Friday, February 1, 2008

Invitation to Support Bringing Judy Wicks to Louisville

Local Living Economies
P.O. Box 4514
Louisville, KY 40204
February 21, 2008

Dear Friend:

You have a unique opportunity to support and participate in an event that will publicize and promote the importance of local businesses to the local economy.

Most of the items on the shelves of our stores have traveled many miles between origin and final sale. Studies indicate that, on the average, food items have traveled 1500 miles before you pluck them from the shelf.

Though low wages in distant sources and large-volume economics may make for low prices, there are hidden costs paid in increased fuel consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and impact on local businesses.

Many local producers are struggling to develop the infrastructure for moving their products from the points of production to potential consumers.

One of our nation’s leaders in this development effort in the past few years has been Ms. Judy Wicks, who started the White Dog Cafe as a take-out coffee and muffin shop in her home in Philadelphia. She built an informal citywide network of Philadelphia eateries that buy from local and fair-trade suppliers as much as possible. With other like-minded business owners and a vision of a sustainable local economy, she built the Sustainable Business Network of Greater Philadelphia.

In late 2001, she and others formed the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE), a new organization to promote sustainable local economies. It has grown to include 51 other local business networks encompassing more than 15,000 entrepreneurs in the US and Canada.

We have engaged Judy Wicks to be with us in Louisville on April 20, 2008 at 7:00 P.M. at the Clifton Center for a public presentation to cap our Earth Day celebrations. The following morning at 8:00 A.M. Judy will speak with our local business community on the value of incorporating existing local business organizations into the BALLE network. Other workshops are being planned for the rest of the morning.

Obviously there are expenses involved in bringing Judy to Louisville, honorarium, rental fee for Clifton Center, printing expenses etc. We are asking for help with these expenses from Metro Council members, business associations, individual businesses, and individuals.

The Brick House youth center, a local not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization, has agreed to be our financial agent for this venture, so that all contributions are tax-deductible. Please make your contribution payable to Local Living Economies/Brick House and send to:
Local Living Economies
P.O. Box 4514
Louisville, KY 40204

One of our group will phone you within a few days in order to answer any questions you may have. Please join us in this effort to facilitate the development of a sustainable local economy.


Local Living Economies Working Group
John Hartmann (502)560-0085
George G. Perkins George Perkins Burwell Marshall
Phil Ardery, Jr. Joe Roehrig