At Brand Fuel, we believe in the power of community and business as a force for good. As new kids in the B Corp community, we were thrilled to support the first in-person BLD (B Corp Leadership Development) Southeast! BLDs (pronounced “builds”) are all-day conferences organized by B Local Community leaders to strengthen and support local B Corp movements. BLD events provide an avenue for employees of mission-driven businesses to network, collaborate, connect, and share best practices for business and their maximum positive impact.

Organized by B Locals from the southeast, this year’s BLD SE was hosted in Raleigh at NC State University – in partnership with the Business Sustainability Collaborative. Meeting Kate Williams, CEO of 1% of the Planet, and Jorge Fontanez, CEO of B Lab U.S. & Canada, were highlights!  

Over 200 participants attending the Diversity in Action session.
Kate Williams, CEO of 1% for the Planet, and Jorge Fontanez, CEO of B Corps US & CAN, collaborate and share stories.

We were so proud of our Director of Social Impact & Sustainability, Mel Hubner, who has led the charge with B Local NC Triangle since 2020. Mel has been a huge advocate internally encouraging our team to engage & support other B Corp teams and brands who share our passion for triple-bottom-line businesses. 

We also provided some exciting merch for the event, including attendee giveaways, door prizes, and speaker gifts for those who generously volunteered their time to share their expertise at the conference.  

All the thoughtfully made and curated merch!
Mel Hubner, Brand Fuel’s Director of Social Impact & Sustainability, kicks off the event!

Shoutout to ReneeJessieColleen and Teressa for representing Brand Fuel at the event, and thank you to our Co-President, Danny Rosin, for sharing his experience & insights as a panelist in the Action & Change Start Locally session. 

Danny Rosin speaking at the Action & Change Start Locally panel.
Renee Holmes and Jessie Bryan hosting Brand Fuel’s table.

Missed the event? Here are some takeaways for you: 

  • Social impact work is challenging, but burnout isn’t the outcome you want. Balance and self-care are vital to being effective agents of change. 
  • Building this movement means making impact work accessible through better language and understanding.   
  • Impact investing isn’t just about finances—it’s about preserving personal missions and values, ensuring that impact goes beyond the bottom line. 
  • Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (JEDI) isn’t a separate initiative—it’s a lens through which leaders should view every decision. 
  • B Corps are each other’s best resources in this movement. Whether it’s turning our B Corp community into a circular economy or activating change in our own local communities, we have the power to make a difference. So, show up and participate in these sorts of event!

BLD Southeast 2023 was a celebration of our collective journey and a reminder that, together, we can build businesses that not only thrive but also do better for people and our planet. We’re proud to have been a part of this event, and we look forward to continuing our work alongside this incredible community.