WHO WE ARE
The mission of the International Green Industry Hall of Fame is to recognize those pioneers, leaders, innovators, creators and visionaries who have made significant contributions to the green industry. Additionally, we are committed to preserving the rich history of these great people and organizations by constructing a virtual hall of fame free to the general public.
Thank you for taking the time to visit our website. The International Green Industry Hall of Fame welcomes you, your business and your family. Our fragile eco-system is a gift, which we must take seriously and begin to preserve it for future generations. Over the past century, our planet has experienced more pollution and human-inflicted damage than any time in history. Conversely, humankind has also recognized the need to recycle, reuse, renew and rethink, which are all required to sustain our fragile eco-system. There is evidence worldwide that countries, cities, governments, and world organizations are beginning to have a positive impact on the eco-system through the efforts of individuals, corporations, and governments.
This organization exists for others to hear those stories
of excellence in industry.
Thanks again for your interest and support
Sam Geil, Founder
International Green Industry Hall of Fame
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The International Green Industry Hall of Fame Board of Directors is comprised of highly dedicated volunteers who are passionate for our mission.
Katerina is a graduate from Fresno State University with a degree in Business Management. She has returned to obtain her Masters in Business Administration.
Growing up in the foothills of California by Yosemite National Park was the start of her love with the outdoors and caring about the environment. She currently works as a Guide in Yosemite, and loves to share her love of the environment with people from around the world by discussing the history, nature and precious landscape that is the Sierra Nevada mountains. She has a special connection to the outdoors and loves exploring the wilderness whether it be hiking, camping and landscape painting. After serving IGIHOF as a volunteer intern during 2020, She is excited to to be part of the Board and work with IGIHOF going forward.
Sam is the Founder & Chairman of the Board of Directors for IGIHOF. Board Chair of Geil Enterprises, Inc. (GEI) a Fresno, CA based company serving the Industrial Services market. He joined GEI in 2004 and led several initiatives including “Geil Green” focused on sustainability, the Geil Green Brand listed below, and 100% Employee Owned Company (ESOP).
In September 2014, Sam launched Geil Consulting specializing in strategic planning, mentoring and board governance and has developed the “Business Sustainability” model for organizations wishing to integrate sustainability throughout the enterprise.
Sam’s involvement in the Green Industry began during his tenure with Grundfos Pumps and continued at Geil Enterprises Inc. with the acquisition of A-MAZ Cleaning Products. In May of 2007, Sam was a guest of California Governor Schwarzenegger, to participate in the Pacific Economic Summit in Vancouver, British Columbia representing green industries in California.
Sam is a graduate of San Jose State University-School of Business and attended Executive Programs at both the University of Southern California and the Kellogg School of Business. Additionally, Mr. Geil is a Certified Green Build Professional.
Craig School of Business
Renee Chu-Jacoby, is a Social Entrepreneur, Business Strategist, and Management Instructor. In 2002, she cofounded Jacoby Enterprises, a consultancy specializing in business start-ups, organizational development, and alternative education. Renee is also a Business Management Lecturer/Instructor at the Craig School of Business - CSU Fresno. Her professional passion is in supporting organizations, purpose-oriented groups, individuals, and families in realizing their full potential. She holds special interest in assisting businesses in adopting social platforms that align with aspects of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. Renee completed her Bachelors in Business Administration with an emphasis in Organizational Development and Leadership from Fresno Pacific University, in addition to extensive coursework in Management with a specialization in Manufacturing and Retailing for the Apparel Industry completed at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. Additionally, she holds a MBA from the Craig School of Business, CSU Fresno.
Charlie Harris has been with IGIHOF since 2014 and has served as Treasurer and Vice President. He is the Co-Founder of Life Flower, LLC, a company that provides high tech and holistic solutions for plants, food, energy, waste, and water. Life Flower focuses on ecosystem solutions and regenerative farming for smarter communities. He has studied architecture and the environment at UC Santa Barbara and is a certified Green Building and Sustainable Designer. Charlie served as the intern president for the Green2Gold Incubator where he led grant writing and business planning. He also worked for the city of Fresno, in the long range planning department where he co-authored the economic and healthy communities’ working papers. Charlie aspires to push our economy to a more eco-friendly and resource based economy through smart architecture, recycling, farming, energy, holistic health, and social investment. Charlie also enjoys attending community events and supports anything that encompasses positive collaborations with people and our planet.
Cypress Systems, Inc.
Roland Geiger is the customer relations and operations manager at Cypress Systems, Inc.—a biotech company that pioneered and developed natural food forms of minerals that they have supplied to health supplement manufacturers globally since 1995. He believes sustainability is a partnership with nature, and the long-term health of people and the planet depends upon
businesses and individuals aligning with nature. He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration with an emphasis in organizational development and leadership from Fresno Pacific University and has owned and managed four small businesses. He is a member of the board of directors for the Eco Village Project of Fresno and is actively involved in community
development through the Fresno-Madera Continuum of Care (FMCoC) and Wings Advocacy – Fresno, whose services he is working to integrate into the eco villages of Fresno.
Institute for Family Business
Craig School of Business
Fernando Parra is the Director of the Institute for Family Business and an Assistant Professor of Accountancy at Fresno State. Fernando's educational journey has enabled him to have a meaningful impact on developing the next generation of business leaders. He obtained a Ph.D. in International Business with a focus on Information Systems and a Graduate Certificate in Accounting from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP).
Dr. Parra previously served as a Coordinator for the Southwest Pollution Prevention Center, funded by the EPA, to provide informational resources to businesses in their efforts to reduce, eliminate, and prevent pollution at its source. As a private practitioner, he has also played a key role in supporting small to medium-sized businesses with enterprise software solutions in the medical, retail and legal industries.
Dr. Parra is honored to have served on several boards, including President of the Information Systems Doctoral Students Association which promotes diversity in business schools and supports future professors of Hispanic, African American, and Native American heritage
The IGIHOF advisory board supports our mission by providing strategic guidance to the Board of Directors to sustain our international impact.
Michael Ben-Eli's work involving the application of cybernetics and systems thinking to various management-related settings is considered groundbreaking, as are his acclaimed Five Sustainability Principles. He was an associate of R.Buckminster Fuller, with whom he researched advanced structural systems as well as conflicts related to the management of global resources and technologies. Today, Mr. Ben-Eli focuses primarily on issues related to sustainability and sustainable development.
In 1999, when Sam Geil visited Lake Managua, in Nicaragua, not only did he see a contaminated, polluted body of water but an opportunity to affect change and help shape the green, sustainability movement. Lake Managua is one of the most polluted lakes in the world, with a significant num-
ber of people who live on or near the lake expected to survive utilizing this lake as their only source of water. During his tenure with Grundfos Pumps, Sam learned a lot about conservation and recirculation of water, which peaked his interest in the green industry even more.
After joining the family business, Geil Enterprises, Sam knew he had the opportunity to help make Janitorial Inc, and Valley Security & Alarm more environmentally friendly. Geil Enterprises developed a Green program (Geil Green) and significantly reduced their carbon footprint while supplying their clients with Green products and services. But Sam wanted to do more.
After attending professional Green Industry conferences throughout the United States, Sam realized that one thing was glaringly missing from all the conventions, conferences, exhibits and magazine articles; recognition and education on an international level. Those who were fortunate enough to live on the west coast, in the center of the Green movement, were reminded to be environmentally conscience on a daily basis. Cities such as San Francisco and Portland have become the advocacy centers of the green movement,
but what about the rest of the world? Sam wondered how to spread the word about breakthroughs, innovations and achievements in
Green technologies and discoveries? And when were these pioneers going to receive the recognition they so obviously deserved? Then it
came to him.
His vision was to form an International Green Industry Hall of Fame
(IGIHOF), creating a non-profit organization focused on recognizing individuals and organizations dedicated to reducing their carbon footprint and improving the quality of life worldwide. To educate
and influence the next generation of world citizens about the eco-challenges we have today and in the future. This is the footprint and legacy that Sam Geil, Green Champion leaves us with and it is one
big shoe to fill. I will take that challenge, will you?
Chief Sustainability Officer of ShadesofGreen.com
Ellen is considered a pioneer in helping consumers improve how they live by making healthier, sustainable product choices. She brings over 40 years of experience in the field of interpretive planning/design/management, sustainable living, and strategic business development to her current position as CSO of ShadesofGreen.com.
Beginning with exhibit planning and design in 1978, her varied skills and interests led to work with design firms and non-profit organizations. In 1988 she established her own firm, E.B. Designworks Inc.
Ellen collaborated with teams to develop strategic plans and educational materials for both businesses and individual projects, educational programs and exhibits for museums, zoos and aquariums. Given her personal passion for sustainability, in1999 Ellen founded Livingreen, a series of educational retail centers in Southern California, promoting environmental education and the incorporation of sustainable materials and practices into daily life.
Her varied experiences involved her in green design/build projects at various stages of production. In response to working with the full spectrum of construction materials, and concerns about health from exposure to them, Ellen started Livingreen to promote and sell the best alternatives to standard building and finish materials. Open to both the trades and homeowners, Livingreen provided products and materials to reduce harmful environmental impact and enhance health in the home and workplace.
To help customers make smarter, well-informed decisions about the level of sustainability in these products, Ellen created a product evaluation program called Shades of Green. Over the years this user-friendly system has evolved into a more sophisticated program that allows products from various manufacturers and artisans to be evaluated for their degree of health and sustainability in five product life stages, using hundreds of questions and thousands of data points to assess and compare products.
With the closing of the Livingreen brick and mortar stores, Ellen began a new chapter, working for her god-daughter Angela Wade. Angela has now launched the ecommerce version of Livingreen, putting the Shades of Green Product Evaluation Program front and center in a sustainable ecommerce platform.
President, Bowman Change, Inc.
Tom Bowman is an IGIHOF inductee who helps government agencies, cultural institutions, utility companies and other organizations improve public engagement on health and environmental issues, and helps businesses reap the benefits of making social and environmental change central to their missions. He is founder of the exhibition design firm Bowman Design Group and founder and president of the communications consultancy Bowman Change, Inc. Under his leadership, Bowman
Design Group received a Cool California Small Business of the Year Award for demonstrating a repeatable model for decarbonizing operations while saving money. The firm also earned APEX/ASTM and the international FAMAB sustainability certifications for the exhibition industry. Bowman is author of The Green Edge and a frequent public speaker who has appeared on NPR’s Marketplace, CNN’s Local Edition and in leading publications such as Time, the New York Times, Science, Yale Environment 360 and others.
SNAPSHOT Leadership, Inc.
Peter Gray is an accomplished Senior Executive Leader, who has served within organizations across various industries around the world. He partners with leaders to explore, expand, and align their business strategies to talent strategies.
With 20+ years of experience as an accountability coach, operations analyst, and skilled change agent, Peter supports initiatives with customized training, development, and facilitation solutions.
After serving 15 years as Director of Customized Training and then VP of Operations at The Ken Blanchard Companies, Peter launched SNAPSHOT Leadership Inc., where he continues to work with leaders and their teams, at all levels in organizations, enhancing personal, professional and operational performance.
He is passionate about developing self-and-other awareness skills as a path to building a productive and resilient mindset. One client described their experience working with Peter as “an authentic and insightful partnership that was innovative, action-oriented, and very ultimately, very impactful.”
Peter is also passionate about the arts and education, and launched LifeCoaching4Kids.org, and expanded Microloans4Mothers.org. He currently sits as an Advisory Board Member on BBVA Bank/San Diego and the Beautiful Dying Expo.org
KOR Product Design
Jim Kor graduated as a Mechanical Engineer from the University of Manitoba in 1974.
After a decade of designing farm machinery for Winnipeg manufacturers, including
tractors, swathers, and combines (for Versatile and CI), Jim Kor started his own
design firm. KOR Product Design is now an international design consultancy with
clients in Canada, the USA, and Europe. KOR’s main thrust is combining
Engineering and Industrial Design into a unified design. KOR has worked within
various industries, including agricultural machinery, city and inter-city buses,
commercial swimming pools, automotive, and aerospace. KOR’s designed products
are mass-produced and reach world markets. KOR’s self-initiated research projects
have been at the forefront of sustainable transportation and energy efficiency, and
have been presented at conferences, schools, and universities in North America and Europe. KOR’s third vehicle project, an environmental car called Urbee, initiated
the formation of a new company called KOR Ecologic, aimed at developing and
commercializing this unique roadworthy vehicle, worldwide. Jim Kor was born in
Amsterdam, lived in Indonesia, and moved to Canada when he was seven. He lives
there now, is married, has two teenage boys, a dog, and 3 cats.
In 2007 Michael joined a company called REC Solar, on the first day the CEO finished the orientation with a group viewing of Al Gore’s groundbreaking documentary “An Inconvenient Truth”. Over the following years Michael helped 300+ homeowners switch to Solar energy for their homes, then moved into management and has been leading Sales teams ever since. Under Michaels leadership, in 2021 his teams executed Sales and Install volume in excess of 30MWs in Northern and Central California. Through this journey Michael has found a passion for learning about and creating real lasting change on Environmental challenges. He practices what he preaches by having a Solar Powered home and driving an fully electric vehicle with no emissions. Michael believes that it is critical for our behavior to rapidly change toward eliminating emissions from Transportation, Energy Production and generally all aspects of our lives. Moreover he believes that there are real solutions that can accomplish these objectives while also creating positive economic activity in all sectors. With this foundation Michael enthusiastically joined the IGIHOF BOD in 2018 and continues to be involved on the Advisory Board today. IGIHOF provides a unique platform to recognize, educate and promote green industry businesses and leaders. Our mission is to give them a meaningful boost toward their efforts as well as to encourage positive dialogue which results in new opportunities to drive impactful changes in our society. Thank you for visiting our site and we look forward to partnering with you to create solutions that empower lasting impacts in our global effort to reverse and control global warming, reduce pollution and overall leave this world better than we found it.
CEO of LEHR Incorporated
Captain Bernardo Herzer is Founder and CEO of LEHR Incorporated, where he developed, patented, and commercialized the use of eco-friendly propane canisters for small engines. Previously he was a ship captain, where he became aware of the devastating impact of commercial fishing on marine ecosystems and also discovered the environmental benefit of utilizing propane over gasoline. Observing environmental destruction inspired him to commit his career to finding more environmentally-friendly solutions for retail and commercial products.
California Association of Resource Conservation Districts
Nancy Wahl-Scheurich is an eco-entrepreneur, leveraging her passion for sustainability and social justice with 20+ years of international marketing, business development, product management, and project management to make positive environmental and social impacts through her work. She is now part of the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts, putting that energy into supporting California's resource conservation districts as they work with stakeholders to protect California's water, soil, wildlife habitat, and other natural resources.
Before joining CARCD, she co-founded Millennium Microgrid, a social enterprise bringing clean energy to rural off-grid communities in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prior to Millennium Microgrid, she founded LittleFootprint Lighting in 2009 with the goal of bringing to market THE most environmentally friendly task light available. The award-winning HeronLED Personal Task Light was the only ENERGY STAR certified LED desk lamp made in the USA from recycled e-waste, with a sleek design that customers loved.
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