Hanson Bridgett LLP - Sustainable Business News, an E-zine for Sustainable Practices


August 2010

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The Power of Social Technology for Good

Social media is a powerful storytelling platform — where stakeholder engagement is a given, and the only limitation is the word count. The same tools that galvanized rescue and rebuilding efforts in Haiti also helped fuel Pepsi's project to crowdsource and fund ideas to "refresh" the world. This transformation was evident during the Mumbai terrorist attacks as microblogs informed new escape routes or in viewing Dove’s latest online video that set out to redefine beauty for women globally. Social media is a proven, powerful tool for branding and marketing, employee engagement, innovation, customer loyalty and fundraising. We're just starting to see its potential to do much more.

Come to our forum to hear experts from Yahoo!, Gap Inc., Whole Foods Market and the Haas School of Business discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with social media platforms. Engage with fellow attendees, including Hanson Bridgett attorneys, about how the legal landscape has evolved in response to these new mediums.


PhotoKellie A. McElhaney, PhD
Consultant, Professor & Faculty Director at the Center for Responsible Business, Haas School of Business
University of California - Berkeley

Dr. McElhaney is the Alexander Faculty Fellow and the founding Faculty Director of the Center for Responsible Business at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley. She launched this center in 2003, which has helped place corporate responsibility squarely as one of the core competencies and competitive advantages of the Haas School. Her center has received global critical acclaim with The Financial Times rating Haas number one in the world in 2008. Professor McElhaney teaches courses on strategic corporate social responsibility (“CSR”) in all of the MBA degree programs at Haas. The courses include in-depth, experiential consulting engagements with companies on real-world, high-visibility, strategic CSR challenges. She also teaches extensive executive education in this area. Kellie was named a Faculty Pioneer by the Aspen Institute in 2005. Her research focus is in three areas: (1) analyzing and developing companies’ CSR strategy and its alignment with corporate strategy, business objectives, core competencies, and business value; (2) exploring the linkage between diversity and CSR, and using CSR as a hook to re-engage women with business as employees, consumers and investors; (3) the business value and opportunities in branding, communication and CSR, on which she has written a book titled Just Good Business: The Strategic Guide to Aligning Corporate Responsibility and Brand.

PhotoConnie Chan
Yahoo! for Good

Connie Chan is Manager of Yahoo! for Good, the company's Social Responsibility department. She is responsible for leading Yahoo!'s online cause marketing initiatives and managing social media for Yahoo! Green.

Since 2006, Connie has been managing programs that connect Yahoo!'s community of 600 million consumers to causes they care about, including increasing social engagement on Yahoo! via the 'You In?' Random Acts of Kindness program as well as launching and running Yahoo! Green's vibrant social communities on Facebook and Twitter. Connie also oversees the Yahoo! Employee Foundation, a grassroots philanthropic organization that has empowered Yahoo! employees to give away over $11 million to local nonprofit organizations. Prior to joining Yahoo!, Connie worked at Jumpstart for Young Children and SCORE! Educational Centers.

Connie received her Master's in education from Stanford University and her Bachelor's in business administration from the University of Southern California.

PhotoMelissa Swanson Fifield
Director, Environmental Affairs & Brand Engagement
Gap Inc.

Melissa Swanson Fifield is Director of Environmental Affairs & Brand Engagement for Gap Inc. In this role, Melissa is responsible for strengthening the company's environmental sustainability programs and developing strategies to further integrate social responsibility and environmental objectives into the company's Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Piperlime and Athleta brands.

She has been with Gap Inc. for more than four years, previously leading communications efforts related to the company's ethical sourcing and environmental sustainability initiatives, including the launch of the company's 2005-2006 Social Responsibility Report, and the installation of a one megawatt solar array at Gap Inc.'s distribution center in Fresno, CA.
Prior to joining Gap Inc., Melissa served clients on a wide range of issues, including energy and the environment, international trade and financial services as part of the Public Affairs practice at Burson-Marsteller, a global communications firm. She also served as a legislative aide to U.S. Representative Lois Capps (D-CA) in both Santa Barbara and Washington, DC.

Melissa graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with a B.A. in Political Science and an emphasis in Public Service.

PhotoSirr Less
Global Vice President of Communications
Whole Foods Market, Inc.

Sirr Less has been a web community pioneer for the past ten years. He blazed trails in user defined content and social community development online. He helped SEGA’s HEAT.NET attain early social networking capacities in the late 90’s. While working for NOKIA, he was able to bring user generated and branded video content to mobile platforms. Sirr and his brother Vadan founded Ellora Tech, a production company, in 2004, and the digital agency Integrated Alchemy Media (IA) in 2007.  They specialized in quick and agile solutions for mobile and web media creation and distribution. Whole Foods Markets recruited Sirr as Global VP of Communications earlier this year, where he continues to work with Vadan in creating online content that expands on the message of the company’s active and passionate community.


Moderated by Hanson Bridgett Attorney Leslie Keil.

Thursday, September 16, 2010
5:30pm – 8:00pm

Hanson Bridgett LLP
425 Market Street, 26th Floor
San Francisco, California
Directions »

Pre-registration is required.
Space is limited.
Cost: $45.00

Register Now »


About Hanson Bridgett's Sustainable Business Leadership Forums

Hanson Bridgett's Sustainable Business Leadership Forums feature monthly presentations and networking focused on advancing sustainable businesses. Past topics have included legislation, venture capital, cleantech, green building, microfinance and energy management among others. These topics are complemented with expert speakers from various sectors of the sustainable movement to discuss private/public sector initiatives, political advocacy and corporate social responsibility. At our forums, you will get in-depth information about the opportunities, challenges and profits associated with going green. The forum provides attendees the opportunity to learn and connect with like-minded business people who can help you advance your venture or area of interest in the sustainability movement.

If you have interest in a topic that you would like to see covered at an upcoming Sustainable Business Forum, please submit suggestions to HBSustainable@HansonBridgett.com.



Criterion Ventures Structure Lab: San Francisco

New corporate forms are blurring the boundaries between for profits and nonprofits. Old silos of financing and funding streams are giving way to hybrid structures like social capital firms, public/private collaborations and venture philanthropy. Entrepreneurs and established organizations alike are bending the marketplace to meet multiple bottom lines including a return on social capital. While some nimbly explore the space between for profit and nonprofit, many more are struggling to make sense of the new landscape of social change.

Criterion Ventures is a leading voice in the structuring of social ventures. Criterion’s dual identity in launching social ventures, both for clients and by taking an equity position with internally developed ideas, has resulted in a nuanced understanding of what it takes to launch a venture. It is itself a unique structure in the world of social ventures. As the world of social enterprise matures, Criterion is helping to create the methodology that can make it more accessible. Criterion has spent the past year creating an easy to engage process to understand how new forms are structured and how they might work to support the efforts of social change agents.

The Structure Lab provides participants with a roadmap of possibilities to navigate this new territory. Participants will have a clear understanding of the range of possible legal structures that can be employed for their newly forming venture, pros and cons of each of those structures as it applies to their prospective venture, and will be prepared to work with legal counsel to take the next steps in understanding and establishing the optimal legal structure.

Thursday, September 23
9:30am - 5:00pm
Register online »

Wednesday, December 8
9:30am - 5:00pm
Register online »

Hanson Bridgett
425 Market Street, 26th Floor
San Francisco, California
Directions »

Pre-registration is required.
Space is limited.

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Urban Solutions is a non-profit social enterprise, which uses its fee income to fund pro bono services to low-income entrepreneurs. Urban Solutions’ mission is to foster the well-being of disadvantaged communities by helping to increase neighborhood commercial vitality, strengthen small businesses, create jobs, encourage diversity and promote sustainability.

Urban Solutions offers a comprehensive range of economic development services, free of charge, to its clients, including:

  • Audit & report - Find opportunities, quantify environmental and cost savings
  • Access to capital - Secure tax incentives, rebates, grants, low-interest loans
  • Implementation - Implement green practices for energy, water, waste, chemicals and purchasing
  • San Francisco Green Businesses Certification - Evaluate current practices, create action plan to meet checklist requirements
  • Marketing and employee education - Communicate achievements, engage employees to make lasting changes

To learn more, contact: (415) 553 - 4433 x107 or email anthony@urbansolutionsSF.org.

Join Urban Solutions for the Green Business Symposium taking place on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 from 1:30 to 6:30pm.

Presented by Urban Solutions and sponsored by Citi, this event will bring together local business owners and sustainability leaders to discuss innovative sustainability practices. The event will include a keynote address by Kevin Surace (founder of green building company Serious Materials and Inc. Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2009), a panel discussion featuring green experts and small group Solutions Circles, offering participants an opportunity to share and solve each others’ challenges. A networking session will take place from 5:00 – 6:30.


Hanson Bridgett sponsored ACG's monthly breakfast "CEO Perspectives on Buying & Selling Their Companieson August 3rd.

For its contributions made to Bay Area-based charitable organizations, Hanson Bridgett was included in the SF Business Times 2010 “Top Corporate Philanthropists in the Greater Bay Area” list.

Hanson Bridgett is sponsoring Sustainable Industries Economic Forum on September 16th.

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Executive Information Session
Tuesday, September 14th

We would like to invite you to join us for an informational event, Tuesday, September 14th, with graduates and students from our Executive Program, as well as Executive Program faculty. You'll have the opportunity to learn first-hand from a community of executives and managers who are incorporating sustainable business practices into their careers, and how the Presidio Executive Program has helped them achieve their goals.

Presidio’s Executive Program gives participants the opportunity to engage with leading sustainability experts as well as senior-level peers who are entrepreneurs, nonprofit leaders and corporate managers. Join our growing network of innovators and civic leaders in sustainability by submitting your application before the program starts October 7th

Tuesday, September 14, 2010
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Wine and light appetizers will be served.

Presidio Graduate School - Administrative Office
Presidio Building 36
Corner of Graham St. and Lincoln Blvd.

If you are available and interested in attending, please reply online or call Diane Mailey at 415-561-0224.

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Keiretsu Forum would like to invite you to join them at their San Francisco Summit on August 25th

It's a rare opportunity to view investment opportunities presented by companies with innovative products and services in leading industries.

Keiretsu Forum is the world's largest angel investor community with 19 chapters on three continents. Since Keiretsu Forum's founding in 2000, its 850 members have invested more than $200 million in 260 companies in technology, consumer products, healthcare/life sciences, real estate and other segments with high growth potential. The San Francisco Business Journal once again ranked Keiretsu Forum as the "Most Active Angel Investors in the Bay Area" in 2009. More information »

Who should attend? Individuals with an entrepreneurial spirit and/or passion for supporting innovation and growth.

Keiretsu Forum San Francisco Summit  
Wednesday, August 25th
7:30am – 11:30am
San Francisco, California

To reply, please contact Mandy Gamarra at mandy@keiretsuforum.com and mention Hanson Bridgett in your email.

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SDForum’s Clean Tech Breakfast: “Revamping the Smart Grid”

The smart grid is coming to town! The current devices to generate, transmit and distribute electrical power are vulnerable to failure. The need to revamp this outdated technology is apparent, especially in an age of renewable energy. Come listen to our panel of experts, which include key players as well as investors in this massive enterprise, discuss the integration of both large scale and micro-scale technology, innovative business models, and giant investments and returns.

List of speakers and registration information »

Online Pricing — SDForum Members: $20, Non-members: $30, Platinum Pass: $0
At the Door — $10 Additional Charge

Tuesday, September 21, 2010
8:00am – 10:00am

SAP Labs
Building 1, 3410 Hillview Avenue
Palo Alto, California
Directions »

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Social Venture Network's San Francisco Local Gathering

Social Venture Network (SVN) invites you to connect with other socially responsible CEOs, entrepreneurs and investors to network, find support for your business challenges, and build strategic relationships to expand your impact. If you believe that business has the power to create social change and want to connect with other mission-driven entrepreneurs in the area, come join us. The atmosphere will be casual with most of the time left open for conversation and mingling. Appetizers, beer and wine will be provided. We look forward to seeing you there.

Thursday, September 30, 2010
5:30pm – 7:30pm

Hanson Bridgett LLP
425 Market Street, 26th Floor
San Francisco, California
Directions »

For more information, please contact Jessica Aebi at 415-561-6501x10 or jessicaa@svn.org.

Founded in 1987, Social Venture Network is a peer-to-peer network of social venture entrepreneurs, CEOs, and investors who use the power of business to build a just economy and sustainable planet. SVN's next national conference will be October 21-24 in Long Branch, NJ, at Ocean Place Resort.

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“Sustainable Winegrowing Award to go to HALL Wines of California.” PRWeb.  

“Long delayed Green Chemistry rules take center stage.”  Capital Weekly. 

“Progress on Climate Change and Green Jobs Legislation Stalls in Washington.”  Green Jobs Ready. 

“Got a killer smart grid idea? General Electric’s got $200 million to spend on it.”  GRIST. 

“Lake Tahoe Basin Prosperity Plan: Geotourism could be big revenue source, economists say.”  Sierra Sun.

“Google Enters 20-Year, 114 Megawatt Deal With Iowa Wind Farm.”  GoodCleanTech.com. 

“Big Climate Bill Nixed for the Year.”  Green Energy News. 

“The Princeton Review Names the Greenest Colleges in U.S.”  GreenBiz.com. 

“10 Principles of Responsible Product Stewardship.”  GreenBiz.com. 

“Local Governments Drive Product Stewardship.”  Environmental Leader. 

“Institutional Investors Increasingly Looking at Green Private Equity and Venture Capital, According to New Survey.”  PRNewswire

“US VC investment in cleantech continues upward trajectory with $1.5 billion investment in Q2 2010.”  Ernst & Young

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  August 2010

2010 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings: The Climate for Efficiency is Now — Pacific Grove, CA


USGBC: Tour of LEED Platinum Energy Foundation Office — San Francisco, CA


Green Chemistry and Sustainable Studies Info Session — Berkeley, CA


Social Entrepreneur Boot Camp — San Francisco, CA


Opportunity Green Business Conference — Los Angeles, CA,


USGBC: CALGREEN Initiative: Moving Forward or Backward? — San Francisco, CA


CAPCOA Climate Change Forum — San Francisco, CA

  September 2010

Conservation Corps North Bay Open House and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony — Cotati, CA 


Women In Green Forum — Pasadena, CA


Presidio Graduate School - Executive Information Session — San Francisco, CA


Hanson Bridgett’s Sustainable Leadership Forum: Power of Social Technology for Good — San Francisco, CA


USGBC: Workshop: LEED AP Interior Design & Construction Exam Prep — San Francisco, CA


SDForum’s Clean Tech Breakfast: Revamping the Smart Grid— Palo Alto, CA


Climate Ride California 2010 — Fortuna to San Francisco, CA


RILA's Environmental Sustainability & Compliance Conference — San Diego, CA


2010 Opportunity Green Conference — Los Angeles, CA


Criterion Ventures Structure Lab — San Francisco, CA


Keiretsu Forum San Francisco Summit — San Francisco, CA


Electric Vehicle Integration Into the Smart Grid of the Future - G2V & V2G — Los Angeles, CA


Urban Solutions’ First Annual Green Business Symposium — San Francisco, CA


USGBC: Workshop: LEED EBOM Intro, Overview & the Business Case — San Francisco, CA


Social Venture Network San Francisco Local Gathering — San Francisco, CA

9/30 - 10/2

West Coast Green — San Francisco, CA

  October 2010

National Safety Council 2010 Congress & Expo — San Diego, CA


GRI Certified Sustainability Reporting Training — San Diego, CA


Biogas USA 2010 — San Francisco, CA


Bioneers Conference — San Rafael, CA


Corporate Responsibility Training (IRCA certified) — San Francisco, CA 


GreenBiz Innovation Forum — San Francisco, CA


Nano Bio Clean Tech 2010: 6th International Congress of Nanotechnology — San Francisco, CA


ASA-CSSA-SSSA 2010 International Annual Meetings — Long Beach, CA

  November 2010

Cleantech Focus Los Angeles: Water Efficiency and the Corporate Perspective — Los Angeles, CA, 

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Hanson Bridgett is a leading provider of legal services to organizations engaged in sustainable business.
Our clients, who range from large corporations to cutting edge start-ups and socially responsible investors, have selected us because we help them succeed and foster the growth of the sustainable business movement. Our attorneys provide legal advisory services and offer in-depth expertise in the areas of:

  • Clean Technologies
  • Energy
  • Water
  • Green Building, Transportation and Smart Development
  • Sustainable Products and Services
  • Responsible Finance
  • Corporate Responsibility and Governance
  • Responsible Branding and Promotion

Teresa V. Pahl, Partner   Teresa V. Pahl
(415) 995-5079
email »
Jonathan S. Storper, Partner   Jonathan S. Storper
(415) 995-5040
email »
Scott C. Smith, Partner   Scott C. Smith
(415) 995-5892
email »
Yolanda C. Manzone, Associate   Leslie A. Keil
(415) 995-5125
email »

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Copyright © 2010 Hanson Bridgett LLP

The above has been provided as a service by the law firm of Hanson Bridgett and may be considered an advertisement or solicitation. The content enclosed is not intended to provide legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship.