Clark County honors environmental sustainability champions with Green Awards

Published Date

This Earth Day, Clark County Public Health is celebrating community leaders in environmental sustainability being honored with 2022 Green Awards. The annual Green Awards highlight the accomplishments of community members and businesses and celebrate their commitment to reducing harmful environmental impacts, educating others, and giving back to the community.

Here are the 2022 Green Awards winners:

Alexandra Yost – Green Apple Award for school employee

Alexandra Yost is an advanced culinary teacher at Washougal High School. She recently helped transition the school from single-use serviceware to durable serviceware. With Yost’s guidance, Washougal High School has become a leader among schools in Clark County, demonstrating a successful model of cafeteria sustainability that other schools can replicate.

Hockinson Heights Elementary – Green Team Award for student green team

The Hockinson Heights Elementary Green Team didn’t let challenges of the last year keep them from accomplishing their sustainability goals. The school’s green team is facilitated by staff, but the students take the lead on educating their peers. This year, the team has focused on the cafeteria and helped students learn how to properly sort their lunch waste into bins for garbage, recycling, and composting.  

Wallis Engineering – Green Business of the Year, small business category

Wallis Engineering’s attention to environmental details led to a long list of strategies for reducing their impact. Not satisfied with only having a recycling program, the Vancouver civil engineering consulting firm committed to reuse to cut down on waste. Scrap paper is turned into note pads, filtered water is provided so employees can use refillable water bottles, and appliances are repaired instead of being scrapped to buy new.

PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center – Green Business of the Year, large business category            

Despite the challenges that COVID-19 presents to hospitals, PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center has had numerous environmental successes in the past year. Clean wrap containing surgery instruments is now collected for recycling, which keeps tons of material from going to the landfill. The hospital signed a pledge with the World Resources Institute to increase plant-based offerings and reduce climate impacts of the food served. And the hospital joined Clark Public Utilities Strategic Energy Management cohort to reduce energy consumption through no-cost improvements and behavior change.  

Columbia Springs – Green Business of the Year, nonprofit or government agency category

As an environmental education organization, Columbia Springs realizes the importance of demonstrating green practices and allows visitors to see sustainability projects in action. Green cleaning products are used throughout their buildings, and they manage stormwater onsite with a rain garden and green roof to improve water quality. Stormwater medallions were installed at catch basins to increase awareness that storm drains lead directly to streams or groundwater.   

Kris Potter – Master Composter Recycler Superstar

Kris Potter embodies the longevity and success of the Master Composter Recycler program, which dates to the early 1990s. Potter is the resident lasagna garden compost expert among the Master Composter Recycler volunteer community and has helped Clark County to reduce food and urban organic wastes going to the landfill through her efforts. Potter trains new volunteers, teaches public workshops and leads hands-on demonstration opportunities to teach the community about this innovative composting method. 

Videos about the Master Composter Recycler, Green Businesses of the Year, Green Team and Green Apple award winners are available online. Visit the Green Business, Green Schools and Master Composter Recycler webpages to learn more about the county programs.