GreenTown: The Future of Community | Creating Healthy, Sustainable Communities


a5 inc. and Seven Generations Ahead have held GreenTown: The Future of Community since 2007, consistently creating actionable dialogue for leaders of the public and private sectors.

Here is what some of our speakers, sponsors and attendees have had to say about their experiences at GreenTown:

I could not have imagined a better experience than the one I had through my involvement with Greentown.  The wonderful collection of speakers and the knowledge base that rallied to help our community grow was impressive.  However, the truly valuable part for me was the opportunity to link with people who can really make a difference in my world, the world that I walk in each day and work so hard to see prosper.  I was so fortunate to have been invited to participate on the steering committee through the Southwest Michigan Sustainable Business Forum.  (Becky Kliss rocks!)  To my pleasant surprise, the Steering Committee was a group of people with open minds for learning from everyone in the room.  I believe this is due to the spirit and mission of Greentown… to link regional people to create action around their current small success stories.  I can see how each of these stories can add up to a world of change.

- Bill LaDitka, Director of Architecture, Wightman & Associates, Inc.

“GreenTown provides a great opportunity to meet local community stakeholders, learn about how to localize the economy, and be inspired to develop sustainable communities.”

- Norman Christopher, Director of Sustainability, Grand Valley State University

“GreenTown is a great forum for bringing diverse stakeholders together as a venue to brainstorm on current challenges at the municipal and regional level. It is a way to build a network for sharing new ideas and collaborating on the next generation of solutions. GreenTown brings a network of engaged leaders together. This is key to the advancement of sustainable development at the regional and municipal level.”

- Sam Miller, Associate Professional Specialist, University of Notre Dame / Former VP Strategy & Marketing, JFNew

“GreenTown provides an exceptional venue for social networking, referral marketing, and endorsement of best practices in community sustainability. The conference is a place to learn more about progressive and forward-thinking communities and their application of innovation and best practices, through local champions, servant leaders, and pioneers of change.”

- Corky Overmyer, Sustainability Consultant, United Water

“GreenTown was an outstanding event. We were invited to the private discussions regarding sustainability which was a great opportunity to get more involved with the local communities. GreenTown opened up the lines of communication for organizations like Viability to share with other businesses and communities the opportunities that exist today, which is extremely important in order for us to change the word we live in and way we view it.”

- Kyle Denning, Project Manager, Viability LLC

“GreenTown is a smokin’ event. Every policy maker and elected official should be there.”

-Charles Daas, Professor of Urban Planning, University of Illinois at Chicago

“The Mayor and I attended the first GreenTown in 2007 in Oak Park, and we left the event knowing we needed to set Highland Park on a path to sustainability. Today, we have a community sustainability plan and are implementing the plan. GreenTown provided a spark, and we hope to host an event in 2012 to help continue to move us forward”.

- Steve Mandel, Councilman, Highland Park, Illinois