About Us

RESOLVE is a non-profit organization specializing in designing, facilitating, and managing collaborative processes to develop enduring solutions to environmental, natural resource, and public health policy challenges. For over 35 years, RESOLVE has made a name for itself in the field of environmental conflict resolution as being a foremost expert in helping stakeholders work together to address tough issues and reach enduring solutions. RESOLVE has successfully partnered with companies, organizations, and government agencies to create effective and credible stakeholder engagement programs and policy solutions that build relationships, manage conflict, and achieve goals.

As part of the public comment period for the Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement, RESOLVE organized, facilitated, and managed a multi-stakeholder dialogue on how best to conduct a pilot effort for purposes of modeling, testing, and further informing and refining the development of the draft guidelines. RESOLVE has extensive additional experience working on issues associated with standards and certification systems. For example, RESOLVE facilitated and served as Secretariat for an international, twelve-member Steering Committee that conducted a State-of-Knowledge Assessment, including what is known and what is important to learn about the performance and potential of voluntary standards and certification schemes. The landmark report, Toward Sustainability: The Roles and Limitations of Voluntary Certification was released in June 2012. Included in this comprehensive analysis are in-depth reviews of standards and certification systems for wild-caught fish, aquaculture, forest products, and agricultural and farming systems.

Industrial Economics Inc. (IEc), founded in 1981, is an environmental and economic consulting firm providing expert analysis to clients in government, business, and not-for-profit organizations. IEc’s 80+ consultants have subject-matter expertise in all major environmental areas including sustainability, and have extensive training and experience in policy analysis, economic and financial analysis, measurement and evaluation, and information management. IEc has particular experience supporting EPA in the development of the Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement. IEc conducted research to inform the development of the guidelines; conducted a preliminary test of the guidelines with carpet standards; provided technical writing support for the interagency “Section 13” report that originally housed the draft guidelines; conducted a cost analysis of options for guidelines implementation; and assisted EPA in responding to public comments on the draft guidelines.

SEM Advisors operates a network of highly specialized independent consultants and member firms that partner with small and medium enterprises, Global 500 companies and leaders across the nonprofit and public sectors to design, coordinate and implement the right talent, strategies and solutions for complex sustainability projects. SEM Advisors worked closely with RESOLVE to convene stakeholders who provided a collective comment on key issues and potential approaches for the Guidelines for Environmental Performance Standards and Ecolabels for Federal Procurement Pilot, and has previous experience working directly with standards developers, as well as facilitating a collaboration among leading environmental groups, manufacturers, architectural and design firms and corporate purchasers to identify, strengthen and differentiate “leadership” sustainability standards.

EPA’s Environmentally Preferable Purchasing representatives observing the process:

Alison Kinn Bennett is U.S. EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention Senior Advisor for sustainable products and purchasing and lead for the Guidelines Pilot. She founded and co-leads two influential networks within EPA—the Green Building Workgroup and the Sustainable Products & Purchasing Network—which bring together policy and technical staff to advance holistic, life cycle-based approaches to environmental and human health protection. Since 2001, Alison has served in EPA’s Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program, focusing her efforts on voluntary consensus standards and specifications for greener building products and construction services. In this role, Alison has represented EPA in the development of sustainability standards within ASTM International, NSF International, UL-Environment, and the Cradle to Cradle Product Innovations Institute. Alison is also representing EPA on the advisory committees of the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council, the Responsible Purchasing Network, ISEAL’s Claims Guidance, and UNEP’s Sustainable Public Procurement Program. Alison earned Bachelors of Arts in Political Science and Geography from the University of California at Berkeley and a Masters in Urban and Environmental Planning from the University of Virginia School of Architecture.

Holly Elwood is a Senior Program Manager for the EPA’s Environmentally Preferable Purchasing Program in EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention in Washington D.C. She has over 16 years of experience working on a variety of green purchasing topics and assisting federal agencies in factoring the environment into purchasing decisions.

Her work includes:
– participating in development of processes to form EPA recommendations for non-federal specifications, standards, and ecolabels for use in federal procurement
– managing research on integration of green purchasing requirements into federal e procurement systems
– helping shape federal policy on procurement of greener products and services,
– coordinating EPA technical input into several electronic product environmental performance standard development efforts, and
– providing technical assistance to federal purchasers seeking to procure greener electronic products.

She is currently a Co-Chair of the Federal Electronics Stewardship Working Group, and a member of the Interagency Conformity Assurance Working Group, the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council’s IT Technical Advisory Group, the Joint Committee of the NSF 426 Sustainable Servers Standard, and the IEEE 1680.1 Working Group for the Environmental Assessment of Personal Computer Products.

Holly is participating in the furniture panel to learn how the process of applying the Draft Guidelines works, and to seek insights that will help EPA ensure successful refinement of the Guidelines and application of the Guidelines to other product and service categories.



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