2023 Sustainability Commission Awards 

The Jefferson County Sustainability Awards are held annually to acknowledge and celebrate environmental stewardship and sustainability efforts made by organizations, employees, students and residents in Jefferson County. Submit nominations between March 23 - May 3, 2023. Winners will be announced at the Board of County Commissioners' June 6 public meeting.


  • Nominees live, work or study in Jefferson County.
  • Nominees align with the Mission, Vision, and Values for Jefferson County set forth by the County Commissioners.


Sustainable Business Award
Recognizes a local Jefferson County businesses or organization that demonstrates sustainable practices through their products, production process or employee efforts. 

Educator of the Year 
Recognizes an educator who inspires students to adopt impactful sustainable practices in their personal lives or within their school community.
Volunteer of the Year
Recognizes an individual who has advanced sustainability efforts in their community in a volunteer role. 

Future Leader Award
Recognizes a young member of the community (19 years of age and under) who demonstrates leadership and commitment to local climate action and sustainability initiatives.

Eco-employee Award
Recognizes a local government employee (county, city, municipality, etc.) who goes above and beyond their position to overcome sustainability-related challenges to create impactful solutions.

Members of the Jefferson County Sustainability Commission will review all nominations received and select one winner per category whom they believe is most deserving of the 2023 award.

Winners will be publicly announced at the Board of County Commissioners May 16 public meeting where they will be presented with a customized bamboo-plant trophy.

Nominate a business or individual you know who advances and demonstrates environmental stewardship and sustainability efforts. Applications are open through April 26, 2023.

  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