by Tim Willmott : Be the first to leave a comment
Judy Wicks opened The White Dog Café in Philadelphia as a muffin shop in 1983, and since then has been involved with social activism and community work. The café’s mission was to serve the community, the customers, themselves and the earth. Judy grew what began as a tiny muffin shop into a 200-seat restaurant featuring fresh local food with a national reputation for community involvement, environmental stewardship, responsible business practices, and leadership in the local economy movement.
Under Judy’s leadership, White Dog purchased sustainably grown produce from local family farmers for over 20 years, and developed policies to purchase only humanely and naturally raised meat, poultry and eggs, as well as sustainably harvested fish, and fair trade coffee, tea, chocolate, vanilla, and cinnamon. Other sustainable business practices she implemented at White Dog include recycling and composting, solar hot water, eco-friendly soaps and office supplies, and purchasing 100% of electricity from renewable sources, the first business in Pennsylvania to do so.
In 2009, Judy sold the company through a unique exit strategy that preserves White Dog’s sustainable business practices and maintains local, independent ownership – but not without some discontent.
Judy represents those pioneering people who have lived according to their principles, adopting and designing practices that are now becoming mainstream – localism, community, responsible business, local economies.