-based inks
  • using chlorine-free paper stocks and VOC solvents
  • using water based finishes (such as Aqueous coating) instead of the non-biodegradable UV coatings

NEXT STEPS

The majority of quick wins and recommendations in the Findings Report suggest ways to fine-tune and improve existing initiatives.   

“Having seen the Findings Report, we take pride in all that has been accomplished at Parisleaf. We also will use the recommendations described in the report as a tool to encourage further sustainability growth within the company. We plan to integrate your presented advice with the short and long term goals of Parisleaf.” - Chad Paris, Owner

ABOUT THE CURRENTSTATE EXPERIENCE
“Our experience with CurrentState was quite pleasurable. The CurrentState team was committed to helping us complete their surveys in a timely manner.  Their team was always easily accessible and in constant communication with us. We appreciated their dedication during this joint project.” - Chad Paris, Owner

About Parisleaf Printing and Design
Parisleaf is a Printing and Design company located in Gainesville, Florida.  Parisleaf provides a variety of services which include printing, branding packages, web and logo design. More information about Parisleaf can be found at their website: http://www.parisleaf.com.