|GFA, founded by Holly:|
Ei's predecessor organization
Ei was originally formed as the home for the Zero Waste Zones (ZWZ) launched in 2009 as a Green Foodservice Alliance (GFA) program within the Georgia Restaurant Association.
When the National Restaurant Association (NRA) purchased the ZWZ in late 2012, Ei was propelled into an amazing metamorphosis to create a new identity & initiatives. The August 2013 IMPACT Blog article, Ei Emerges Strong from Metamorphosis, introduces the three new platforms: Product Stewardship, Recycling Refinement and Water Use | Toxicity.
Written as a synopsis of the Annual Ei Partner Meeting, The IMPACT Blog article, Ei 2014: A Year of Evolution, gives an in-depth overview of the work-in-progress and accomplishments within the three platforms. At the meeting Ei founder Holly Elmore gave the Annual Ei Year in Review presentation with the following opening slide:
2012: Year of Accomplishments | Completions - in late 2012 the ZWZ were sold to the NRA catapulting Ei into a major metamorphosis. The ZWA Blog article, The NRA Acquires ZWZ, announces the purchase.
2013: Year of Transitions | Introductions - until fall 2013 Ei flowed within the metamorphosis stage. As the year drew to a close, the three-platforms approach for Ei initiatives emerged.
2014: Year of Foundations | Evolutions - in 2014 the platforms were grounded with initiative launches and supporting taglines.
|Ei Partners Louis Herrera of Hilex|
Hilex Poly & Doug Kunnemann
of NatureWorks @ 2014 Annual Mtg
In celebration of Ei's Big FIVE Birthday long-term Ei Supporter Affairs to Remember Caterers (ATR) planted a tree in Ei's honor! On Saturday, February 21, Holly and Travis Taylor with ATR attended the Trees Atlanta weekly tree planting. WOW, Trees Atlanta selected a six foot sacred Ginkgo tree for the ceremonial planting. According to Ted Andrews in Nature Speak:
The Ginkgo is the sole survivor of a family of trees that was around when the dinosaurs walked the earth. It is considered a living fossil with the ability to survive millions of years of change and even the soot and grime of modern cities.
|Ginkgo tree sign|
With amazing timing, the combined Ei Blogs - The IMPACT and Zero Waste in ACTION (ZWA) - surpassed the coveted 250,000 pageviews milestone during the tree planting. The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Blogs Tops 250K Pageviews, celebrates the achievement along with supporting impressive stats.
As chronicled in The IMPACT Blog article, Ei Awards, Recognition & Awards, Ei was honored throughout 2014 for achievements that spanned back to the GFA days.
|Ei Team w/ Zero Waste Award|
Awards continued in the fall when Holly was the recipient of the Green Ribbon Award at the Atlanta Les Dames d'Escoffier International 14th Annual Afternoon in the Country. The prestigious award was given in honor of Holly's sustainability work in the foodservice industry dating back to the GFA. The referenced article includes the many other honors and recognition received during the monumental year.
Ei's journey is well-documented in blog articles, Ei FB albums and detailed website pages. The Milestones page lists significant events in reverse chronological order on a monthly basis that contributed to current success. Supporting article, album and page links with detailed information are included in the listings. Here is a short milestone synopsis by year:
- February 05 - Ei incorporates as a Georgia non-profit corporation.
- May 24 - Compost, The Quiet Hero makes his debut presentation, via spokesperson Holly as ZWZ Director, in a 90-minute solo presentation at the NRA Show in Chicago. The PPT presentation is available for download on the Ei Speaking Engagement page.
- November 18 - Ei receives the IRS letter granting 501(c)3 non-profit status.
|Holly & the Chris Triad|
- February 23 - The NRA announces their national collaboration with Ei | ZWZ at the the ZWZ Two-Year Anniversary Press Conference hosted at the World of Coca-Cola. The ZWA Blog article, ZWZ Garners National Support, is an overview of the press conference and NRA announcement.
- May 21 – Compost, The Quiet Hero makes an encore performance at the 2011 NRA Show with a 90-minute session accompanied by the Chris Triad: Chris Moyer (NRA), Chris Newman (EPA, Region 5) and Chris Koetke (Kendall College). The ZWA Blog post, Compost, The Quiet Hero @ 2011 NRA Show, includes session details.
- May 23 - Marlin Gottschalk, Director of the Sustainability Division of the GA Department of Natural Resources and Ei Advisory Council Member, passes from complications related to his cancer treatment. The ZWA Blog post, Farewell to a Friend, Colleague & Mentor, is Holly's personal tribute to Marlin.
- October 31 - Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) includes a contract provision in the concessions RFP requiring food vendors to use compostable packaging. The ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Airport Makes a Bold Statement, includes the specific language and other details. Michael Cheyne, ATL Director of Asset Management & Sustainability, accepted the 2011 Going Green Airports Award on behalf of the Sustainable Food Court Initiative (SFCI) - Atlanta Airport Pilot for the compostable packaging contract provision. The ZWA Blog article, Atlanta Airport SFCI Pilot Wins National Award, gives the details.
- December 14 - Ei orchestrates the first annual Sustainable Food & Beverage Packaging Value Chain Meeting, a gathering of non-profits and trade associations across the food and beverage packaging value chain. The referenced website page lists the annual meetings along with the corresponding blog article and PPT presentations available for download.
Indy Ei Partner Tour group
Ei Chair Scott Seydel in front
- April 12 – The Georgia Dome accepts the invitation to serve as the SFCI - Event Venue Pilot. The ZWA Blog, Georgia Dome – SFCI Event Venue Pilot!, announces the new pilot and gives accolades to the Dome for its sustainability commitment.
- July 13 -14 The first Ei Partner Tours are hosted in Indianapolis by Heritage Interactive Services and Hilex Poly. The referenced page details the Indy and subsequent Ei Partner Tours along with links to respective blog articles and Ei FB albums.
- August 21 - The plastic film recycling pilot launches at Concord Mills, the Charlotte-based SFCI - Shopping Mall Pilot. The ZWA Blog post, ACTION – Theme for SFCI Shopping Mall Pilot, documents the most likely first shopping mall plastic film recycling program launch.
- September 28 - The NRA completes the acquisition of the ZWZ program; the ZWA Blog post, Ei: An Established Program Creator, announces the program transfer.
- October 12 - The November issue of Whole Living, a Martha Stewart publication, hit the stands with the feature article Spoil Alert profiling Holly as she hosts the author on a two-day interview marathon of Atlanta’s wasted food crusaders. The ZWA Blog post, Atlanta Wasted Food Heroes in National Spotlight, is an article overview along with commentary.
- November 16 - Ei announces a new mission statement via the IMPACT Blog article, Ei: New Mission Statement | New Directions. In the IMPACT Blog article, Ei Partner Program Evolves, Ei announces the sponsor program evolves into a partner program.
|S-SMRT Team "picking the|
Dome" for compostable items
- May 09 - Ei hosts the first Ei Partner conference panel at the USZWBC Conference. Ei Partners BASF, Piazza Produce and HMSHost presented on the Zero Waste is a Team Sport panel, moderated by Holly. The ZWA blog post Zero Waste is a Team Sport, a powerful USZWBC conference panel is a panel overview. PPT presentations are available for download on the Ei Speaking Engagements page.
- September 29 – The city-wide plastic film recycling template pilot, which later evolves into the Source-Separated Materials Recycling Template (S-SMRT), is announced in the ZWA Blog post, If it was easy, it would already be done.
- October 13 – It is official: Ei is a sub-grantee under the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s EPA Region 4’s grant to scale-up composting in Charlotte, NC. The ZWA Blog post, Scaling-up composting in Charlotte, NC, is a grant overview along with listing the team members. The Ei Charlotte Visits page documents Charlotte Ei | Grant Team visits and Ei's important work in Charlotte.
- December 17 - Holly is inducted into Lambda Alpha International, the Honorary Society for the Advancement of Land Economics. Holly's election to the LAI Atlanta Chapter membership is in recognition of a successful career implementing sustainable best practices in the foodservice industry. The IMPACT article, Lambda Alpha International Atlanta Chapter: growing membership, influence & impact, documents Holly's induction and gives an overview of LAI.
Airborne Kitchen Grease Team
on ATL roof
- March 01 - The American Association of Airport Executives' February | March Airport Magazine published the AIRBORNE KITCHEN GREASE: A New Frontier in Sustainability, A simple solution saves tremendous water use, labor and dollars article in the Asset Management Department. The article is co-written by Holly and Michael Cheyne. The ZWA Blog article, Atlanta Airport Presents a Proactive Approach to Airborne Kitchen Grease, provides the article details, context and link. The Airborne Kitchen Grease page details initiative work-in-progress and lists related blog articles.
- May 01 - Ei is an official EPA Food Recovery Challenge (FRC) Endorser! The ZWA Blog article, EPA Food Recovery Challenge: Region IV launches FRC in hospitality sector, introduces the FRC along with Ei’s role in program support.
- May 8 & 9 -
- Contract provisions require team work necessary for zero waste success,
- USZWBC names Ei the 2015 USZBC Conference -The Stars of Zero Waste - media partner for the Los Angeles event. The ZWA Blog article, 2015 Zero Waste Conference: A Star-Studded Event, announces the conference.
With 2014 the "Year of Foundations | Evolutions," 2015 is destined as the "Year of ACTION!" The stage is set, foundation built, team in-place for Ei's incredible journey to catapult into amazing new dimensions of impact, recognition and respect!