BURLINGTON, Vt. -- Every Vermonter knows the story. Two Burlington entrepreneurs turned an ice cream shop into a national brand by following their own rules. They believed that business owners should share their success with all of their stakeholders—employees, suppliers, distributors, customers, cows, everybody.
Award-winning journalist Brad Edmondson tell the rest of the story when he speaks at Champlain College's Roger H. Perry Hall at 7 p.m., on Thursday, Oct. 9. Rob Michalak, Ben & Jerry's global director of social mission, will join him to add details and talk about the company's plans. The event is free and open to the public. It will be followed by a free Ben & Jerry's "ice cream social," and Edmondson's book will be available for purchase.
Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield conquered the world of ice cream, blazed trails for thousands of socially conscious entrepreneurs, gained amazingly loyal customers, and had a lot of fun along the way. But then their business outgrew their management abilities, and they were forced to sell out to a big multinational corporation in 2000. The end, right?
Not so fast. Ben and Jerry aren't running the business any more, but the soul of Ben & Jerry's is still going strong. Edmondson's book Ice Cream Social: The Struggle for the Soul of Ben & Jerry's, is the first book to tell the complete story of this iconic company. Working independently but with full access to the company and its records, he spins a tale of an inspiring rise, tragic mistakes, a devastating fall, determined recovery, and ongoing renewal.
Ice Cream Social is the first book to give a complete account of the unprecedented contract Ben & Jerry's negotiated with Unilever to preserve the vision the founders called "linked prosperity." It also describes the complex working relationship that allows the company to pursue that mission on a much larger stage.
Ben & Jerry's has more than doubled in size since Unilever acquired it, and the product is now sold in almost three dozen countries. In 2012, it joined over 1,100 other companies that are certified as "benefit corporations" and are dedicated to using the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. Today, Ben & Jerry's is leading an international movement for social change.
The Speaking From Experience series is sponsored by Champlain College's Build Your Own Business (BYOBiz) program and brings interesting entrepreneurs and business people to campus to share their experiences and insights with the community. Over the past seven years more than 40 entrepreneurs, mostly local, have informed and inspired our students, faculty, staff and members of the community. All events are held in the Perry Hall Presentation Room on the Champlain College campus. Admission is free and all are welcome.
Learn more about Brad Edmondson at http://bradedmondson.com/
Nadya Zhexembayeva: Monday, Oct., 20, 6 p.m. in the The Morgan Room, Aiken Hall
5:15 p.m., Reception with light refreshments.
Recent data suggests that the rapid decline of every resource from oil to water to stable climate means that our markets become severely "overfished". It is time to face this new economic reality and develop a new strategy for competing in a resource-depleted world. Nadya Zhexembayeva is a business owner, educator, and author working at the intersection of innovation, leadership, and sustainable growth. During this talk, Nadya will look at strategies that pioneering companies use to deal with our increasingly emptying markets, and discuss five principles businesses already use to successfully innovate their way out of empty seas.
Marguerite Dibble '12: Tuesday, Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. in Perry Hall.
Marguerite Dibble '12, founder and creative director, Birnamwood Games. She graduated from Champlain College's Game Art and Animation program in 2012, having already founded game design studio Birnamwood Games. Since then, Dibble and her team at Birnamwood have published two successful games, Loc andPathogen. Dibble is also a member of Champlain College's Board of Trustees. She will share her adventure creating a new company while in college and the bold new direction she is taking her young company in the future.
SPEAKING FROM EXPERIENCE, Thursday, Oct. 9, Award-winning journalist Brad Edmondson will talk about his book, Ice Cream Social: The Struggle for the Soul of Ben & Jerry's, and how the iconic Vermont business made the transition from homemade to international. Champlain College Perry Hall, Presentation Room, 7 p.m. Free and open to the public. For more information, http://ow.ly/Cfaj9
About Champlain College
Since 1878, Champlain College has provided career-focused education to students from its hilltop campus in Burlington, Vt. Champlain's distinctive educational approach embodies the notion that true learning only occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain offers traditional undergraduate and online undergraduate courses, along with online certificate and degree programs and 11 master's degree programs. Champlain offers study abroad programs at its campuses in Montreal, Quebec and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review's The Best 379 Colleges: 2015 Edition. Champlain was named a "Top-Up-and-Coming School" by U.S. News & World Report's America's Best Colleges and is ranked in the top tier of 2014 Regional Colleges in the North. For more information, visit www.champlain.edu