NRDC Announces Second Annual Growing Green Awards to Honor Extraordinary Contributions in Sustainable Food

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) announces its second annual Growing Green
Awards to recognize individuals who have demonstrated original leadership in the field of
sustainable food.  Through this national award, NRDC will recognize extraordinary contributions
that advance ecologically integrated farming practices, climate stewardship, water stewardship,
farmland preservation, and social responsibility from farm to fork. 

A Growing Green Award will be given to an outstanding individual in each of four categories,
including Food Producer, Business Leader, Thought Leader, and Water Steward.  A $10,000 cash
prize will be awarded in the Food Producer category and all winners will be widely celebrated
through outreach to media and NRDC’s networks.  Award selections will be made by an
independent panel of sustainable food experts.  Information about award eligibility, selection
criteria and process, and the award selection panel are provided below.
Recipients may represent a variety of fields including food production, food service, retail or
restaurants, academia, journalists, policy advocacy, and government.  The panel will consider
candidates from across the country (candidates operating outside of the United States will not be
considered). Individuals in the following four categories are eligible:
Food Producer: Farmers or other food producers, including aquaculture, who employ innovative
techniques to sustain agriculture, the natural environment, workers and community;

Business Leader: Entrepreneurs who effectively use the marketplace to promote sustainable food
systems, develop infrastructure that enables producers to be more sustainable, or advance
sustainable innovations anywhere along the supply chain from farm to fork;
Thought Leader: Visionaries who advance sustainability as it relates to food through creative
research, public education, and outreach;
Water Steward: Farmers or other food producers who have made extraordinary contributions in
demonstrating water efficiency, sustainable water use and the protection of water quality. This
category is a special addition for 2010 only.
Growing Green Awards Criteria
In selecting from nominees, the awards selection panel will consider the following criteria:
• Innovation in promoting ecologically-integrated food systems.  This may include minimizing
inputs of energy, water, and chemicals; reducing pollution and global warming gas emissions;
use of on-farm polyculture; increasing natural resilience; and stewardship of biodiversity,
pollinators, open space and land resources.
• Potential to achieve wide scale adoption, implementation or behavioral change.
• Advancement of health, safety, and economic viability for farmers, farmworkers and rural
Selection Panel and Process
The awards will be selected by an independent panel with staffing assistance from NRDC.  Winners
will be celebrated in early May at an event to benefit NRDC in San Francisco.  
NRDC is grateful to the following sustainable food leaders who have volunteered to join the
Growing Green Awards selection panel:
Susan Clark, Executive Director, Columbia Foundation (Panel Chair)
A.G. Kawamura, Secretary of Agriculture, California Department of Food and Agriculture
Michael Pollan, Knight Professor of Science and Environmental Journalism at UC Berkeley 
Nora Pouillon, Chef and founder of Restaurant Nora, the nation’s first certified organic restaurant
How to Apply
Applications will be accepted until close of business on December 4, 2009.  The application must be
submitted electronically using the website application at: 
Application materials may include up to 10 pages of text (12 point font please), photographs,
articles or other supporting materials.  Please contact Suzanne Vyborney with questions at or (415) 875-6134.

Photo credit: California Association of Winegrape Growers


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