Supporting Responsible Growth with Denver’s Sustainability Summit
From left to right, Kent Thiry, chairman and CEO of DaVita Inc, Jerry Tinianow, Denver’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Casey Stock, DaVita’s sustainability manager and Denver Mayor Michael Hancock at the Sustainability Summit kickoff event that engaged 150 sustainability leaders in Denver, Colo.
As a community first, company second, DaVita is excited to join sustainability leaders in the local Denver community as the presenting sponsor at Mayor Hancock’s Denver’s Sustainability Summit in December 2017. This is the third annual Summit that the City and County has hosted on and we are thrilled to have such an integral role in both the planning and support of this program. The theme of the Summit is “Growing Responsibly” which resonates with how DaVita has been intentional with our Village’s growth, as well as with our Denver home. While considering this sponsorship opportunity, we asked ourselves a few questions.
What would it mean to be the presenting sponsor at a pivotal conference hosted by the Mayor of Denver? How could DaVita contribute to the success of the Summit itself? How does the sustainability efforts of the City of Denver overlap with what DaVita is also aiming to do?
This past year, I have had the opportunity and pleasure of serving on the Mayor of Denver’s Advisory Council for Sustainability. In this role, I’ve been able to offer insight to the city about sustainability best practices, as well as learn from fellow peers on how to grow and improve DaVita’s sustainability program. As part of this, I will be leading a session during the Sustainability Summit to guide other business leaders in Denver on how to build and grow their own sustainability programs. Part of this will include a panel with other fellow Denver peers – Snooze AM Eatery, Douglas County Schools, Colorado Event Center and Blue Star Recyclers. This session will focus on how to build sustainability into both the operations and culture of an organization.
The City of Denver is tackling a handful of significant sustainability challenges, including waste diversion from landfills, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and mobility. DaVita has the unique opportunity to share our successes in some of these areas. For example, approximately 83 percent of Denver teammates either walk, take transit, carpool or bike to work. The average for Denver commuters is 55 percent. DaVita has the opportunity to demonstrate to other businesses that sustainable commuting is possible.
In regards to waste diversion, Casa del Mundo (DaVita’s World Headquarters) has a waste diversion rate of 65 percent, which is possible because of our composting and recycling programs. This is an area that Denver struggles with – Denver’s waste diversion average is 17.7 percent. DaVita has committed to demonstrating that overcoming these challenges is possible and Denver’s 2020 Sustainability goals can only be achieved with the assistance of the community. DaVita’s sustainability vision and 2020 Environmental Goals align with that of Denver’s, and we know that by pursuing our initiatives, we have the opportunity to impact our global communities, including Denver.
What I have learned during my five years with DaVita is that it truly takes a Village to make sustainability initiatives come to fruition. It is exciting to have the opportunity to share this with our broader Village – and Casa del Mundo’s hometown– Denver.