The SHIFT Summit: Culture

On Wednesday, October 8, The SHIFT Summit begins with Culture—an exploration of conservation and the built environment.

The day-long program, which will take place at the National Museum of Wildlife Art, showcases the winners of our SHIFT Sustainability Awards in the Culture (built environment) category. The program will highlight innovative approaches to common challenges shared by North American GEMS, and ways to expand those approaches to other communities.

Tickets for the Summit are available here.

Complementary transportation will be provided from the town of Jackson to the National Museum of Wildlife Art and back per the following schedule:

8:00 a.m.: Pick-up at the Ride2Fly stop (located at the parking lot garage on Simpson Street, between Millward and Glenwood streets: 180 W Simpson Ave, Jackson, WY 83001; 43.477516, -110.764619)
8:15 a.m.: Drop-off at the Museum
6:35 p.m.: Pick-up at the Museum
6:45 p.m.: Drop-off at the Ride2Fly stop

Culture | Wednesday, October 8

8:30 AM: Welcome and Opening Remarks

Christian Beckwith, SHIFT Director

GEMS and Our Public Lands: A Balanced Relationship Between Man and Land

Location: Auditorium

8:45: Responsible Energy, Sustainable GEMS

Panel moderator: Mark Barron, Mayor, Jackson, WY


  • Lisa Yoder, Sustainability Coordinator, Summit County (Park City, UT)
  • Kate Bowman, Solar Project Coordinator, Utah Clean Energy (Salt Lake City, UT)
  • Mona Newton, Executive Director, Community Office for Resource Efficiency (Aspen, CO)
  • Phil Cameron, Executive Director, Energy Conservation Works (Jackson, WY)

Location: Auditorium

9:45: Coffee Break

10:00: Local Foods, Strong Environments

Panel moderator: Georgie Stanley, Snowdrift Farms (Victor, ID)

  • Randi Baird, Founding Member & Director, Island Grown Initiative (Martha’s Vineyard, MA)
  • Sam Rose, Executive Director, Raiz de Fondo (La Paz, Mexico)
  • Lill Erickson, Executive Director, Western Sustainability Exchange (Livingston, MT)
  • Jeanne Liston, Executive Director, Hunger Coalition (Sun Valley, ID)

Location: Auditorium

11:00: Affordable Housing as Conservation

Panel moderator: Anne Cresswell, Executive Director, Jackson Hole Housing Trust

  • Philippe Jordi, Executive Director, Island Housing Trust (Martha’s Vineyard, MA)
  • Christine Walker, Teton County Housing Authority (Jackson, WY)
  • Mark Truckey,
 Assistant Director,
 Community Development Department, Town of Breckenridge’s SustainableBreck Business Program (Breckenridge, CO)

Location: Auditorium

12:00 PM: Lunch 

Lunch is available for purchase at the Rising Sage Café.

National Museum of Wildlife Art

1:00: By Foot, Bike or Bus: Transportation Choices for the 21st Century

Panel moderator: Ben Ellis, Teton County Commissioner

  • Paul Murphy, General Manager, Downeast Transportation / Island Explorer Bus System (Bar Harbor, ME)
  • Brian Schilling, Executive Director, Jackson Hole Community Pathways (Jackson, WY)
  • Kate Rusch, Public Information Officer, Estes Park Free Shuttles (Estes Park, CO)
  • Alicia Cox, Executive Director, Yellowstone-Teton Clean Energy Coalition (Jackson, WY)

Location: Auditorium

2:00: Local Government: The Biggest Conservationist in the Room

Panel moderator: Bob McLaurin, Town Manager (Jackson, WY)

  • Steve Skadron, Mayor of Aspen, City of Aspen’s Canary Initiative (Aspen, CO)
  • John Borrowman, Mayor of Canmore, Town of Canmore’s Sustainability Screening Report (Canmore, Alberta, Canada)
  • Mark Truckey,
 Assistant Director,
 Community Development Department, Town of Breckenridge’s SustainableBreck Business Program (Breckenridge, CO)
  • Kristen Bertuglia, Environmental Sustainability Coordinator, Community Development Department, Town of Vail’s Environmental Sustainability Strategic Plan (Vail, CO)

Location: Auditorium

3:00: Coffee Break

3:30: Breakout Group

Participants will divide into small groups organized around the themes of:

  • food
  • energy
  • transportation
  • affordable housing

Each breakout group will further refine the best practices and specific actions for a roadmap to sustainable communities.

Location: Wapiti Gallery

4:30: Report Back 

Each group shares their refined best practices and actions. This includes a quick summary of the groups conversation and recommendations for “best practices” for GEMS in North America. After presentations audience will be provided an opportunity for Q&A and additional discussion.

Location: Auditorium

5:00: Facilitated Discussion 

Synthesizes the proceedings of the day and allows for participant feedback to give the day’s deliverables structure. Final refinement and sign off on best practices for presentation at Friday’s plenary session.

Location: Auditorium

5:30: Adjourn

Reception to follow. Location: Johnston Hall


City of Aspen’s Canary Initiative, Aspen, CO. The Canary Initiative is Aspen’s greenhouse gas reduction program working to fight climate change and protect powder days.

City of Aspen’s Roaring Forks Transportation Authority, Aspen, CO. RFTA is at the forefront of public transportation, incorporating hybrid busses and biofuels into their fleet. They have received multiple awards and accolades throughout their existence, including the White House Champions of Change Transportation Innovator.

Community Solar, Park City, UT. SCS is managed by Utah Clean Energy, a Utah non-profit organization, working with Summit County, Park City, and a volunteer Steering Committee to overcome the logistical and financial hurdles of going solar.

Community Office for Resource Efficiency, Aspen, CO. CORE works cooperatively with businesses, individuals, utilities and government entities to create measurable improvements in energy and water efficiency in order to benefit the environment and develop a more sustainable economy.

Island Explorer Bus System, Bar Harbor, ME. The Island Explorer Bus System features eight bus routes linking hotels, inns, and campgrounds with destinations in Acadia National Park and neighboring village centers. Clean propane-powered vehicles offer Mount Desert Island visitors and residents free transportation to hiking trails, carriage roads, island beaches, and in-town shops and restaurants.

Island Grown Initiative, Martha’s Vineyard, MA. Empowering a new generation of students on Martha’s Vineyard to make healthy eating choices, learn to grow food, and connect to local farms and our agricultural heritage.

Island Housing Trust, Martha’s Vineyard, MA. The IHT is a community based non-profit organization whose mission is the development and permanent stewardship of land for affordable housing through long-term ground leasing.

Hunger Coalition, Sun Valley, ID. The Hunger Coalition strives to end hunger in our community by providing wholesome food to those in need and by promoting solutions to the underlying causes of hunger through collaboration, education and advocacy.

Town of Canmore’s Sustainability Screening Report, Alberta, Canada. Canmore’s Sustainability Screening Report (SSR) asks developers to come forward before a project is approved with a document that explains the net environmental, social, and economic benefit of their project as it relates to community sustainability.

Town of Breckenridge’s SustainableBreck Business Program, Breckenridge, CO. This program provides free energy and environmental assessments as well as personal assistance to businesses to help businesses save operating costs (on energy, waste, supplies, water, and transportation costs) while reducing the business’s carbon footprint.

Town of Vail’s Environmental Sustainability Strategic Plan, Vail, CO. The Vail Environmental Strategic Plan was adopted to maintain and improve environmental quality in the Vail valley and to ensure the prolonged economic health of the region.

Raiz del Fundo, La Paz, Baja California Sur, Mexico. The mission of  Raiz del Fondo is to create a network of gardens in BCS that provide inspiration and educational opportunities in organic gardening, healthy food preparation and consumption, and water conservation while reclaiming under-utilized spaces and strengthening community connections.

Western Sustainablity Exchange, Livingston, MT. The mission of the Western Sustainability Exchange is to advance sustainable choices that enhance economic opportunities which preserve open space, wildlife habitat, farm and ranch lands, and quality of life for future generations.


Rocket Fuel