Best for the World: B Corps could give Pennsylvania businesses a bright future

Image via gamechangers500.comScott Kelly and Jenn Rezeli are very good at their jobs. This year their Philly-based firm Re:Vision Architecture was named one of the top “Best for the World” companies by B Corp for its exemplary social and sustainable practices. But Re:Vision wasn’t just recognized for their cutting-edge sustainable architecture projects; the company is affecting Pennsylvania business in another way. The firm is a benefit corporation – a new kind of corporation that prioritizes social and environmental good.

Any business can apply to become a certified b corporation, but many states, including New York and New Jersey, have passed legislation to encourage and support companies to adopt these conscious business practices. In Pennsylvania, House Resolution 1616 is currently up for debate. The legislation would help benefit corporations meet higher standards of purpose, accountability and transparency. In order to qualify for this title, corporations must take their workers, community and environment into account in their decision making processes. Annual benefit reports would measure their overall social and environmental performance using a standard set by a third party.

On Monday, April 2, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives Committee on Commerce will vote on HR 1616. To support the resolution, visit the American Sustainable Business Council, and find out move about benefit corporations here. For more on Re:Vision and their work, check out our November 2011 cover story