Ingenuity Receives Green Industry Leader Award

NCNM Presents Ingenuity Innovation Center with Green Industry Leader Award

The National College of Natural Medicine (NCNM) awarded Ingenuity Innovation Center the Green Industry Leader Award at their fourth annual Garden Gala event.  This year’s theme titled, “50 Shades of Green” was held on Thursday, June 16th, 2014 focused on honoring organizations whose eco-friendly leadership in the field of “green” is exceptionally praiseworthy.

NCNM discovered Ingenuity through Astrid Harmon, who works as a Project Assistant for the college.  “I received a call from Astrid letting us know about the Garden Gala event that was coming up,” stated Kate.  “She felt like it might be the perfect opportunity to see about having us get a booth to share what we are doing at Ingenuity and see if there is a way to get more involved with NCNM’s events.  We said we would love to participate, so she set up a meeting with her manager, Susan Hunter (VP of Advancement). Later, we learned that the President, David Schleich, wished to join as well.  When we finally met with them in person, they were so excited about what we are doing that we felt it was only appropriate to invite them out for dinner and a tour.”

Not only did David and Susan attend, but Orna Izakson, Lead Physican at NCNM’s Traditional Root Institute and Susanna Czeranko, David’s wife, who is the Rare Book Room Curator at NCNM also joined.  The evening was filled with lots of interest and discussion around health, food and innovation.  At the end of the evening, it was decided that Ingenuity Innovation Center should also be honored at the Garden Gala event for the community work that network of “Ingenuers” are developing.  In addition, the NCNM team wished to invite Ingenuity into developing a strategic partnership around bringing aquaponic systems to the college and their programs.

“It is just a dream come true,” stated Rosemary Imhof.  “This is an amazing college that is so in line with the values we are creating here.  We are so excited in looking at how we can help bring what we know to others.”

The Garden Gala event had over 200 attendees.  In addition to being honored that night as an award recipient, NCNM arranged to have a table for a pre-dinner demonstration of energy solutions and aquaponics.

“It was great to see so many people of all ages get involved, ask questions and learn about how these kinds of innovations could change the world,” stated Aaron.  “Lots of people stopped by to learn what we are doing and got excited to come out.”

At the dinner, Ingenuity Innovation Center was invited to sit at the President’s table.  Here David, Susanna and their family sat with Kate, Aaron and Rosemary during the dinner and award.  The evening was filled with wonderful speakers, including Andrei Codrescu, poet, novelist and commentator on NPR’s All Things Considered.  Ingenuity Innovation Center was one of a handful of organizations NCNM wished to honor.  Others included, A Tree For All: A Community Stream Planting Challenge,  The Children’s Museum: Their Outdoor Children’s Garden and Grow Portland.

“We really could not have done this without everyone’s help,” stated Kate.  “Ingenuity Innovation Center is a community-supported innovation center.  The ideas, connections and support that everyone has brought forward has helped make this aware possible.  To that we say thank you to each and every one of you all.”

All proceeds from the Gala will benefit NCNM’s master campus plan to grow many flowers, plant medicinal herbs and gardens and to support the environment. Health begins with planting one plant at a time!