Going Green in Lafayette: Q&A with Sustainable Lafayette Co-Founder, Steve Richard

It’s hard to look at Sustainable Lafayette’s 2014 achievements without feeling a swell of community pride!

Sustainable Lafayette - 2014 Highlights

Highlights include our thriving Lafayette Community Garden, the well-attended 9th Annual Earth Day Festival, special educational events and outreach, and growing partnerships with the City of Lafayette, BikeLafayette, the Lafayette Chamber, Lafayette School District, Republic Services and others. Click here to download the details of these 2014 highlights or click the photo to the right to expand the image and read online.

Lafayette-resident Steve Richard is the co-founder of Sustainable Lafayette and serves as Board President. Since Steve has been involved with Sustainable Lafayette from the beginning, we reached out to him with a few questions to better understand the journey Sustainable Lafayette has been on – and where it is headed.

Q: When you first started Sustainable Lafayette, what did you hope could be achieved — and how does it compare to where it is today?

Steve: When Bart Carr and I started Sustainable Lafayette we simply wanted to create a way for residents to learn from and be inspired by each other’s efforts to make their homes more green. So, it was primarily about creating a web site that hosted sustainability success stories submitted by residents. Now, it feels like one of the most active and most vital non-profits in Lafayette that is doing everything we can to lead the community toward a future that is highly sustainable and an amazing place to live. So, our role in the community now feels much more strategic.

Sustainable Lafayette Co-founders -  Bart Carr and Steve Richard

Q: When you look at the 2014 Sustainable Lafayette achievements, what are you personally most proud of?

Steve: While there were many, many achievements in 2014, as shown on our annual highlights summary, I’m the most proud of the growing number of people and organizations involved in and supporting Sustainable Lafayette’s efforts, including our board, committees, Community Garden, volunteers, supporters, sponsors, etc. We work really hard behind the scenes to maintain a fun, positive, can-do culture and compelling vision and I think that’s key to why more and more people are getting involved.

Q: What are Sustainable Lafayette’s top priorities for 2015? Any obvious challenges?

Steve: We develop our goals and priorities for the year during the first two months of the year. One thing that will be a big deal this coming year is that Lafayette will be switching over to a new garbage/recycling service with everything handled by Republic Services (between March and June). We have been working with Republic Services closely and this will be a tremendous opportunity to make further strides in reducing our community’s waste and getting closer to the city’s goal of reaching a 75% waste diversion rate (currently at 62%). The ultimate goal is to have zero waste.

Q: You moved to Lafayette in 1999. What drew you here then — and how do you think Sustainable Lafayette helps improve Lafayette’s attractiveness as a place to live?

Steve: My wife and I moved to Lafayette in 1999 primarily because of the schools and believing that it would be a good place to raise our kids. Just in the past couple of years we’ve realized that most of Sustainable Lafayette’s initiatives are directly enhancing the community and quality of life in Lafayette. When I first walked my mom through the Community Garden she said, “I wish I lived in a community that had a garden like this.”

I think that same statement could be made about all the projects that we’re working on: “I wish I lived in a community that was working so hard to green their schools, or promote biking, or reduce waste, etc.”

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Sustainable Lafayette's 2014 Board Members

Thank you to Steve Richard, Bart Carr and all the people actively involved with Sustainable Lafayette. I am proud to be a Sustainable Lafayette 2015 business sponsor.

Studying the Sustainable Lafayette’s website and all that’s been accomplished thus far made deciding to support Sustainable Lafayette easy. Sustainable Lafayette is making a difference in our community.

As you consider where you want your outreach dollars and energy to go in 2015, please take a closer look at Sustainable Lafayette.


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1 Comment

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