Category Archives: 3BL Media

Taproot Foundation Announces Winners of Taproot’s MAKE IT MATTER Challenge

Panel of judges, including LinkedIn executive chairman and co-founder Reid Hoffman, evaluated four finalist ideas, chose two to connect thousands of nonprofits to quality pro bono professional resources

SOURCE: Taproot Foundation


MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIF., September 8, 2014 /3BL Media/ – Today, Taproot Foundation announced two winners of Taproot’s MAKE IT MATTER Challenge, an innovation challenge launched earlier this summer aimed at securing ideas to connect thousands of nonprofits to quality pro bono resources.

Four finalists selected from more than 150 entries presented their ideas on Friday, Sept 5 at LinkedIn’s Mountain View headquarters to a panel of five esteemed judges, including LinkedIn’s executive chairman and co-founder Reid Hoffman and Taproot President and CEO Liz Hamburg. The two winning teams were:

  • The Pro Bono Challenge Grant (Karen McCord)

    • What if a nonprofit could get a critical pro bono project AND funding to support their organization? With a Pro Bono Challenge Grant, foundation will encourage nonprofits to use more pro bono to increase the capacity of their organization.
  • Bona Fide Consulting Corps (Robert Cunningham, Heeyeon Park, and Joshua Winata)

    • Many nonprofits want to use pro bono, but good pro bono requires an investment of staff time, and many nonprofits aren’t sure where to start. A fellow in the Bona Fide Consulting Corps would work alongside nonprofit employees to help assess organizational need and plug in pro bono resources where the organization can best use them.

The challenge, sponsored by LinkedIn and personally by Hoffman, awarded $10,000 to each winning team and an additional $5,000 to donate to a nonprofit of each team’s choice.

“Taproot is a great leader in the field of pro bono, and The Make it Matter Challenge itself demonstrates the potential for professional skilled volunteering,” said Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn executive chairman and co-founder. “We were honored by the number of people who participated. From proposals for deploying technology in a scalable way to drive social change, to managerial improvements and ideas for increasing connectivity in the networked world, in fact, all of the presenting teams were winners.”

Taproot Foundation President and CEO Liz Hamburg added, “All four of the finalists had amazing ideas to connect more nonprofits to pro bono. While it was hard to choose, each of our two winning teams showed the greatest potential to scale those connections and ensure the pro bono that happens is truly high quality. We’re energized by all of the great thinking, creativity, and innovative ideas that have the potential for massive impact.”

Since September 2013, more than two million LinkedIn members have indicated their interest in giving their time and talent a nonprofit. As a further sign of the growing drive to do pro bono, 82% of surveyed LinkedIn members said they want to volunteer their time and skills.

Meanwhile, Taproot has found that 92% of nonprofits want more, high-quality pro bono in areas such as marketing, IT, and HR. The core need now is to enable more nonprofits to engage those professionals in service.

The judges determined the two winning entries would best fill that need and be able to connect high-performing nonprofits to an exceptional market of engaged and motivated professionals willing to provide pro bono services.

The presiding judges were:

For more information about the Challenge, visit:

About Taproot Foundation

Since 2001, Taproot Foundation has proven that pro bono service is a viable and reliable tool for strengthening nonprofit organizations. Today, Taproot continues to be a national leader and seeks to build a pro bono marketplace that, like philanthropy, is large, accessible, professional and transparent. By taking lessons learned from our award-winning Service Grant Program and applying them to our innovative new program areas, we work to stimulate the supply of pro bono resources through our corporate Advisory Services practice, as well as demand for these services by giving nonprofits the tools and training that sets them up for successful pro bono engagements. Our work has evolved to include thought leadership and international field-building, convening global leaders in the social sector to guide the design and direction of the pro bono movement while focusing on infusing a pro bono ethic into business professions, professional schools, companies and nonprofits in communities across the country and around the world. Visit

About Pro Bono Service

Pro bono—short for pro bono publico,”for the public good”—refers to professional services delivered without expectation of a fee to organizations serving the social good. It is both a form of support for community organizations as well as an increasingly core part of the ethic of business professionals from design to HR and technology, who believe that high-quality professional services are too important to only be available to those who can afford them.


Media Contact:

Adam Ukman

Taproot Foundation

Ph: 312-623-4265


Tweet me: .@taprootfound announces winners of #MakeItMatter Challenge

KEYWORDS: Awards and Recognition, pro bono, Nonprofits, linkedin, Challenge, Taproot, Taproot Foundation, csr, foundation, make it matter

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World Water Week

SOURCE: Monsanto


By Gabriela Burian
Global Lead, Sustainable Agriculture Environment

Together with my family, our dog and several of my colleagues, I assisted with cleaning up the Meramec River and vicinity in St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.A., last week. One week later and more than 4,500 miles away from that river, I find myself in Stockholm, Sweden – again for water.

Most of the conversations that took place while cleaning in and around the Meramec River last week were related to workshops we are having in St. Louis. Workshops that focus on the challenge of cleaning what is already needed to survive and rethinking systems toward a world that collectively conserves more and, beyond that, reuses the waste of the so-called “circular economy.” We did some great work while having great conversations surrounding action.

This week, Stockholm becomes “the water capital of the world” as more than 4,000 people from the “water world” – NGOs, governments, academia and businesses from different countries – all convene at World Water Week in Stockholm.

I’m happy to report that this week we’re “walking the talk.” When we arrived, we received reusable bottles for water as well as a card for public transportation (which is electric!). And all together at the conference center, we’ve been working to rethink process, actions and systems as a society.

I’m also extremely proud to be here representing Monsanto and the agriculture sector. There’s a lot to be done and being part of the dialogue is crucial. But being part of the dialogue is only part of solution. Also important is evaluating systems and working to find new solutions. This is what our team at Monsanto and our partners are doing – we are looking for solution that can help to feed more than 7 billion people today and another 2 billion people by 2050, while using less water than we are using for agriculture now.

As we work on solutions that help produce nutritious and delicious food for our kids while preserving natural resources, we need to be better prepared. And this is why capacity building is so important. Paradigm shift needs to happen in order to make the necessary changes.

Across Monsanto and with our partners we’re proud to see projects focusing on water, including some related to the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Business Ecosystems Training, which are becoming reality in countries such as Brazil, India, Argentina, Peru, Mexico, Netherlands and USA. It’s great to see more employees interested to better understand the interface between business and ecosystems.

Through our partnership with the WBCSD, its members and others, Monsanto advocates for sustainable agriculture. We also were the first agriculture company to sign WBCSD’s Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) pledge. This is a simple action that reinforces our long-standing commitment to ensuring safe water, sanitation and hygiene for employees. With the WBCSD, we hope others will make this commitment and continue to improve lives.

Through people, process, solutions and partnership we’re looking for more sustainable solutions to help address the new challenges that our society is facing through collective action.

From more crop per drop (while preserving the water quality) to the call for action in agriculture, changes are starting to happen. But we have to do more.

We can make an incredible environmental difference, but we can’t do it alone. We must work together. As World Water Week comes to a close, I encourage you to continue working to implement solutions for best water practices and share learning with others – at home and at work.

Water is the world’s most precious resource. We need it to survive. We need it to thrive. We must act!

Image Credit: Beyond the Rows Blog

Tweet me: New Beyond the Rows post on World Water Week from @Monsantoco #wwweek #agriculture

Contact Info:

Billy Brennan

KEYWORDS: Environment and Climate Change, Conservation, Monsanto, Beyond the Rows, World Water Week, agriculture, World Business Council for Sustainable Development, Business Ecosystems, Water Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)

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UN Expert Takes Global Sustainable Development Online

by Vikas Vij

SOURCE: Justmeans


The solution to the world’s biggest sustainability challenges of climate change, poverty, hunger and disease begins with global awareness, education and a strong analytical foundation. Delivering free online education and engaging with millions of students around the world through innovative online platforms may be one of the most cost-effective, practical and democratic ways to achieve this goal.

Jeffrey Sachs, Director of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network, an organization comprised of hundreds of universities and think tanks created by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, is leveraging his position to deal with sustainable development through global online education.

To continue reading, click here

Image Credit: Flickr via Khalid Albaih

Vikas is a staff writer for the Sustainable Development news and editorial section on Justmeans. He is an MBA with 20 years of managerial and entrepreneurial experience and global travel. He is the author of “The Power of Money” (Scholars, 2003), a book that presents a revolutionary monetary economic theory on poverty alleviation in the developing world. Vikas is also the official writer for an international social project for developing nations “Decisions for Life” run in collaboration between the ILO, the University of Amsterdam and the Indian Institute of Management.

Tweet me: UN expert believes the future of global #sustainable development lies in online education – via @Justmeans

KEYWORDS: Technology, Education, Justmeans, United Nations’ Sustainable Development Solutions Network, sustainability, United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, sustainable development, EdCast, online education

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The Pluto Project: Connected Cars & Smart Cities to the Rescue



In 2010, U.S. drivers used 170 billion gallons of gasoline, enough to drive about 3 trillion miles—the equivalent of about one thousand trips to Pluto. That mobility was unprecedented, but those gas-guzzling miles also meant 1.7 billion metric tons of harmful carbon dioxide were spewed into our atmosphere.

If we are going to achieve the President’s clean energy and climate goals, those numbers are going to have to come down. Our trips to Pluto will need to become more sustainable.

The good news is that is going to be possible.  Innovations in intelligent transportation systems (ITS) and information and communications technology (ICT) will increasingly offer transformational ways in which we can make the U.S. transportation systems more efficient, less costly, and more environmentally friendly. A win-win for consumers and for sustainability.

Our event last Thursday, “Accelerating Sustainability: Demonstrating the Benefits of Connected Cars” provided a compelling snapshot into this coming revolution.

Hosted by the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI), it brought together representatives from the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), the Center for Clean Energy Innovation (CCEI), and the Digital Energy and Sustainability Solutions Campaign (DESCC).

Featured was a new report from ITS America, funded by DESSC, which can be viewed here. Presenting the baseline sustainability impact of 16 emerging transportation technologies, the report projects a 2-4% cut in oil consumption – and in concomitant carbon dioxide emissions – per year as these smart technologies move into our cars, onto our roads and in our cities.

The event discussion impressed upon me the importance of two follow-on activities:

  • Further Quantification. DESSC and ITS America took on this report with the realization that almost no research had been conducted to quantify the sustainability benefits of connected vehicles. The report is thus intended as a foundation to stimulate far more quantification in this area—a start to trying to put numbers to an issue that doesn’t have numbers. We intentionally chose the methodology employed so that it can be replicated and augmented, with further analyses hopefully to come on additional technologies; transportation modes (e.g., shipping and ports, aircraft and air cargo); sustainability advances; and, geographies (e.g., conduct a similar study in China).
  • Enhanced Policy. The report conservatively assumes a gradual diffusion of these technologies. Our discussion included the assertion that directed government policies could double or triple the benefits that accrue.  Some policy examples that come to mind:
    • Collaboration: Federal, state, and local governments have established mechanisms for ensuring collaboration within the highway community. These mechanisms need to expand to ensure that the ICT industry is included in the conversation. Also, more regional and local pilot and demonstration projects are critical to engage more municipalities in these technologies and the benefits they generate.
    • Innovation:The respective development cycles of the transportation community and those of Silicon Valley have historically traveled at very different speeds. The transportation community is going to have to adjust, though, to tech’s accelerated innovation: increased research partnership, featuring pilots; willingness of regulatory bodies to accept change and some risk; and, regulatory and policy predictability.
    • Surface transportation reauthorization: The current transportation reauthorization only extends through May 2015. We need the Congress to pass a multi-year bill with adequate funding for these efforts. Pilots for smart city deployments are a cost-effective tool that Congress should include in the bill.
    • Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) credits: There are significant credits afforded to engine efficiency, but not to intelligent transportation solutions that also reduce carbon emissions. This is challenging, as quantification is hard, but regardless, government emission reduction credits and incentives should adjust to recognize and encourage these carbon and cost reduction approaches.
    • Government Procurement: Government can play a significant role as an early adopter of these technologies given the fact that it operates the largest fleet of vehicles. Pilot programs would constitute an inexpensive but effective means for moving the marketplace more quickly.
    • Spectrum: Dedicated short-range communication (DSRC) has the potential to provide tremendous benefits for connected vehicles and safety, but Wi-Fi use in this bandwidth also helps consumers meet other needs for connected devices. Meeting our nation’s spectrum demand will require smart spectrum policy that maximizes efficient use of spectrum, and the ICT and auto communities need to collaborate on technical solutions. The relevant federal agencies should continue facilitating technical work and encouraging engineers to develop and test solutions that permit Wi-Fi use of spectrum while ensuring there is no harmful interference to DSRC. We must ensure that deployment is predicated on testing, and with the certainty that safety is protected.

I understand that this is an ambitious endeavor, but it’s also within our reach. But as Dean Garfield noted during the event, perhaps we can make this our Pluto Project.

This post originally appeared on the Information Technology Industry Council Policy Blog.

Tweet me: .@ConnectToGood “The Pluto Project: Connected Cars & Smart Cities to the Rescue” #ATTImpact

KEYWORDS: Energy, att, gasoline, ITIC, Pluto Project, Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), Center for Clean Energy Innovation (CCEI), Digital Energy and Sustainability Solutions Campaign (DESCC)

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Volkswagen Takes Holistic Approach to E-Mobility with Launch for Ultra Low Carbon Car

Volkswagen partners with 3Degrees® to purchase carbon offsets in California and around the United States to cover certain greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with 2015 e-Golf models

SOURCE: Volkswagen Group


  • Volkswagen partners with 3Degrees® to purchase carbon offsets in California and around the United States to cover certain greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with 2015 e-Golf models
  • SunPower® selected as VW’s official solar energy partner, providing eligible e-Golf® owners the opportunity to achieve the electricity savings and power management capabilities of its high performance solar solutions
  • Bosch Automotive Service Solutions® selected as VW’s preferred home-charging and installation services provider
  • ChargePoint® selected to provide charging stations to VW dealer network and to provide U.S. e-Golf owners access to consumers to over 18,000 charging stations nationwide


NEW ORLEANS, September 4, 2014 /3BL Media/ – Volkswagen of America, Inc., rolled out plans for a holistic approach to e-mobility at the Society of Environmental Journalists Annual Conference. Starting with the launch of the zero-tailpipe emissions 2015 e-Golf model, Volkswagen will invest in carbon reduction projects to offset emissions created from e-Golf production and distribution, and up to approximately 36,000 miles of driving. Volkswagen also named SunPower as the official solar energy partner power provider. Through these innovative collaborations, Volkswagen will be one of the first high-volume manufacturers to deliver a truly holistic approach to ultra-low-carbon mobility. The 2015 e-Golf will go on sale later this year at participating dealerships in select states.

To help determine its carbon offset projects, Volkswagen has teamed with 3Degrees, a renewable energy and carbon offset services provider. The partnership brings new meaning to the idea of an ultra-low carbon car. By investing in carbon reduction programs, Volkswagen will offset the e-Golf’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that result from its production, distribution and from the estimated emissions produced from keeping the vehicle charged through the initial 36,000 miles of the vehicle’s life. Volkswagen of America has included carbon reduction efforts in California and in Texas, with projects geared towards forestry conservation and landfill gas capture.

“Volkswagen feels it is important to look beyond the benefits of driving a vehicle without tailpipe emissions and to take a holistic approach to e-mobility,” said Joerg Sommer, vice president of product marketing, Volkswagen of America. “The carbon offset program is a key element of Volkswagen’s holistic approach to e-Mobility.  e-Golf customers can drive the vehicle confidently, knowing Volkswagen is addressing the vehicle’s environmental impacts through many stages of its lifecycle from production, distribution and charging.”

Volkswagen-supported projects include: 

Garcia River Forestry Project
The Garcia River Conservation-Based Forest Management Project, located in Mendocino County, Calif., protects and preserves a 24,000-acre native redwood forest, increasing carbon sequestration and storage, while also helping to restore the natural wildlife habitat. Emission reductions produced by the project are verified by an approved third party and registered with the Climate Action Reserve. More information on the project can be found at:

Big River and Salmon Creek Forests
The Big River and Salmon Creek Forests, located in Mendocino County, Calif., were subject historically to land fragmentation and unsustainable logging practices. In an effort to protect the native redwood and Douglas fir forest, the land is now protected through a 16,000-acre land purchase, which was funded in part by the carbon offsets it offers to organizations like Volkswagen.  Emission reductions produced by the project are verified by an approved third party and registered with the Climate Action Reserve. More information on the project can be found at:

McKinney Landfill
The McKinney Landfill project, based at a closed landfill in McKinney, Texas, works to capture gases that would otherwise be emitted into the atmosphere from anaerobic decomposition within the landfill. Benefits from the capture include odor reduction, improved water quality and future distributed renewable energy production. The sale of carbon offsets supports the gas collection and flaring project. The emission reductions are validated, verified and registered using the Climate Action Reserve’s Landfill Project Protocol. More information on the project can be found at:

“Volkswagen is showing leadership by including carbon offsets standard with this e-Golf electric vehicle,” said Steve McDougal, President of 3Degrees. “As more people choose low and no emission cars, Volkswagen is making it possible – and easy – to think comprehensively about the greenhouse gas emissions profile of a vehicle.”

Providing Solar Energy Solutions, Partnering with SunPower

As part of Volkswagen’s efforts to deliver an ultra-low-carbon car, the company is working with SunPower to provide qualified U.S. Volkswagen e-Golf customers the opportunity to install a high performance SunPower solar system. A residential SunPower system can help customers save on annual household electricity costs as well as power their electric vehicle, reducing overall cost of ownership.

Volkswagen Group of America is SunPower’s first automotive partner whose customers will receive premier access to an energy storage solution from SunPower for a limited time once it becomes commercially available. Combining solar with energy storage will help provide homeowners peace-of-mind and opportunity to access back-up power during a power outage.

Charging Solutions

Volkswagen’s holistic approach to e-mobility also extends to the ownership experience. The company recently announced that Bosch Automotive Service Solutions will serve as a charging station and installation services partner for the e-Golf. Bosch® will provide a 240-volt charging unit, the Power Max® charging station, as well as full-service installation for qualified e-Golf drivers. The charging station and installation will be offered at highly competitive prices to e-Golf customers.

Additionally, Volkswagen has selected ChargePoint® to complete the driver experience by providing all authorized e-Golf dealerships with VW-branded charging stations and by giving e-Golf drivers access to the largest network of public EV charging stations. As a result, e-Golf drivers will have access to over 18,000 ChargePoint stations around the United States, in addition to those stations installed at authorized VW dealerships. All e-Golf drivers will also get access to the ChargePoint mobile app, which will help them navigate to ChargePoint stations, see real-time status updates relating to ChargePoint stations and start charging sessions. 


About Volkswagen of America, Inc.
Founded in 1955, Volkswagen of America, Inc., an operating unit of Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (VWoA), is headquartered in Herndon, Virginia. It is a subsidiary of Volkswagen AG, headquartered in Wolfsburg, Germany. VWoA’s operations in the United States include research and development, parts and vehicle processing, parts distribution centers, sales, marketing and service offices, financial service centers, and its state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The Volkswagen Group is one of the world’s largest producers of passenger cars and Europe’s largest automaker. VWoA sells the Beetle, Beetle Convertible, Eos, Golf, GTI, Jetta, Jetta SportWagen, Passat, CC, Tiguan and Touareg vehicles through approximately 640 independent U.S. dealers.

About 3Degrees
3Degrees provides renewable energy certificates and carbon offsets to Fortune 500® companies, green building firms, and other organizations committed to sustainability. In addition, 3Degrees partners with utilities across the nation to offer customized green power options to approximately 25 million customers. A six-time winner of the DOE/EPA Green Power Supplier of the Year Award and certified B Corporation, 3Degrees is headquartered in San Francisco, California, with regional offices throughout the U.S.  To learn more, visit

About SunPower
SunPower (NASDAQ: SPWR) designs, manufactures and delivers the highest efficiency, highest reliability solar panels and systems available today. Residential, business, government and utility customers rely on the company’s quarter century of experience and guaranteed performance to provide maximum return on investment throughout the life of the solar system. Headquartered in San Jose, Calif., SunPower has offices in North America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia. For more information, visit

About Bosch
In the U.S., Canada and Mexico, the Bosch Group manufactures and markets automotive original equipment and aftermarket solutions, industrial drives and control technology, power tools, security and communication systems, packaging technology, thermotechnology, household appliances, healthcare telemedicine and software solutions. Having established a regional presence in 1906, Bosch employs 24,600 associates in more than 100 locations, with consolidated sales of $10.4 billion in 2013. For more information, visit, and


This press release and images are available at Follow us @VWNews: #VWTDI, #VWThinkBlue.


Tweet me: Volkswagen Takes Holistic Approach to E-Mobility with Launch for Ultra Low Carbon Car #SEJ2014

KEYWORDS: Environment and Climate Change, Energy, Volkswagen, VW Group, Volkswagen of America, Society of Environmental Journalists Annual Conference, sunpower, 3Degrees


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California Set to Become the First U.S. State without Disposable Plastic Bags

by Vikas Vij

SOURCE: Justmeans


Ocean debris worldwide kills at least one million seabirds and 100,000 mammals every year. Plastic is the single largest source of ocean litter. Americans dispose of about 100 billion plastic shopping bags each year. This also involves the use of at least 12 million barrels of oil in their production. According to the EPA, less than five percent of plastic grocery bags are recycled in the U.S.

California State Legislature has taken a bold step to curb this menace by passing a bill that imposes a statewide ban on disposable plastic bags. If signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, this legislation would make California the first state in the country that will become free of retail plastic bags. The ban will prohibit California grocery stores, pharmacies, liquor stores and other businesses from providing the common plastic bags to customers.

To continue reading, click here

Image Credit: Flickr via PinkMoose

Vikas is a staff writer for the Sustainable Development news and editorial section on Justmeans. He is an MBA with 20 years of managerial and entrepreneurial experience and global travel. He is the author of “The Power of Money” (Scholars, 2003), a book that presents a revolutionary monetary economic theory on poverty alleviation in the developing world. Vikas is also the official writer for an international social project for developing nations “Decisions for Life” run in collaboration between the ILO, the University of Amsterdam and the Indian Institute of Management. 

Tweet me: #California State Legislature passes bill to impose statewide ban on disposable #plasticbags – via @Justmeans

KEYWORDS: Ethical Production and Consumption, Environmental Policy, EPA, California, Plastic bags, reusable bags, Californians Against Waste, California Grocers Association

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Buckle Up, Teens and Parents, Three Hands-On Toyota TeenDrive365 Events Coming to Town

Registration Now Open for Free Behind-The-Wheel Safe Driving Programs in Mississippi, Michigan and Hawaii

SOURCE: Toyota


TORRANCE, CALIF., September 3, 2014 /3BL Media/  –  Parents can help steer their teenage drivers to safety by joining them during Toyota’s 11th year of offering free, driving skills programs. Toyota’s comprehensive TeenDrive365 platform gives families tips and resources for the critical first year of teen driving. The TeenDrive365 teen driver experience will go on the road to Pearl, Mississippi; Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Honolulu, Hawaii to teach defensive driving skills, crash avoidance techniques and the dangers of distracted driving.
Motor vehicle crashes continue to be the leading cause of death among teens. Recognizing that parents play a crucial role in developing habits of their teens behind the wheel, Toyota’s program uniquely requires a parent or guardian to actively participant in the event with the teen. The teen driver experience is open to pre-drivers and new drivers with a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit.
This year’s events will take place in:

  • Pearl, Mississippi on Sept. 27 and 28 at Bass Pro Shops
  • Ann Arbor, Michigan on Oct. 4 and 5 at Washtenaw Community College
  • Honolulu, Hawaii on Nov. 8 and 9 at Aloha Stadium

Registration is required and open now at
“Toyota is committed to bringing parents and teens together to better navigate the important first years on the road,” said Michael Rouse, Toyota’s vice president of diversity, philanthropy and community affairs. “Through this year’s three hands-on safe driving programs around the country, coupled with our online TeenDrive365 resources, we hope to make the roads a little safer for everyone.”
The TeenDrive365 teen driver experience events are two-and-a-half-hour sessions that involve both driving time and classroom discussions. Going beyond what is taught in standard driver education courses, professional instructors cover vehicle maintenance tips, defensive maneuvers and a number of other helpful safe driving techniques. Parents and teens will make mutual driving agreements and learn communication tips to continue at-home learning.
For more than a decade Toyota has provided teen driver safety resources to help drivers conquer the road safely. offers free online teen safety resources to parents, teens, educators and schools.

Toyota, the world’s top automaker and creator of the Prius, is committed to building vehicles for the way people live through our Toyota, Lexus and Scion brands.  Over the past 50 years, we’ve built more than 25 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants and directly employ more than 40,000 people.  Our 1,800 North American dealerships sold more than 2.5 million cars and trucks in 2013 – and about 80 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 20 years are still on the road today. 
Toyota partners with philanthropic organizations across the country, with a focus on education, safety and the environment.  As part of this commitment, we share the company’s extensive know-how garnered from building great cars and trucks to help community organizations and other nonprofits expand their ability to do good. To date, Toyota has contributed more than $700 million to nonprofits in the U.S.  For more information about Toyota, visit

Media Contacts

Rebecca Lee
Golin for Toyota

Tweet me: Steer your teenage drivers to safety @Toyota #TeenDrive365

KEYWORDS: Volunteerism & Community Engagement, TeenDrive365, teen driving program, tde, teen driver program, Toyota, driving expectations


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CSX and The Conservation Fund Improve Access to Healthy Food for Youth in West Virginia

Voucher program provides access to fresh fruits and vegetables for 5,000 children and families in five counties

SOURCE: CSX Corporation


ARLINGTON, Va., Sept. 3, 2014 /3BL Media/ – In West Virginia, one in five children does not have reliable access to sufficient food – especially healthy food – due to limited financial resources, lack of transportation and other factors. But CSX and The Conservation Fund are working to improve food security in these at-risk communities through a program that provides increased access and funding for healthy foods for hundreds of children and families living below the poverty line in five of the state’s lowest income counties: Calhoun, McDowell, Mingo, Roane and Wirt.CSX, a leading provider of rail-based transportation services, and The Conservation Fund, a national nonprofit dedicated to finding conservation solutions that balance environmental and economic needs, teamed up to provide fresh food vouchers to children that can be redeemed at local farmers markets for fresh fruits and vegetables. 

“Food security is one of the most pressing issues facing our children, and one that directly impacts their overall health and well-being,” said Kris Hoellen, Vice President of Sustainable Programs for The Conservation Fund. “Access to fresh produce with an opportunity to teach children how food goes from the farm to the table gives these children – and their families – the opportunity for a long-term healthy lifestyle. We applaud CSX for investing in the future of West Virginia.”

“West Virginia is an integral part of both the history and future of CSX, and CSX is committed to investing in its neighbors here by delivering information and access to healthy food and nutrition,” said Tori Kaplan, Assistant Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility, CSX. “This partnership with The Conservation Fund supports our mission to help West Virginia communities live greener, healthier and safer lives.”

On August 21, West Virginia Department of Agriculture Communications Director Buddy Davidson visited the Falls River Elementary School mobile farmers market in McDowell County to see firsthand how the voucher program benefits local children and families.

“Food security is a critical issue for many West Virginians, and the West Virginia Department of Agriculture is pleased to be working with CSX and the Conservation Fund to help our citizens eat fresh, healthy, locally grown produce,” said West Virginia Commissioner of Agriculture Walt Helmick. “This is a benefit not just to the participants, but also to our farmers. We have a huge economic opportunity to grow our state’s economy from within by producing more of what we consume.”

Throughout the five counties, the vouchers are being distributed by libraries, elementary schools and summer programs like Energy Express, an award-winning summer reading and nutrition program for children living in West Virginia’s rural and low-income communities. Families in Mingo County will also be able to use the vouchers at a mobile farmers market, which will visit seven communities within the county to help those without access to transportation. In McDowell County, some children will be able to redeem their vouchers right at their school. One thousand children from each county will receive vouchers this summer and fall.

The following farmers markets are already participating in the voucher program:

  • Amma Farmers Market
  • Spencer Farmers Market
  • Calhoun County Farmers Market
  • Grantsville Farmers Market
  • Elizabeth Farmers Market
  • Williamson Farmers Market
  • and 4 elementary schools in McDowell County

Through additional funding from the program, these farmers markets will team up with the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to provide cooking demonstrations and distribute recipes and information on cooking, storing and preparing fresh, seasonal food. This will provide opportunities for kids to sample and become familiar with new foods, so that they can incorporate them into their eating habits and their parents can learn how to prepare and cook healthy food.

Eva Musick with Mingo Diabetes noted: “A child said to me once, ‘I’ve never tried a strawberry.’ We’re hoping to give children here more fun and engaging opportunities to taste a variety of healthy, fresh food with help from CSX and The Conservation Fund.”

This program is part of a broader effort between CSX and The Conservation Fund to improve Americans’ access to fresh, healthy food. More than 23 million Americans across the country have limited or no access to fresh produce, dairy, meats and seafood. One of the contributors to these so-called “food deserts” is the lack of infrastructure to distribute fresh food to markets. Last month, CSX and The Conservation Fund launched a grant program that helps food distributors enhance their delivery capabilities to farmers markets and communities in need. More information and the grant application is available at

With offices in Shepherdstown, The Conservation Fund has become a leader in natural resource protection in West Virginia. The Fund has protected more than 36,400 acres across the state, and its sustainable programs have improved local economies and impacted the lives of thousands of West Virginians, from children to small-business owners. To learn more about The Conservation Fund’s efforts in West Virginia, visit

# # #

A video on the program can be viewed here:

About CSX
CSX, based in Jacksonville, Florida, is a premier transportation company. It provides rail, intermodal and rail-to-truck transload services and solutions to customers across a broad array of markets, including energy, industrial, construction, agricultural, and consumer products. For more than 185 years, CSX has played a critical role in the nation’s economic expansion and industrial development. Its network connects every major metropolitan area in the eastern United States, where nearly two-thirds of the nation’s population resides. It also links more than 240 short-line railroads and more than 70 ocean, river and lake ports with major population centers and small farming towns alike.

CSX is committed to helping communities it serves live healthier, greener, safer lives. The company recognizes the importance for these communities to gain regular access to locally grown, nutrient-rich, fresh food. That’s why CSX is supporting these grants to enable farmers, churches, towns, cities, neighborhoods, and community groups to transport fresh food to people who need it, as part of a healthier lifestyle.

About The Conservation Fund
At The Conservation Fund, we combine a passion for conservation with an entrepreneurial spirit to protect America’s most important lands and waterways for future generations. A hallmark of our work is our deep, unwavering understanding that for conservation solutions to last, they need to make economic sense. We strive to implement strategies that support sustainable economic development, spark cutting-edge conservation and bridge connections between people and the land. Top-ranked, we’re advancing vibrant, healthy communities. 

Melanie Cost, CSX Corporate Communications, 904-359-1702,
Ann Simonelli, The Conservation Fund, 703-908-5809,

Tweet me: .@CSX and @ConservationFun Improve Access to Healthy Food for Youth in West Virginia

KEYWORDS: Volunteerism & Community Engagement, Business & Trade, CSX, The Conservation Fund, healthy food, West Virginia

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