Friday, November 26, 2010

George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts Website Gets Facelift, New Features

GoodBiz113 profilee George Rodrigue ["Louisiana Artist Brings Post-Katrina [Blue Dog] Relief to New Orleans"] has just redesigned the website for his generous George Rodrigue Foundation of the Arts: Youth Development Through Art in Education.

The revamped site features bright splashes of color [literally], plus more user-friendly navigation and links to social media, GRFA news, and information about the foundation's far-reaching programs.

Check it out:

SOURCE: Rodrigue Studio

Get George Rodrigue's Best-Selling "Why Is Blue Dog Blue?" for Your Favorite Young Person. Ages 4-8. [affiliate link]

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Preserve® Gimme 5 Program Partners Reach Out to Recyclers with a Big ‘Thank You’ for 50 Tons of Recycled #5 Plastic in 2010

Thousands of consumers across the nation took time out to recycle through the Gimme 5 program this year. And the numbers prove it: The program has reached its goal of 50 tons -- or 100,000 pounds of recycled yogurt cups, hummus and cottage cheese containers, and countless other tremendously reusable #5 plastic packages. That’s the equivalent of 6.4 million Stonyfield Farm® yogurt containers, 1.3 million Tom’s of Maine® deodorant containers, or 500,000 Brita® filters!

GoodBiz113 profilee Preserve® ["Recycline-Stonyfield Partnership Milks Resources to Benefit the Environment, Consumers and Each Other"] launched the Gimme 5 program in 2009 by working with Whole Foods Market to offer a #5 plastic polypropylene [PP] recycling option in their stores.

Now, Preserve Gimme 5 collection bins are located in more than 200 Whole Foods Market stores in most regions of the U.S., as well as select independent cooperative markets.

The Whole Foods Market Green Mission team leaders and team members, plus other in-store representatives, support the program at the ground level and keep the program running smoothly at the collection sites.

Behind the #5 plastic collected is a rapidly spreading consumer wave of interest and activity. Consumers have incorporated the program into their daily lives by collecting their #5 plastics and dropping them off at participating Whole Foods Market stores or co-ops. They take an active role to encourage their friends and family members to get on board with Gimme 5. Additionally, they’ve created school collection programs, and some who don’t live near collection sites are even shipping their #5 plastic to Preserve on their own dime.

The program provides consumers with a much-needed outlet to recycle their #5 plastic. In turn, consumers’ participation in the program helps to keep reusable resources such as oil and natural gas captured in #5 plastic packages out of landfills. This year, the Preserve Gimme 5 program received more than double the amount of #5 plastic collected last year.

All Gimme 5 program partners use #5 plastic as an integral element of their products or packaging. They have joined Gimme 5 to encourage the reuse of this material. #5 is increasingly being recognized as a more benign plastic, and is the top choice for companies looking to offer a versatile high-quality, yet low-impact, plastic.

"We want to thank all those Gimme 5 recyclers out there who have supported and helped to grow this program," said Preserve Founder and CEO Eric Hudson. "Gimme 5’ers have demonstrated that recycling makes sense; it’s better for the earth than tossing the used packages. Preserve has supported this program with Life Cycle Assessment tools which demonstrated that the Gimme 5 program is better from start to finish than sending perfectly reusable resources to landfills. 50 Tons of Thanks for your efforts for the earth."

One way the Gimme 5 partners are thanking recyclers for their participation is by making a donation of $1,000 on their behalf to the Whole Planet Foundation this Thanksgiving. The mission of Whole Planet Foundation [WPF], a Whole Foods Market foundation, is to empower the poor by providing microcredit loans that give them an opportunity to create or expand home-based businesses and lift themselves out of poverty.

Preserve and its Gimme 5 partners are teaming up to reach out to consumers participating in the program. On Nov. 18, 2010, the Gimme 5 "50 Tons of Thanks" campaign launched on partner websites and social media outlets with special messages to consumers as well as special offers.

To learn more about the Gimme 5 program and #5 plastics, visit

To learn more about the wonders and benefits of #5 plastics, visit

About Preserve®
Preserve is the leading producer of performance-driven and stylish 100% recycled household products. Preserve turns yogurt cups into toothbrushes, and take-out containers into cutting boards.

Preserve has been putting big ideas into small packages -- and finding smarter ways to make everyday products for the kitchen, table, and bathroom -- since 1996.

The company is powered by the recycling efforts of individuals and companies via its Preserve Gimme 5 program. This program accepts #5 plastics that many municipalities do not currently recycle -- such as yogurt cups and other common household containers -- transforming them into new Preserve products.

All recycling and manufacturing is done in the USA. Preserve empowers people to make everyday choices that are better for the earth while offering real solutions without compromise. Preserve products can be found at forward-thinking retailers like Whole Foods Market, Target, and a variety of grocery and natural food stores. Visit the company online at

About Tom’s of Maine®
Tom’s of Maine is a leading natural-products company focused on oral and personal care. Tom's sells high-quality toothpaste, mouth wash, dental floss, deodorant, bar soap, and body wash products.

The company has a long-standing commitment to supporting people, communities and the living planet. For 40 years, Tom's of Maine has sponsored hundreds of non-profit efforts by giving 10% of its profits back to the community, and encouraging employees to use 5% [12 days] of employee time to volunteer.

Tom's of Maine employees regularly contribute suggestions for improving the company’s high sustainability standards. And their ideas -- from wind power to ways to improve recycled and recyclable packaging options, are critical to the company's sensitive way of doing business.

Tom's of Maine enjoys partnering with its consumers, vendors and many community organizations to support lasting, positive change that is good for the earth and us all. Visit Tom's online at

About Stonyfield Farm®
Stonyfield Farm, celebrating its 27th year, is the world's leading organic yogurt company. Its all-natural and certified organic yogurt, smoothies, milk, cultured soy, frozen yogurt and ice cream are distributed nationally.

The company advocates that healthy food can only come from a healthy planet. Its use of organic ingredients helps keep over 180,000 farm acres free of toxic, persistent pesticides and chemical fertilizers known to contaminate soil, drinking water and food.

To help reduce climate change, Stonyfield offsets all of the C02 emissions generated from its facility energy use. The company also started a nonprofit called Climate Counts [], which shows people how they can help fight climate change by the way they shop and invest.

Stonyfield also donates 10% of its profits to efforts that help protect and restore the Earth. For more information about Stonyfield Farm, its products and initiatives, visit

About Brita®
Each year, Americans purchase billions of plastic water bottles. Aside from the environmental impact of all that waste, Americans are spending a great deal on bottled water.

Brita partnered with Nalgene to launch the FilterForGood campaign, which encourages people to reduce their bottled water waste by switching to reusable bottles filled with filtered water. Since the campaign launched in 2007, more than 186,000 people have taken the pledge to reduce their bottled water waste, keeping an estimated 184 million disposable bottles out of landfills. Visit to learn how you can make a difference.

About Whole Foods Market®
Founded in 1980 in Austin, Tex., Whole Foods Market [, NASDAQ: WFMI], is the leading natural and organic food retailer. As America’s first national certified organic grocer, Whole Foods Market was named "America’s Healthiest Grocery Store" by Health magazine.

The company's motto -- "Whole Foods, Whole People, Whole Planet"™ -- captures its mission to ensure customer satisfaction and health, Team Member excellence and happiness, enhanced shareholder value, community support, and environmental improvement.

Thanks to the company’s more than 53,000 Team Members, Whole Foods Market has been ranked as one of the "100 Best Companies to Work For" in America by Fortune magazine for 13 consecutive years. In fiscal year 2009, the company had sales of $8 billion, and currently has more than 280 stores in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom.

For more information about Whole Planet Foundation’s activities, visit

SOURCES: Brita®, Preserve®, Stonyfield Farm®, Tom's of Maine®, Whole Foods Market®

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Monday, November 22, 2010

SBA Chief Backs Repeal of ‘Burdensome’ 1099 Reporting Requirements on Small-Business Transactions

In an open letter to small-business owners, SBA Administrator Karen Mills [pictured] described requirements that small businesses report all transactions greater than $600 as "burdensome," and called for their repeal. Mills said the reporting requirements in the Affordable Care Act, which were to have begun in 2012, add up to "too much paperwork, too much filing."

The text of the letter, which is posted on the SBA website at, follows:

Dear Small Business Owner,

I’m writing to update you on the progress that we have made regarding concerns stemming from the expanded 1099 reporting requirement in the Affordable Care Act, which could affect small businesses starting with 2012 purchases and 2013 filings.

The SBA and the Administration support the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act [introduced by Senator Baucus], which would repeal this provision.

As President Obama said on Nov. 3: "...The 1099 provision in the health-care bill appears to be too burdensome for small businesses. It just involves too much paperwork, too much filing. It’s probably counterproductive." Our support for the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act also follows the Administration’s support in September for Senate Amendment 4595 [offered by Senator Bill Nelson], which would have relaxed the reporting requirement.

All businesses that pay another individual or business $600 or more for goods or services starting in 2012 will be required to issue 1099s. The unintended consequence of a potential paperwork burden resulting from this provision quickly came to light, and we immediately began working across the Administration to reduce the burden of these potential future reporting requirements, as I noted in a letter to small businesses in May. We gathered feedback and comments from the small-business community through roundtables, forums, and other feedback mechanisms involving outreach from the SBA, the Treasury Department, the I.R.S. and others.

Importantly, the repeal of this provision through the Small Business Paperwork Relief Act will not adversely affect the Affordable Care Act, which provides important health-care benefits to millions of Americans. Small businesses are already taking advantage of the new tax credits for providing health insurance to employees this year, and future benefits -- such as the insurance exchanges in 2013 -- will provide small businesses with more negotiating power and reduced administrative costs.

Thank you for the input and feedback that many of you have provided on the impact that the expanded 1099 reporting requirement could have on your business. Overall, with your help, we will continue to ensure that America’s entrepreneurs and small-business owners operate in an environment not burdened by excessive regulation, allowing you to continue doing what you do best: grow businesses, create jobs and lead America’s economic recovery.


Karen Mills
SBA Administrator

* * * * * * * * * *

GoodBiz113's Take
Once again, Administrator Mills [a seasoned entrepreneur and venture capitalist] and the Obama Administration have exercised their common-sense, just-get-out-of-the-way leadership power to simply let small businesses, well, tend to business -- i.e., rather than get mired in the bureaucratic and redundant processes of yore. Their hands-off management style and streamlining-to-the-max ways are refreshing and welcome, indeed.

SOURCE: U.S. Small Business Administration

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Monday, November 08, 2010

Nov. 27: Consumers Can Show Their Support for Small Business This Holiday Season on 'Small Business Saturday[SM]'

First there was Black Friday, then Cyber Monday. On Nov. 27, 2010, comes Small Business Saturday[SM], a day to support the local businesses that create jobs, boost the economy and preserve neighborhoods around the country. This year's first-ever Small Business Saturday is a national movement to drive shoppers to local merchants across the U.S.

Joining GoodBiz113 ad partner American Express OPEN, the company’s small-business unit, in declaring the Saturday after Thanksgiving as Small Business Saturday, are an initial group of more than a dozen advocacy, public and private organizations, including:

* The 3/50 Project
* Business Matchmaking
* Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau
* Count Me In for Women's Economic Independence
* Destination DC
* eWomenNetwork
* Facebook
* Girls Inc.
* Greater Boston Convention and Visitors Bureau
* LA INC. The Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau
* National Association of Women Business Owners [NAWBO]
* National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Main Street Center
* New York City Department of Small Business Services
* NYC & Company
* San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau
* SCORE: Counselors to America's Small Businesses
* Women Impacting Public Policy
* Women’s Leadership Exchange
* Women President’s Organization
* Yelp!

American Express Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Kenneth I. Chenault will launch the nationwide program later today with New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

Small Businesses Rock!
Small businesses are critical to the nation’s overall economy. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration [SBA], there were nearly 28 million small businesses in the United States last year. Over the past two decades, they created 65 percent of net new jobs.

Their importance to local communities extends even further. For every $100 spent in locally owned, independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll and other expenditures, according to the small-business advocacy group The 3/50 Project.

"Small business is the engine of job creation in the U.S. economy," said Mr. Chenault, chairman and chief executive officer, American Express. "It is also among the sectors hardest-hit by the recession. By spreading the word about Small Business Saturday, we can help raise awareness about the critical role small businesses play in cities and towns across the country at a time when they need support the most."

"Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the glue that holds communities together, and we’ve always sought new ways to support them -- something that became even more important when the national economic downturn began," noted Mayor Bloomberg. "When Ken Chenault told me about his idea for Small Business Saturday, I jumped at the opportunity to participate.

"We’ve all heard about Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This year, if you have the opportunity to shop on the Saturday after Thanksgiving, make it a point to visit local small businesses. It really can make an enormous difference for merchants trying to succeed."

Joining the Movement
Social media will play a central role in helping raise awareness about the importance of supporting small business and recognizing Small Business Saturday. American Express is launching campaigns on Facebook and Twitter, driving consumers and business owners to, where they can participate in many ways -- including:

* American Express is giving a $25 statement credit to 100,000 Cardmembers who register their Card and use it to shop on Small Business Saturday at any locally owned, independent small businesses that accept American Express.

* American Express is also giving $100 of free Facebook advertising to 10,000 business owners who sign up at to help build online buzz and drive customers to shop at their businesses on Small Business Saturday. By simply entering a few pieces of information and clicking a button, these business owners can create a personalized, geo-targeted ad that will run on Facebook leading up to Nov. 27. Facebook has donated $500,000 in Facebook credits for these small-business owners to use in the future.

* Small-business owners can also download online promotional materials and use a number of social-media tools to promote their businesses on the inaugural Small Business Saturday.

* Everyone can spread the word about the day and their favorite businesses by giving a shout-out to their favorite local shops and restaurants via Facebook and Twitter.

* For every person who "likes" Small Business Saturday on Facebook, American Express is donating $1 up to $500,000 to Girls Inc., to empower young women to be the entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

To support Small Business Saturday, American Express is also launching a national advertising campaign.

"Supporting local business is more than just a one-day event, and Small Business Saturday is a movement we can all help sustain," Chenault added. "We encourage consumers across the country to join us and the many advocates that are already on board."

Who Has Joined the Movement?
An initial group of more than a dozen advocacy, public and private organizations are thus far part of the Small Business Saturday movement.

"The 3/50 Project is pleased to be joining American Express OPEN on Small Business Saturday," said Cinda Baxter, founder of The 3/50 Project. "According to a recent survey, 90 percent of consumers are willing to pledge support for a buy-local-small-business initiative. So, I ask everyone to pledge their support for Small Business Saturday and to shop exclusively with independent stores on Nov. 27."

The 3/50 Project encourages consumers to pick three locally owned, independent brick-and-mortar businesses they can’t live without, and commit to spending $50 per month across the three businesses -- in addition to all of the other spending they do.

"When we invest in small businesses, we are investing in Main Streets -- the places that give our towns and cities a unique sense of place," said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which includes the National Trust Main Street Center. "By celebrating Small Business Saturday and shopping at independent businesses, everyone can play a part in strengthening our economy and supporting revitalization on our Main Streets."

The National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Main Street Center is a preservation-based economic development program that helps more than 2,000 communities nationally revitalize their historic and traditional commercial districts by leveraging local assets.

For more information on the movement, visit or

American Express OPEN
American Express OPEN is the leading payment card issuer for small businesses in the United States, and supports business owners with products and services to help them run and grow their businesses. This includes business charge and credit cards that deliver purchasing power, flexibility, rewards, savings on business services from an expanded lineup of partners, plus online tools and services designed to help improve profitability.

Learn more at and connect at, and

American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Learn more at, and connect on, and

The 3/50 Project
The 3/50 Project [] is a grass-roots awareness campaign focused on reuniting consumers and independent, locally owned brick-and-mortar businesses in their communities.

Begun in March 2009 as an off-the-cuff blog post written by Minneapolis retail expert, Cinda Baxter, The 3/50 Project asks consumers to return to three local businesses they love and don’t want to lose, then to commit $50 of their current monthly budget toward local, independent merchants.

The message went viral via social media, exploding onto the national stage as a unique, positive and achievable concept. Launch of and its companion Facebook page have since garnered international support from small-business owners and consumers alike.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation Main Street Center
Established in 1980 as a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the National Trust Main Street Center is the nation’s largest commercial district revitalization organization. The Center provides information, offers technical assistance, holds conferences and workshops, and conducts research and advocacy on critical revitalization issues in order to best serve the communities and individuals interested in revitalizing traditional commercial districts.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation [] is a nonprofit membership organization bringing people together to protect, enhance and enjoy the places that matter to them. By saving the places where great moments from history -- and the important moments of everyday life -- took place, the National Trust for Historic Preservation helps revitalize neighborhoods and communities, spark economic development, and promote environmental sustainability.

SOURCES: American Express OPEN, National Trust for Historic Preservation, The 3/50 Project, U.S. Small Business Administration

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