Triple Bottom Line: The start of it all for Sierra Business Council
February 1, 2012
TRUCKEE, Calif. andamp;#8212; The Sierra Sun has often featured the work of Sierra Business Council, a nonprofit founded in Truckee in 1994. In 1996, as a novice Sierra Sun columnist, I was asked to write a story about the Sierra Business Councilandamp;#8217;s publication of the andamp;#8220;Sierra Nevada Wealth Index.andamp;#8221; The Sierra Nevada Wealth Index introduced to me the concept of triple bottom line thinking. I hungrily embraced the concept that environment, economy and community success are interdependent and measurable. The Sierra Nevada Wealth Index was groundbreaking, and I was blown away. It wasnandamp;#8217;t just the comprehensive breadth of the Wealth Index that amazed me, though. Sierra Business Council amazed me: andamp;#8220;Really?andamp;#8221; I thought. andamp;#8220;A bunch of business leaders put this organization together? Economy+environment +community=wealth. No way.andamp;#8221;Now, 15 years later, I have joined Sierra Business Council as Manager of Development and frankly, once again, Iandamp;#8217;m blown away.The people Iandamp;#8217;m lucky enough to work with are accomplishing so much more than I could possibly have imagined. As manager of development at a nonprofit, I am faced with many issues. Perhaps the greatest issue I face is that people donandamp;#8217;t really know what we do at Sierra Business Council. I hadnandamp;#8217;t known, and I was paying attention. When my younger son finally asked about what I do all day, I told him, andamp;#8220;Weandamp;#8217;re working to make the Sierra Nevada stronger.andamp;#8221; Heandamp;#8217;s a tween. andamp;#8220;Oh, thatandamp;#8217;s good,andamp;#8221; he said. Conversation done. So far, thatandamp;#8217;s the only time a simple explanation has sufficed.What we do at Sierra Business Council is complicated because the triple bottom line approach is comprehensive. Our efforts are hard to sum up in a few words because we take just about everything into consideration with everything we do.To help others understand the impact of our work, the Sierra Sun has graciously granted Sierra Business Council the opportunity to introduce andamp;#8220;Triple Bottom Line,andamp;#8221; a column about the work of Sierra Business Council. This is the first installment.When I wrote my first article about Sierra Business Council for the Sierra Sun, way back when, I didnandamp;#8217;t understand that with publication of the Sierra Nevada Wealth Index, Sierra Business Council pioneered triple bottom line thinking. I am happy to know now the idea has been embraced and adopted around the world. Iandamp;#8217;m pleased to be a part of the organization that started it all and am grateful the Sierra Sun is willing to share more Sierra Business Council successes with the Truckee community.Anne Grogan is Sierra Business-Councilandamp;#8217;s manager of development.