Archive for the ‘Speaking’ Category

Stormwater – A Watershed Plan for Green Infrastructure

The Rain Garden at Chicago Center for Green Technology

The Rain Garden at Chicago Center for Green Technology

Stormwater Mitigation Presentation at the Chicago Center for Green Technology

I had the pleasure of presenting “A Watershed Plan for Green Infrastructute” at the Chicago Center for Green Technology (CCGT) on Thursday, May 22nd. The audience realized that stormwater is everyone’s problem and, over the years we have polluted our waterways beyond what most of us realize.

Our current development techniques disrupt the natural hydrologic cycle. Filtration is the key to cleaning our stormwater.  Keeping rainfall on-site is the least expensive and most effective method to improving our environment

The highlight of the presentation was when Bryan Glosik, of the Chicago Center for Green Technology, led a tour of the sophisticated and natural stormwater management system at CCGT. Bryan did an excellent job of explaining the effectiveness of the rain gardens in mitigating the local stormwater problem.

Here is a copy of the presentation:

Bryan Glosik Portrait

Bryan Glosik, Chicago Center for Green Technology, Chicago, Illinois

Comments

Here are comments and feedback about the presentation:

Filtration is key. Water run off disrupt the water cycle. Keeping water in your yard is important.
– Stephen Meyer
The video was great.
The outside tour was my favorite part.
I like the combination of field trip, short video, lecture and case study.
– Armando Median Jr.
What can a small homeowner do?
– David Lindstrom
There are small things that I can do that will make a difference.
– Maureen McCabe

Internet Marketing & Social Media for Irrigation Contractors Presentation

by Tom Barrett

Internet Marketing is Just Plain Confusing!

  • I'd walk a mile for a camel! - Groucho Marx
  • Do you need a website?
  • 80% of consumers have checked you out on the internet before they ever call.
  • This is true for buying a car...
  • ...for buying shoes
  • ...for buying a lawn sprinkler system
  • ...yet 60% of small businesses do not have a website.
  • Looks don't count
  • Search engines count.
  • Top ranking is because of relevancy...
  • ...and newest...
  • ...and closest.
  • The Ohio Irrigation Association's Website
  • Scores a 69 on Marketing Grader
  • It was not expensive.
  • Landscaep Architect's website...
  • ...it is beautiful but Scores a 7...
  • ..and costs a little more,
  • Valley Crest's website...
  • ...scores a 38...
  • ...and costs a lot more.
  • Search 'Ohio Irrigation'...
  • ...ranks #1
  • Search 'Irrigation Ohio'...
  • ...ranks #1
  • Referrals work...
  • Social media is...
  • ....referrals on steriods.
  • We are all connected.me... ....you ..........them.
  • Billboards
  • Radio
  • Direct Mail
  • Twitter
  • Magazine
  • A landscape contractor...
  • Facebook
  • Ohio Irrigation Association on Facebook
  • So - Do YOU need a website????
  • End the confusion
  • Stop wasting Money
  • Give me a call.

On June 12, 2013, I had fun presenting “Internet Marketing & Social Media for Irrigation Contractors” at webinar hosted by the Ohio Irrigation Association.  Here are my thoughts and comments.

Why a Website?
Why Not a Camel?
I’d Walk a Mile for a Camel”

– Groucho Marx

Most irrigation contractors are as confused about website, internet marketing, and social media as Groucho was about Camels. There is an overload of  information available about the which social media channel to use and how to use it.

And a lot of doesn’t work for irrigation contractors.

In this presentation Tom Barrett cleared up a lot of the myths about internet marketing, websites, social media, and email.

Comments

This is excellent information. Just what I am looking for to help my customers.”

– John McKay, Rain Bird

This really cleared up a lot of my confusion. I like seeing the great results we received from our (Ohio Irrigation Association) test of Facebook Advertising.”

– J.C. Wheaton, Centerville Landscaping and Irrigation

Key Points on Internet Marketing

  • Why you, as an irrigation contractor, need a website.
  • You can not judge the effectiveness of a website by its appearance.
  • What you pay for a website varies dramatically and is not always a reflection of its effectiveness in bringing in new business.
  • The audience for your website is both the consumer and the search engines. Here a small change in wording can have a huge impact on being found by an internet search.
  • How social media, and Facebook in particular, can amplify your marketing.
  • Internet marketing is less expensive but more time consuming than conventional marketing.
  • Email converts consumers from looking to buying your product and services.

Here is a copy of the presentation. Feel free to share it with others…

Windridge Condominium Ravine Stormwater Study

In January of 2012, the Windridge Condominium Board of Directors commissioned Fischer Design LLC to conduct a comprehensive stormwater study. This a presentation of the findings and possible green infrastructure solutions.

The presentation to  Windridge Condominium Board of Directors and interested homeowners on the Ravine Stormwater Presentation went extremely well last night.

The highlights of the presentation are:

  • There is a lot of water falling in a one inch rainfall event. The largest stormwater basin is almost sixty acres and receives over 1.6 million gallons of water in a one inch rain. This is the equivalent of allowing your kitchen sink to run fully open 24 four hours a day for 225 days continuously.
  • Going upstream to fix the stormwater issue will provide the greatest return in mitigating the current stormwater issues.
  • The majority of the stormwater problems experienced by the Windridge property owners is coming from the adjacent properties. Developing a cooperative plan with the adjacent property owners will have a large impact on the Windridge ravine erosion issue.

Here is a copy of the presentation:

 

Rainwater Harvesting & Condensate Recovery Presentation at the Chicago Center for Green Technology

Rain IN the Street ImageChicago Center for Green Technology Presentation

Chicago, Illinois

March 1, 2012

Rainwater Harvesting and Condensate Recovery are two tools used in implementing sustainable water practices. Although not widely used in the United States, rainwater harvesting is used extensively in less developed parts of the world. Mistakenly, the primary benefit of rainwater harvesting is not the extensive water savings that can be achieved. The primary benefit from rainwater harvesting is to reduce the untreated sewer discharge into our local waterways that occurs with almost every rainfall.

In the presentation, Barrett will discuss how rainwater harvesting and condensate recovery not only reduces potable water usage but protects, restores, and mimics the natural water cycle.

Additionally, Tom will explain how rainwater harvest can help develop a natural solution for water efficiency, and relieve storm water management issues. By developing a rainwater harvesting systom or other environmentally responsible landscape solution, we can reduce the contaminants that collect in the sewer systems, and make a significant improvement for a cleaner and healthier environment.

“The American Society for Civil Engineers gave the United States’ water systems a grade of ‘D-,’ the lowest of any America infrastructure,” said Barrett. “Through increased use of rain gardens and bioswales, we can improve our water systems and create a better environment for plants, animals and people. “In his presentation, Barrett will explain just how essential some of these tools are to efficiently utilizing and managing water sources.

Here is the presentation from March 1, 2012. Below are the two movies.

Rainwater Harvesting & Condensate Recovery (Chicago 3.1.12)

View more presentations from Tom Barrett

How to Build a Rainwater Collection System from VideoJug

 

Video – A 30,000 Gallon Cistern Installation in Four Minutes

It seems everyone enjoyed the presentation and comments from the participants were great! With thirty-seven participants, it is rewarding to see interest in rainwater harvesting gaining momentum.

Here are some comments:

I really enjoyed the videos, especially making the rain barrel.

– Sheri Yarbrough

 

I get more than enough rain to water my garden and I flush my toilet. Cisterns are awesome!  Condensation should be used.

– Monica Skyora

 

Austrailia is producing some good water saving solutions. I likes the video on installing barrels; drip irrigation is 90% efficient

– Donna McGuire

I am looking forward to my next presentation at the Chicago Center for Green Technology during the summer.

Sustainable Site Development – Rain Water Harvesting Presentation In Chicago March 1, 2012

New Tools for Sustainable Site Development

Rain Water Harvesting and Condensate Recovery

Presentation by Tom Barrett

WHEN:

Thursday, March 1, 2012 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

WHERE:

The Chicago Center for Green Technology

445 N. Sacramento Blvd
(between Chicago Ave. and Lake St.)

Chicago, Illinois

COST: FREE

AIS Continuing Eduction Units: 2

“Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.” wrote Samuel Taylor Coleridge in The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. In its Report Card for America’s Infrastructure, the American Society of Civil Engineers rated our nation’s wastewater, stormwater, and drinking water systems a “D” minus. This is the lowest grade in any infrastructure category. The most alarming conclusion is the next lowest grade is “F” – FAILURE. Over the last fifty years America has not invested in new practices and technologies which can enhance our infrastructure and our environment. Rainwater harvesting and condensate recovery are transformative approaches to sustainable site development.

“The over-borrowing, over-consuming, and under-innovation (is) now in the US. . .,” Antonio van Aqtmael said in an October 2007 issue of Newsweek. As engineering solutions to water management that protects, restores, and mimics the natural water cycle. Rainwater harvesting and condensate recovery incorporates both the natural environment and engineered systems to provide clean water, conserve ecosystems, and provide a wide variety of benefits for people and wildlife. Additionally, all this can be accomplished at a significantly lower cost than conventional concrete and mortar infrastructure.

Join Tom Barrett as he explains how the use of locally produced water helps develop a “natural approach” to efficient use of water and relieves stormwater management issues.

WHAT OTHER SAID ABOUT THIS PRESENTATION

“. . . best class at CCGT so far, rainwater data, new ideas, charts and stats, all the different ways I can use the rainwater for my home.”
” . . . great speaker, the positive outlook, no blame game, examples (drip system), knowledgeable, class got to participate.

Speaker’s Biography – Tom Barrett

Tom Barrett is an accomplished corporate growth and change agent with over thirty years of industry experience. Tom’s leadership experience, holding executive level positions, drives corporate revenue growth through change and innovation for business start-ups, corporate expansions, and divisional turnarounds.

Tom Barrett has been delivering energetic, dynamic presentations and training for over twenty years. These presentations empower people to become masters of change rather than victims of circumstance by developing tools for transformational thinking.

“Tom’s been a leader with smart water technologies, green roofs, rainwater harvesting and other emerging technologies well before they became buzzwords at water conferences. It’s impressive to work with Tom because he knows his stuff from the ground up.”

Jeff Carowitz, Strategic Force Marketing

 

 

Event Registration

Please fill out your information below to register for this event.

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Brave New World: Trends & Opportunities in the Emerging Green Environment

 

Recently, I spoke to the Independent Turf and Ornamental Distributors Association in Nashville, Tennessee

I created two presentations for this group of landscape industry professionals.

 

Brave New World: Trends & Opportunities in the Emerging Green Environment(ITODA)

 

Over the last two and half years we have experienced some of the greatest changes in the history of this country. The economy is only part of it. Every organization has the power and the talent when unleashed will create dramatic change. Here are the key points:
  • Excess Capacity: Competition is increasing and margins are shrinking
  • The Impact of Local Businesses on the Economy
  • The EPA: Friend or Foe
  • The Impact of Downsizing on Employee Engagement
  • The Dramatically Increasing Presence of Women in Work
  • Transforming Your Business by Creating Value

View more presentations from Tom Barrett.
The current state and trends of the Landscape, golf Course, and Sports Turf Industry. How we stand out, where we rank, and how we are heard. You will be challenged in this provocative and sometimes controversial presentation to do things differently.  Tom Barrett is a national speaker and author. His presentations empower people to become masters of change. Learn how to grow your business without busting the bank. Here are the key points:

  • Business is rapidly changing
  • Opportunities exist in areas unavailable five years ago
  • Customers have different needs and require a new approach
  • Companies investing in marketing are growing

View more presentations from Tom Barrett.

I feel the presentations were incredibly helpful to the folks in the audience. Based on conversations I had with audience members, some of the points they found most interesting were:

  • The dramatically changing social environment, especially women in the workforce.
  • Getting sales people to make more sales calls.
  • Emerging opportunities in green infrastructure and the role landscaping will play in remediating our environment.

I truly enjoyed speaking for an energetic and enthusiastic crowd at Independent Turf and Ornamental Distributors Association. I hope I can return soon, and I look forward to my next speaking engagement on January 12, 2012 at the Green Industry Expo in Indianapolis. I will be leading a panel of experts on landscape industry trends.

Sustainable Site Development : Rain Gardens & Bioswales Presentation at the Center For Green Technology

The Rain Garden at Chicago Center for Green Technology, Chicago, Illinios

I had the pleasure of presenting “Constructing Rain Gardens & Bioswales” at the Chicago Center for Green Technology (CCGT) on Thursday, September 29th. The audience, between 30 to 40 people, was great.

We talked about stormwater issues and toured the rain garden at the Chicago Center for Green Technology. Steve Pincuspy, Director of CCGT, led the tour and did an excellent job of explaining the effectiveness of the rain gardens in mitigating the local stormwater problem.

The presentation was followed by over thirty minutes of questions.

Here is a copy of the presentation:

 

Reflections on the Great Lakes Awareness Event

Great Lakes Awareness Event Patagonia ChicagoRecently, I spoke at the Great Lakes Awareness Event hosted by Patagonia Chicago.

The workshop and ensuing panel discussion was incredibly helpful to the people in the audience. Based on conversations I had with audience members, the point they found most interesting was the amount of pollution caused by the sewer water overflow that is created every time it rains. Most people are unaware that our stormwater systems are combined with our sewer systems and untreated sewer water is dumped into our local water ways when it rains.

The Alliance for the Great Lakes received a $10,000 grant from Patagonia for restoration efforts.

Panel members include:

• Mary Lammert Khoury, aquatic ecologist and conservation planner, Great Lakes Project, The Nature Conservancy;

• Tom Barrett, a nationally recognized speaker and authority on sustainable solutions and owner of Green Water Infrastructure;

Tom Barrett at the Great Lakes Awareness Event

Tom Barrett presenting stormwater issues to a standing room audience at the Great Lakes Awareness Event at Patagonia Chicago

• Jessica Dexter, staff attorney with the Environmental Law and Policy Center, the Midwest’s leading public interest environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization

Refreshments were provided by Goose Island with live music by Laura Glyda.

I am look forward to my next speaking engagement with the USGBC-IL on June 16th on Water Efficient Landscapes at the Ball Horticultural Center in West Chicago.  Here is a link to the Event: http://admin.usgbc-illinois.org/widget/calendar?eventId=266507&EventViewMode=EventDetails

Great Lakes Awareness Charity Event with Patagonia

I am excited to be participating in the Great Lakes Awareness Event with Patagonia, the sportswear and outdoor apparel retialer in Chicago.
Have a Voice in the Future of the Great Lakes and Award a $10,000 Grant. Click here to read more….

Thursday, June 2, 6:30pm
Patagonia Chicago

Did you know there is a movement to privatize the Great Lakes, that they are plagued with invasive species, that raw sewage is regularly dumped into Lake Michigan from the city of Chicago?

Join us and the Alliance for the Great Lakes at Patagonia Chicago for a workshop and panel discussion by local experts about these issues and others surrounding our Great Lakes, and help us to decide which environmental group should receive a $10,000 Patagonia grant for restoration efforts.

Panel members include:
• Mary Lammert Khoury, aquatic ecologist and conservation planner;
• Tom Barrett, a nationally recognized speaker and authority on sustainable solutions and owner of Green Water Infrastructure;

• Jessica Dexter, staff attorney with the Environmental Law and Policy Center, the Midwest’s leading public interest environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization

This event is free. Refreshments will be provided by Goose Island with live music by Laura Glyda.

Patagonia Chicago
1800 N. Clybourn Ave.
312-951-0518

Click here for directions to the store: http://www.patagonia.com/web/us/patagonia.go?assetid=1936


 

Upcoming Presentation – Water Efficient Landscaping: From Airports to Your Own Backyard (2.0 GBCI CE hours)

  • 16 June 2011USGBC Illinois Logo
  • 5:30 PM – 8:00 PM
  • Ball Horticulture,
    622 Town Road
    West Chicago, IL 60185

Registration

  • This discounted price is for full-time students only.

    Register Here


Please note that registration is non-refundable. If you experience any registration difficulties or have questions please contact Karin Barden at 312-245-8300 x2.

 

Join the USGBC – Illinois Chapter’s West Suburban Branch for an educational program about stormwater management and water efficient landscaping.

This event has been submitted for 2.0 GBCI CE hours.

This event will cover issues and solutions related to water – efficiency and management.  The panel will identify typical considerations for plant selection, challenges in rural environments, and principals of water efficient landscaping.  Issues related to stormwater and how the landscape can remedy related environmental issues will be presented, as well as an overview of the US EPA’s WaterSense program will be explained as an example of possible solutions to efficiently use and protect water supplies.

Case studies of gardens planted at Northwind Perennial Farm, Gurnee Park District, Olbrich Botanic Gardens, and University of Chicago will showcase projects that have reduced maintenance costs with the usage of native plantings.  A case study of the O’Hare Modernization Project and the sustainable plantings incorporated there will also be showcased.

Speakers:

  • John Antonoglu, Associate Vice President, Primera Engineers, Ltd.
  • Tom Barrett, President, Green Water Infrastructure, Inc.
  • Roy Diblik, Co-Owner, Northwind Perennial Farm
  • Cary McElhinney, WaterSense Coordinator, US EPA Region 5, Water Division

Moderator:

  • Sharon Waller, Environmental Engineer, Sustainable Systems LLC Consulting

Agenda:

  • 5:30 – 5:50  Ball Horticulture Garden Tour, Networking, Registration & Light Appetizers
  • 5:50 – 6:00  Introductions
  • 6:00 – 6:25  Plant Selection & Landscape Design
  • 6:25 – 6:50  Stormwater Management
  • 6:50 – 7:15  O’Hare Case Study
  • 7:15 – 7:30  US EPA’s Water Sense Program
  • 7:30 – 7:40  Recap & Formative Assessment
  • 7:40 – 8:00  Questions & Answers

Oak Sponsor

For directions to Ball Horticulture in West Chicago, click the following link –Directions to Ball in West Chicago.pdf.

For parking instructions, click the following link –Ball Campus Parking Map.pdf.