SANTA MONICA — The Santa Monica Sustainable Quality Awards will be accepting nominations for its 19th annual event which will take place at the Meridien Delfina Hotel on April 30, 2014. The awards will honor businesses that promote sustainability in the community and implement green practices.
SQA, co-chaired by Sustainable Works, is an organization that was founded in 1995 by the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, the City of Santa Monicaand Sustainable Works. The idea to start SQA came from Dan Ehrler, who was the Santa Monica Chamber President at the time. The Chamber’s Environmental Affairs Committee then created a sub-committee to host an annual awards program, inspired by the Santa Cruz Chamber of Commerce, which was holding a similar event at the time.
The purpose of SQA’s annual event is not only to honor green businesses, but to inspire other businesses to adopt the same practices. Even the luncheon operates on sustainable means — there are sustainable food choices, zero waste and carbon offsets.
The awards will be given in three areas: Economic Development, Social Responsibility and Stewardship of the Natural Environment. Social responsibility is defined as the company’s ability to provide quality jobs, effective communication, a family-friendly work ethic and benefit to the community. The businesses can either win the SQA Grand Prize or the SQA Excellence Award. Winners of the award will receive a beautiful trophy made of recycled glass, coverage from major media outlets, access to the SQA logo and promotional materials, publicity from the city’s publications and more.
“We’ve had over 40 nominations last year,” said Carl Hansen, Director of Government Affairs, to Canyon News. “We’ve always been on the cutting edge of sustainable practices and we’re excited to see more.” Previous winners have included a diverse array of businesses such as ZJ Boarding House, Bru’s Wiffle Joint, Yoga Works and LA Car Guy. The award ceremony will consist of a luncheon that will offer engaging entertainment as well as marketing and networking opportunities.
For tickets or nominations, visit www.smchamber.com/sqa. Anyone can nominate by visiting the website, clicking on “How to Apply” and downloading the nomination form. Nominations can be submitted by email or fax and must be submitted before Monday, December 16, after which a selection committee of qualified professionals will choose a group of finalists who will then complete an application form. Self-nominations are also allowed, but past winners cannot apply again.
For additional information, contact Carl Hansen at the Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce at 310-393-9825 ext.116. Businesses that are interested in incorporating sustainable practices in their workplace can find a step-by-step guide on Sustainable Work’s website at www.sustainableworks.org.