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

Summer 2011

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Structure Labs from Criterion Ventures

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.

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.

For more information about the San Francisco/Bay Area Structure Lab, email structure@criterionventures.com or visit www.criterionventures.com/structure.

Thursday, September 29th
9:30 am - 4:00 pm

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

Pre-registration is required.
Space is limited.

Register online »


Support AB 361 (Huffman) Benefit Corporation Legislation in California

Businesses and organizations from all over California strongly support AB 361 (Huffman) Benefit Corporation Legislation. Benefit Corporation Legislation enables the development of a growing sector of the economy comprised of innovative businesses that seek to create benefit for society in addition to profit for shareholders. Business leaders in this new economy want the legal protection, currently not afforded under the California corporate code, to pursue a higher corporate purpose than simply maximizing shareholder value. Importantly, companies seek to do far more than simply pick a single charity or environmental task to improve their image (often called “green washing”), but rather seek to improve the world we work in by creating high quality jobs that improve quality of life in our communities. Benefit Corporation Legislation contains the general public benefit provisions that ensure that consumers, investors, and policy makers can clearly distinguish companies who are pursuing a higher corporate purpose from those that are doing something more narrow for marketing purposes.

Benefit Corporation Legislation also provides additional accountability to shareholders by redefining the fiduciary duty of directors, requiring them to consider the impact of their decisions on the long term interests of society, not just the short term interests of shareholders, even when considering a sale of the business. To ensure increased transparency to shareholders and the public, Benefit Corporations are also required to assess their overall social and environmental performance against a third party standard. By doing so, the company and all its stakeholders are made aware of how well the Benefit Corporation is doing relative to independent, credible, transparent, and comparable standards. Markets thrive on clarity and transparency, and these third party standards provisions create a level playing field and a more efficient and effective marketplace. They prevent the bad actors from simply cherry picking a few facts that are favorable for their image.

Benefit Corporation Legislation is now law in Maryland, Vermont, Virginia and New Jersey. Benefit Corporation Legislation has been introduced and is progressing rapidly in New York, Pennsylvania, Michigan, North Carolina, and Hawaii. It has attracted strong bipartisan support in every state, because it is entirely voluntary and has no budget impact.

Voice your support for AB 361 (Huffman) Benefit Corporation Legislation »


On July 20th Hanson Bridgett was awarded the SF Business Times Community Partner in Sustainability Award.

Hanson Bridgett has been awarded the 2011 Diversity Award from the State Bar of California for our long term, sustained accomplishments toward increasing diversity in the legal profession.

Hanson Bridgett announced the opening of our new East Bay office in Walnut Creek.

Hanson Bridgett Partner Jonathan Storper received an award from Food From the Bar recognizing his leadership during the 20th annual food drive. In addition, Hanson Bridgett received the Platinum Partner award for our donations and efforts during the drive.

On July 19th Scott Smith presented at Opal Financial Group's Public Funds Summit East in Newport, RI.

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Executive Certificate Program Accepting Applications for Spring

The Executive Certificate Program in Sustainable Leadership at Presidio Graduate School is accepting applications for the spring session. Join us for an information webinar to learn how graduates of the program have transformed their careers and how to apply for our sessions.

For more information, email certificate@presidioedu.org or call Carl Schneebeck at (415) 655-8956

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Social Capital Market Manifesto 2.0 by Kevin Jones

"Investors don’t enter the social capital market just to make money; they come in to make a difference and get a positive return on their capital. Sometimes that return is financial first, sometimes it’s impact first, but both sides of the spectrum are needed to build the market at the intersection of money and meaning." 

Read more »

Don't Miss 30% Off SOCAP11

What does Money + Meaning = ? Now in its fourth year, SOCAP is the premiere global conference celebrating a new form of capitalism that recognizes our ability to direct the power & efficiency of market systems toward social impact.

As partners of SOCAP11, we invite you to take advantage of our 30% off registration code (expires August 23rd): HansonBridgett30. 

Register for SOCAP11 at SOCAP11.net »

September 6th - 9th

Fort Mason Center
38 Fort Mason
San Francisco, California
Directions »

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2011 Angel Capital Expo

Keiretsu Forum, the world's largest angel investment community will hold its upcoming Angel Capital Expo on November 17, 2011 from 7:30am to 3:30pm at the Julia Morgan Ballroom in San Francisco.

Angel Capital Expo is the premier gathering of angel investors and entrepreneurs seeking funding capital to grow their business. On November 17, 2011 more than 300 of the Bay Area's most active and respected angel investors will attend the Expo.

Thursday, November 17th
7:30 am – 2:30 pm

Julia Morgan Ballroom
465 California Street
San Francisco, California
Directions »

To register or receive more information, please contact Nina Quasebarth at nina@keiretsuforum.com.

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August 2011

Tour a LEED Gold Project - Four Embarcadero Center, San Francisco CA

Women in Green Forum, Santa Monica CA

September 2011

Mother Earth News Fair, San Rafael, CA,

2nd Façade Design and Delivery Conference, Los Angeles, CA

WCA Smart Grid SIG Presents: Electric Vehicles in the Smart Grid, Palo Alto, CA

Utility Scale Solar Summit, San Diego, CA

Sustainable Industries Economic Forum, San Francisco, CA

Structure Labs from Criterion Ventures, San Francisco, CA

October 2011

Advanced Energy Solutions Event, San Diego, CA

Biogas West, San Francisco, CA

GreenBiz Innovation Forum 2011, San Francisco, CA

Wireless Power Summit 2011, San Jose, CA

Green California Community Colleges Summit and Green California Schools Summit, Pasadena, CA

Sustainable Industries Economic Forum, San Francisco, CA

LEDs 2011: Bringing Lighting to Life, San Diego, CA

OLEDs World Summit, San Francisco, CA

4th Annual Renewable Energy Finance Forum - West, San Francisco, CA

Tech Women SIG, Location TBA, CA

November 2011

BSR Conference 2011, "Redefining Leadership," San Francisco, CA

Advanced Biofuels Markets 2011, San Francisco, CA

5th Annual Opportunity Green Business Conference, 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
Senior Counsel
(415) 995-5125
email »

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Copyright © 2011 Hanson Bridgett LLP

The above has been sent 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.

Hanson Bridgett LLP, 425 Market Street, 26th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94105