by ANNA RABHAN
A CPA, a website designer and an eco-consultant all walk into a Whole Foods… . No, seriously! Friday, May 7, marked the beginning of the Green Social Mixer. This networking event for “those in green business or looking to join,” organized by Global GreenUp, LLC., takes place each first Friday from 6 – 8 p.m. at the Whole Foods in Mandarin (www.wholefoods.com).
Global GreenUp founder and event organizer Martin Kabaki says, “My vision for this is to get people [who are] for green to come together every month.” He adds, “We’re going to have a green company every month sponsor [the event].” This month, Whole Foods played that role adding an organic beer and wine tasting and surprising attendees with a free bottle of the wine they had sampled.
The Green Social Mixer concept got off to a grand start with about 25 people in attendance. Kabaki says, “Honestly, I expected 6 or 7 people so I’m quite surprised and so happy.” And to dispel the stereotypical image some people might have of such an event, there really were a CPA, a website designer and an eco-consultant in attendance. Also taking advantage of the opportunity to meet like-minded people with practical green business goals were a capital management advisor, a marketing strategist, the owner of a nursery that specializes in native plants, a PartyLite consultant, the owners of a company specializing in natural cork products, a couple building what will be Jacksonville’s first platinum LEED-certified residence, along with many others.
The evening began with introductions led by Martin Kabaki. Mike, Whole Foods’ beer and wine buyer, gave a thorough description of the organic beer and wine attendees were sampling and described some of Whole Foods’ green efforts. Mr. Kabaki then introduced the speaker for this month, Kimberly Reaves of A New U! Healing Arts Center (www.anewuhealingartscenter.com).
Mrs. Reaves became interested in alternative healing therapies after a debilitating car accident allowed her plenty of opportunity to study the nature of pain. She made the change from a career in laboratory sciences in order to open her practice. During her talk, Mrs. Reaves likened the “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” motto to the body’s healing process in order to explain her business quite effectively. She described the services she offers, such as therapeutic bodywork, detoxification therapies and the BodyTalk System, none of which involve the use of harmful chemicals. “So that’s why it’s called ‘green healing,’” she says. “It’s natural.”
After Mrs. Reaves’ talk and the question and answer session, attendees had time to mingle, get to know each other and exchange business cards. Mr. Kabaki’s wish that everyone bring a friend or two next time will certainly be fulfilled based on the number of times those present exclaimed, “Oh, I know someone who does that!”
The next Green Social Mixer, on Friday, June 4, will feature Corie Baker who will speak about green building. Ms. Baker is Design Principal for c squared ARCHITECTS. Her complete bio can be found at www.c2jax.com.
To be a speaker or to sponsor a Mixer, call 904-236-9966 or email Global GreenUp, LLC through the contact page on their website www.globalgreenup.com.
Green Social Event
by ANNA RABHAN