Looking for a way to incorporate sustainability into your workplace? Get your department or office involved by joining the Green Team Network. The Green Team Network is a campus-wide initiative that empowers faculty and staff to integrate sustainability into everyday workplace decisions through peer-to-peer education, support, and collaboration.
Key features of the program include:
- Departmental Green Team captains who provide resources and leadership to help their departments integrate sustainability in the most effective ways possible
- Training sessions and quarterly meetings to educate and support Green Team captains who, in turn, share the information with their peers
- Monthly campaigns with dynamic resources that focus on specific areas of sustainability implementation
- Communication between departments to share success stories and obstacles
- A flexible framework to allow departments to choose how to best apply practices in the most appropriate ways
Check out these Frequently Asked Questions to learn more.
Ready to join? Email firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up or to learn even more about the program.
Green Team Captain Resources:
Wake Forest’s celebration of Earth Day this year included the announcement of Champions of Change award winners. This was the first year of the program, which recognizes the creativity and innovation of individuals and teams who work to integrate principles of sustainability across campus. Provost Rogan Kersh and Sr. VP/CFO Hof Milam presented the awards.
Winners were recognized in four categories: Resource Conservation, Service and Social Action, Teaching Research and Engagement, and Bright Ideas.
- Residence Life & Housing and Financial Services were jointly named champions of change in Resource Conservation. Residence Life and Housing dramatically reduced solid waste and conserved water through renovation and retrofit programs this past year; Financial Services supported the conversion to electronic business processes campus-wide.
- Campus Kitchen was named as a winner in the Service and Social Action category. Campus Kitchen repurposes prepared, but not served, food from our campus dining facilities into balanced meals for members of the broader Winston-Salem community.
- For Teaching, Research and Engagement, Lynn Book and her faculty colleagues Angela Kocze and Wanda Balzano were recognized for their work in the new course, “Women, Entrepreneurship and Sustainability.” Students collaborated with community partners Margaret Norfleet-Neff and Salem Neff, the mother-daughter team who founded the Old Salem Cobblestone Farmers Market.
- Abby McNeal was recognized for her Bright Idea in turf management and the installation of the UgMo Wireless Soil Sensor System at Spry Soccer Field. UgMo is an underground monitoring system that measures soil moisture at the root level and determines when and how much to water on a zone-to-zone basis.
Thirty nominations were received for the four awards. A committee evaluated the nominations based on:
- The ways in which the nominees have helped advance one or more of the Wake Forest University campus sustainability strategic goals
- The level of participation by colleagues within the department or unit
- The measurable impact among constituents across campus or in the community served
Additionally, Green Team captains Peter Romanov, Darlene Starnes and Carol Lavis were named champions of change for their departmental leadership. 65% of our departments and units across campus are now led by Green Team captains – they support their colleagues with the resources and encouragement to integrate sustainability into everyday workplace decisions.
This coming April, Wake Forest will host our inaugural Champions of Change award ceremony.
In March, we will accept nominations for awards that honor sustainability through:
- resource conservation (energy, water, or waste reduction),
- academics (teaching, research, engaged learning),
- service and social action, and
- bright ideas (innovative ideas that have been or could be implemented).
We look forward to hearing about the work of all the inspiring change agents across campus.
Laughter abounded at last month’s Green Team Quarterly meeting, as Bridget Marrs playfully briefed the Green Team captains on the dos and don’ts of workplace ergonomics. The Green Team, a network of staff and faculty who advocate for the integration of sustainability into their departments’ daily operations, listened closely to Marrs, the Occupational Health, Safety, and Training Coordinator from Wake Forest Environmental Health and Safety (EHS), and made note of information they could bring back to their own offices.
Ergonomics is an applied science that focuses on finding optimal fit between workers and their work environments. An ergonomically sound work environment operates to minimize work-related injuries. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), or ergonomic injuries, account for 33% of all illness and injury cases that result in missed days of work, making ergonomic considerations critical for the financial sustainability of any institution.
In her presentation, Marrs emphasized that ergonomic improvements were possible on any budget and creating an ergonomically sound workplace was often a matter of creatively rearranging what someone already has in place. For those who wanted to see ergonomic work space options in person, Marrs informed the Green Team of the EHS ergonomics lab, located at 2430 A, Reynolda Rd. The lab, opened on April 16th of this year, is set up for visitors to “test drive” different systems.
After the presentation, fourteen Green Team members scheduled personal ergonomics assessments. These assessments, also conducted by Marrs, are free to all Wake Forest staff members. If you would like to schedule a visit to the ergonomics lab or a personal ergonomics assessment, contact Bridget Marrs at .
By Annabel Lang, Wake Forest Fellow for the Office of Sustainability
The Green Team Network has grown to include nearly half of all university offices and departments since the February 2011 launch. Thirty eight departments and offices belong to the network and are working to implement sustainable practices across campus.
We want to give a big shout out to all of our wonderful Green Team Captains and their departments. You are the foundation for positive change. Thank you for all that you do!
Andrew Britt, Undergraduate Admissions
Kyle Bryner, Anthropology
Abby Houser, Athletics
Debbie Lafferty, Benson University Center
Nancy Fauser, Biology
Amanda Fleming, Budget and Financial Planning
Shelley Graves-Sizemore, Campus Life
Sharon Fortner, Campus Police
Barbara Macri, Campus Police
T.J. Peele, Campus Recreation
Mark Henley, Campus Recreation
Linda Tuttle, Chemistry
Dayna Rohrer, Communications and External Relations
Kathryn Drinkuth, Divinity School
Susan Robinson, Divinity School
Adam Friedman, Education
Paul Bogard, English
Steve Fisenne, Facilities and Campus Services
Megan Anderson, Facilities and Campus Services
Peter Nachand, Facilities and Campus Services
Terri LeGrand, Financial Aid
James Ross, Health and Exercise Science
Simone Caron, History
Rebecca Boyd, Information Systems
Adam Shick, Institutional Research
Hillary Lambert, Learning Assistance Center
Sarah Mason, Mathematics
Joanna Porter, Music
Louis Goldstein, Music
Lauren Beam, Personal and Career Development
Kendall Hack, Provost’s Office
Eric Stone, Psychology
Jeannette Rork, Registrar
Sheila Lockhart, Religion
Theresa Earl, Residence Life and Housing
David Bare, Reynolda Gardens
Diane Collins, Student Health Services
Teresa Jackson, Student Health Services
Charlene Watkins, Office of Student Life
Tiffany White, Sustainability Office
Deborah Snyder, Teaching and Learning Center
Carol Lavis, Theatre and Dance
Laura Hemrick, University Compliance Office
Jenny Bush, Wake Forest Properties
Peter Romanov, ZSR Library
Mary Scanlon, ZSR Library
Don’t see your department listed? Talk to your supervisor about starting a Green Team in your office or department and contact the Office of Sustainability for more information.
The public launch of the Green Team Network this month will present university faculty and staff with the opportunity to lead their respective divisions, departments, and units in developing more sustainable behaviors. Through the program, volunteer captains will gain the tools needed to engage their peers, and to promote sustainable behaviors, in ways that are culturally appropriate to their departments. The Green Team Network is aligned with the Office of Sustainability’s mission in that it supports faculty and staff members in assuming leadership for sustainability.
The Green Team was developed as a pilot through the combined efforts of a group of ten staff members, who served as team captains for their offices or departments, and Office of Sustainability staff. Through meetings, on-line communication, and researching similar programs at other universities, the captains and interns worked to create a framework that provides guidance, but is adaptable to a variety of settings.
A key feature of the program is the development of and support for Green Team captains in each office or department across campus. Once a unit chooses to participate, leaders within the department designate one or more captains (depending on the size of the department) to lead their sustainability efforts. No previous experience is necessary to become a Green Team captain. Training sessions are provided through the Professional Development Center and quarterly orientation meetings are hosted by the Office of Sustainability to educate the captains and allow them to share emerging best practices with one another.
The Office of Sustainability provides support through the development of monthly campaign themes. Each campaign theme will focus on one particular area of sustainable practices. Emerging topics of interest to the group include energy reduction, waste reduction, recycling, and purchasing strategies. Campaigns will provide dynamic resources that Green Team captains can apply in ways that they feel will most effectively support their departments.
Ultimately, the goal for the Green Team Network is to provide guidance and support in several areas of sustainability to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of workplace settings on campus. Currently, the pilot team and the Office of Sustainability are developing a meaningful method of recognizing those departments that become active members. The group will also plan an annual award program to recognize the most creative and effective efforts across campus.
Contact the Office of Sustainability at to schedule a presentation for your next department meeting or to learn more about the program and membership.
By Josh DeWitt and Katherine Sinacore, Green Team Interns