The Jefferson County Sustainability Awards are held annually to acknowledge and celebrate environmental stewardship and sustainability efforts made by organizations, employees, students and constituents in Jefferson County. 


Nominees should live, work or study in Jefferson County and align with the County's mission, vision and values set forth by the county commissioners.

Award categories

  • Community (3)
    • Organization/Business Award: Any business, nonprofit and/or their employee(s)
    • Student/Educational Institution Award: Any educational institution (Elementary/Middle/High School, Community College, University, etc.) and/or student(s) 
    • Resident Award: Any individual, HOA group, etc.
  • Eco-Employee (1)
    • Awarded to any public employee (county, city/municipality, RTD, etc.)


Awards are assessed against nominee efforts to make Jefferson County more sustainable through one or more of these ways: 

  • Stewardship of Resources - Examples include material reuse, recycling, composting, etc.
  • Efficient Use of Resources - Examples include energy efficiency improvements, manufacturing material reduction, waste diversion, etc.
  • Economic Vitality - Efforts are entrepreneurial, create economic growth and or job opportunities. 
  • Innovation - Actions, policies or ideas are new, original, or have not been implemented in the past.


Winners will be presented with a customized bamboo-plant trophy, certificate presentation and an announcement on county social platforms.

  1. 2022 Award Winners
  2. 2021 Award Winners
  3. 2020 Award Winners

Organization/Business Award Winner: ZERO Market, Edgewater 
ZERO Market provides alternatives to single-use disposable products, refills for home and body care items, and compostables or recyclables for products that would otherwise be landfill-bound at the end of their lifecycle. They also hold workshops to educate folks in sustainable practices like composting, zero waste lifestyles and creating DIY eco-friendly products.

Student/Educational Institution Award Winner: Leah Walker, School of Mines
As president of the Mines Green Team, Leah has organized Sustainability Talks and implemented Sustainability Day where she organized student volunteers in an effort to divert more than 500 pounds of food waste at the school’s cafe from ending up at the landfill, having it composted instead.

Resident Award: Shiela DeForest
Shiela DeForest founded GREAT (Golden Residents Eco Action Team) during the pandemic to help unify eco-minded Golden residents and friends into climate action. She has also led Golden Earth Week 2021, participated in cleanups for World Cleanup Day 2021, and helped stage #fridaysforfuture climate strikes with Colorado School of Mines students in downtown Golden. She also help planned Golden Earth Week 2022 with eco talks on pollination, waste management and cleanups.

Eco-Employee Award: Theresa Worsham, City of Golden
Theresa is constantly working to improve Golden’s sustainability programs, most recently having implemented compost collection programs for the city. Theresa is currently working to complete and implement the new Energy Code consultant contract, providing assistance to homeowners and developers and city staff to interpret and comply with current energy code requirements.

Honorable Mentions:
Ballmer Peak Distillery, Lakewood
Green Team Superheroes, Wilmot Elementary, Evergreen
Leawood Elementary, Littleton
Make It Vegan, Lakewood