Crawford Canada employee Julie Ellis, adjuster support in the Waterloo, Ontario office, is known among her colleagues as cheerful, enthusiastic and energetic. But more importantly, she’s a tireless advocate for the environment and a natural choice for Eco-Hero, says co-worker Jen Virley, who works in the same office as vice president of operations. “Julie was green before anyone at Crawford was talking about it,” says Virley. “She looks for small ways every day that Crawford and her branch can save money and help the environment at the same time.” Crawford Canada recently implemented its Eco-Hero program to recognize the sustainability efforts of its employees.
Julie has a keen eye for spotting trends and is always looking for a way to create more efficient processes to maximize branch productivity and minimize waste creation. Almost ten years ago, Julie installed paper recycling and blue recycling bins in Crawford Canada’s head office of Kitchener, Ontario. In 2009, she was one of a number of employees who helped initiate Project Green, a sustainability effort designed to minimize Crawford’s impact on the environment and reduce corporate expenses by maximizing resources. In its first year, Project Green saved Crawford approximately $22,000 and began a focus on carbon reduction.
In 2012, Julie and other members of the green team reinvented themselves as GREENSHIFT to change the way Crawford Canada and its employees think about sustainability. Its vision and mission are to create a healthy, sustainable environment and inspire environmental consciousness.
In her personal life, she takes to heart the advice she gives about being green and encouraging sustainability, often being the first person to gently remind a friend to recycle – or she will move offending articles from garbage to recycling herself. Instead of driving a car, she takes public transportation or rides her bike. Julie and husband Stephane use environmentally-friendly products at home and purchase only locally-grown produce from the farmers market. “Buy your food and products from close to home,” she says. “It’s both environmentally and economically smart because it stimulates the economy you live in.”
Crawford & Company has had sustainability programs in place for several years, from adding sustainability criteria into our purchasing policies, selecting vendors that offer eco-friendly solutions, to using fuel-efficient, lower emissions fleet vehicles. We have implemented programs to reduce energy consumption in our data centers and use audio and videoconferencing to reduce travel impacts. Every administrative and operational process is carefully reviewed to potentially reduce our carbon footprint.
Read more about Crawford’s sustainability efforts here. How are you living an eco-friendly lifestyle? What changes have you made to incorporate sustainability efforts? Do you have any tips for living green?