Community Partners Profile: Junior Achievement







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MECHANICS BANK NAPA OFFICE GOES GREEN -

“It’s easy when you’re doing so many things right already!”


Napa, CA—July 2, 2007—Mechanics Bank’s offices in the cities of Napa and St. Helena have become the only bank offices in Napa County to earn the Green Business designation.

Two years ago, Mechanics Bank became the first bank in California to have a branch office Green Certified—and still has by far the most certified branch offices of any bank operating in the state.

Green Businesses have passed a rigorous certification process initiated by the Association of Bay Area Governments, a regional planning agency charged with helping solve problems in areas such as land use, housing, environmental quality and economic development. The counties of Napa, Sonoma, San Francisco (city and county), Marin, Contra Costa, Alameda and Santa Clara have participating Green Business Programs.

Napa Green Business Coordinator Steven Lederer said, “It’s wonderful that Mechanics Bank is running its offices in an environmentally sensitive way. It’s truly a forward-looking approach to business.”

Bonnie Hawkinson, a Customer Service Representative who oversaw the Green Business certification effort at both bank offices, says she was responding to the challenge issued by Mechanics Bank’s Sr. Vice President of Retail Banking, Rauly Butler. “He challenged every office to become Green Certified by the end of the year,” she said. “There is top-down support for this initiative. And, of course, employees think it is wonderful that Mechanics Bank is willing to invest in being environmentally responsible.”

Hawkinson said that despite a comprehensive application form running nearly a dozen pages, “it really wasn’t hard at all for us to earn the Green designation. It’s easy when you’re doing so many things right already. Mechanics Bank already has incorporated good environmental and conservation practices into its operations as standard procedure.”

Nonetheless, it was a time-intensive process. To win certification, each office had to address four areas of eco-friendly activities: pollution prevention, solid waste reduction, energy conservation, and water conservation. For each of these sections of the application, the offices underwent an extensive review designed to evaluate their effectiveness and offer additional suggestions for reduction, conservation or prevention.”

In addition to wearing its certification proudly, Mechanics Bank encourages others to go Green, too. It even has placed signs in common areas of its buildings that describe the program and provide contact information for other businesses interested in pursuing certification.

About The Bay Area Green Business Program

The Bay Area Green Business Program is a successful partnership of environmental agencies and utilities that assists, recognizes and promotes businesses and government agencies that volunteer to operate in a more environmentally responsible way. To be certified "green," participants must be in compliance with all regulations and meet program standards for conserving resources, preventing pollution and minimizing waste. The program offers motivated businesses and agencies an easy-to-use framework for improving environmental performance. Over 850 businesses and public agencies have been certified since 1996. For more information go to: http://www.abag.ca.gov/bayarea/enviro/gbus/gb.html"



Press contacts:
Ms. Hatti Hamlin
925.872.4328
HattiHamlin@aol.com

Mr. David Louis
510.741.3328
David_Louis@mechbank.com